By Anna Ferraro
Do you love paperwork? Checklists? Calendars? Spreadsheets? Scheduling appointments? Confirming appointments? Keeping people on track for their scheduled and confirmed appointments? Chances are, you aren’t passionate about any of those things. But thankfully, there are some people are. We’ll call them administrative professionals.
Since 1952, those people have been celebrated on a special day – a day known as Administrative Professionals Day.
As corny as it may sound to some, I would like to propose that this year, Administrative Professionals Day should be celebrated for all it’s worth – because this year, it has new meaning for me.
After recent reflections and experiences, I have concluded that my sister, who is 16 months my senior, was the consummate administrative professional. As children, when we played with our friends at church, she was always organizing the group into doing “something productive.” When we did our homework together, she showed me her brilliant systems to complete it more efficiently. When she was 12, she was operating a small home business (I cringed at the number of phone calls she made, and the Excel spreadsheets that she navigated through at the end of each month. The columns and formulas made me want to pull my hair out. Not her).
In addition to running a small business, teaching violin students, and being the Communications Director for an international missions organization, she volunteered for local organizations, took care of everything technology-related in our home, designed our church’s directory, was the primary “booking agent” for the family calendar (not easy to do with nine kids in the house!), instituted weekly “family business meetings,” and did countless other tasks that half the world didn’t even know needed to be completed – until they were done.
I would often ask her, “How do you figure out how to do all this stuff?” She would casually respond, “Google is a verb, my dear. That’s how.”
For her birthday one year, I ceremoniously placed a sign on her desk that read, “Let me drop everything and work on your problem.” For an administrative professional like her, that sign was a well-deserved badge of honor.
The only problem is, she’s married now – and lives 500 miles away. In our little office where I am still trying to hold all of her work together, her professional administrative work is desperately missed.
So this year, I am celebrating Administrative Professionals Day for all it’s worth – cards, flowers, chocolates, you name it – anything that can brighten up an office is going to land on my sister’s desk on Wednesday, April 27. If I were her boss, I’d give her the day off, a bonus, and maybe even a raise.
And for any Administrative Professionals that you are blessed to have in your life, I suggest you do the same.