Personal Assistant, Personal Angel.
Personal Assistant, Personal Angel TM
by Elena Castelló | Nov-2018
Lourdes Carbó, founder and director of Alberta La Grup, had a great intuition: a “personal assistant” is like a personal guardian, an “angel”. Just like in the finance world where we speak about “business angels” – the figure who helps entrepreneurs start their business investments and supports them – a “personal assistant” is much more than merely an “assistant”: it is an “all round helper”, who watches over their client. Therefore, Lourdes has created the expression “personal angels”. “We wanted to deepen the the scope of the concept of a personal assistant.” explains Lourdes Carbó. The quality of service at Alberta La Grup and their 360 degree attention requires a new title.
A different philosophy
“Without a doubt, our philosophy of work is different.” Lourdes Carbó claims.
“There is no law establishing what the functions of a “personal assistant” are. But, our work provides a much broader vision of their tasks. Therefore, our professionals are “Personal Angels”. What type of work defines a “personal angel”? From receptionist to managers secretay or secretary of the department, up to “Office Manager” or “Executive Assistant”. A “Personal Angel” does more than just organising travel, answering phone calls or managing important documents” adds Lourdes Carbó. A “Personal Angel” also carries out all the personal affairs for a client. It is a complex job that requires a lot of sensitivity and intuition.
The right hand
A “personal angel” is a professional with compete confidentiality, the first person to go, because they are the person you confide in more than anyone, to resolve all aspects of your personal and professional life, and because they are the most capable of doing so, as if it was done by the client themselves: this is one of the definitions that Lourdes Carbó likes the most. “Yes, a personal angel is your absolute right hand” she explains. “They are the figure that you delegate any management to” Therefore, their work goes beyond the agenda, flights, calendar, calls or bureaucratic procedures. They also tackle more personal tasks, medical appointments, leisure… “They are like the eyes and the hands of the client” says Lourdes, “Always by your side to coordinate and execute.”
An endless list…
The attitudes and capacities that a “personal angel” that can develop when working with a demanding client are infinite. They have to deal with not only their intellectual, but also their psychology. The “personal angel” is always available to respond in the best way. At Alberta La Grup we have complied up to 137 skills and abilities that characterise what this means. Listed below are only a few of them: Good manners, diplomacy, discretion, confidentiality, a good memory, the ability to multitask, multilingual training, complete availability, – especially to travel-, ability to react quickly, have a network of contacts.. These are characteristics that you learn with good training and experience, but that are also part of a persons character and personality, such as emotions, self control, the capacity to organise and anticipate, the intuition to understand situations and capture the needs of the client.
A “guardian angel”
Our “personal angel” watches over and cares for their client (like an angel does, of course!) How? Putting their needs first and looking after their interests. “A “personal angel” is always one step ahead, says Lourdes. Negotiating to obtain the best possible results. Therefore, it is essential when defining them to use words such as fidelity, honesty, and above all, loyalty.
What are the clients like who demand a “personal angel”?
At Alberta La Grup, we work, above all with personal and private needs. We take care of the organisation of private trips, medical appointments, family agendas, domestic life, activities for children, the international arrival of guests, extensive changing rooms or private celebrations…”We travel with the children, we know who has an allergy, what they like”, describes Lourdes. “A good “personal angel” can get to know all the brands and models of private planes and helicopters. Or the Jimmy Choo collection from the past three years. Not an expert in fashion, but has the right contacts.”
A good contacts list
Therefore, a “personal angel” responds daily, getting rid of stress.The everyday life of a “personal angel” is a permanent challenge, but the preparation and professionalism allows them to resolve everything efficiently and without nerves. The key aspect: a “personal angel” always knows where to find the necessary information. From where to repair a delicate piece of jewellery for a family, to where to find fencing classes, the best flowers in the city or to make a reservation in the most demanded restaurant at the moment.
Implication within a discreet and intelligent distance
A “personal angel” is always accessible and has a very close relationship with their client – which is essential, given that they manage confidential information-, but at the same time, they know that they do not belong in the environment. Between closeness and intimacy there is a fine line which you must not cross, and a “personal angel” knows this very well. “I always say that we are like ballerinas, because we enter, tip-toeing into a house, but we are not part of it.” says Lourdes.The formula: you have to distance yourself to not lose the perspective, whilst being close enough to understand the necessities of the client. It is only in this way that the results will be impeccable.
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