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Being Indispensable

Being Indispensable is a podcast for Executive Assistants. It's about the mindset shift required to form a true partnership with your executive but it's also about never losing sight of the fact that we are human beings not human doings and we need to be kind to ourselves and focus on progress over perfection. Join Liz as she explores the skills and leadership development required to build a true partnership with your executive.
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Being Indispensable
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Nov 16, 2021

In this solo episode, Liz shares why she LOVED this book by Liz Wiseman, and why it's a must-read for Executive Assistants who want to be impact players or Linchpin Assistants.

Liz Wiseman is a researcher and executive advisor who teaches leadership to executives around the world.

She is the author of New York Times bestseller Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone SmarterThe Multiplier Effect: Tapping the Genius Inside Our Schools, and Wall Street Journal bestseller Rookie Smarts: Why Learning Beats Knowing in the New Game of Work.

The Wiseman Group is a talent development and research organization headquartered in Silicon Valley, California. For people striving to build a high-contribution culture, The Wiseman Group creates insights that ignite multiplying behavior, because developing and using talent is the ultimate advantage.

Head over to https://impactplayersbook.com/ to find out more about the book and the research behind it and to take a free quiz.

Nov 2, 2021

Part Two of my interview with ex-Linchpin Assistant Rachael Bonetti.

In the second half of our interview Rachael shares her five tips for developing your 'Executive Presence'.

Rachael says "It's in the way they move, speak and show up every day. It's evident in their actions, their commitments and their focus." It's something she works with EAs to develop and demonstrate in her mentoring programs.

The five tips are in the area of:

1. Composure

2. Online presence

3. Pay attention

4. Confidence

5. Preparedness

Rachael mentors Executive Assistants "who want to drastically change the trajectory of their careers, opening access to the most senior roles that exist. Those who want to step up as leaders and valued business partners."

Connect with Rachael here:

https://www.rachaelbonetti.com/

https://www.instagram.com/rachaelbonetti/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/rachael-bonetti-4b46561a/

Oct 26, 2021

The first in my two-part interview with Rachael Bonetti. Listen to the episode to hear her experience navigating the Career Spider Frame.

How Rachael got clear on the skills, behaviours and values that empowered her to support Chairmen, CEOs, change-makers and entrepreneurs, and show up as a Linchpin Assistant.

How Rachael started and grew her side hustle, The Admin Alchemist, enabling her to step away from her EA role to focus on her business full time. 

Hear how Rachael mentors Executive Assistants "who want to drastically change the trajectory of their careers, opening access to the most senior roles that exist.  Those who want to step up as leaders and valued business partners."

Connect with Rachael here:

https://www.rachaelbonetti.com/

https://www.instagram.com/rachaelbonetti/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/rachael-bonetti-4b46561a/

 

Oct 19, 2021

The third and final episode in my mini-series on how the dreaded Drama Triangle plays out for you as an Executive Assistant or Office Professional.

In this episode we focus on the 'Perpetrator'. These people are the villain of the drama. They're controlling and they're catch-cry will be something like...

"It's all your fault", "I know better", "You're doing it wrong".

Setting boundaries and communicating assertively are vital in managing people like this. 

Download my free guide to escaping The Drama Triangle here: https://bit.ly/linchpin140

Listen to Episode 113 to hear two strategies for communicating assertively

https://myeacareer.com/podcasts/113-power-skills-for-executive-assistants-how-to-handle-a-difficult-conversation/

Read the World Administrator Summit report on bullying here:

https://wa-summit.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/worldwide_workplace_bullying_survey_results_2017.pdf

Link to YouTube video on Understanding the Drama Triangle vs Prescence from The Conscious Leadership Group - https://youtu.be/ovrVv_RlCMw

Oct 12, 2021

This week's episode follows on from Episode 140 and dives a bit deeper into the role of the 'rescuer' in The Drama Triangle. 

- The 3 situations where the victim looks to the rescuer to save them from

- The people that may present want you as an assistant, to 'rescue' them

- The WIFM (What's In It For Me) you get from being a rescuer 

- How The Drama Triangle is a part of 'below the line' thinking and behaviours

- 3 reasons your 'starting gate' role is the rescuer

- 3 steps to moving from being a rescuer to being a coach/teacher

Links discussed in this episode:

Free download on The Drama Triangle - https://bit.ly/linchpin140

https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/beingindispensable/Episode_83_Where_Am_I.mp3

https://jacquijames.com.au/from-victim-to-persecutor-to-rescuer-and-back-again/

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/five-ways-ask-better-questions-liz-van-vliet/

Link to YouTube video on Understanding the Drama Triangle vs Prescence from The Conscious Leadership Group - https://youtu.be/ovrVv_RlCMw

Oct 5, 2021

This week's episode relates to a topic that I see coming up again and again in my work coaching and training executive assistants and administrative professionals. The Drama Triangle is something you will relate to both in terms of your work environment and in your personal life.

Are you a victim, a persecutor, or a rescuer? If you're human, chances are there will be different situations where you may view yourself (or be seen by others) as all three. 

The Drama Triangle was the work of psychotherapist Stephen Karpman in the 1960s. He developed it as a way to articulate the three dysfunctional roles that operate in any relationship where conflict arises.

I've created a free one-page download to help you reflect on the 3 ways you can understand and escape The Drama Triangle. 

https://bit.ly/linchpin140

Learn more about The Drama Triangle concept:

https://powerofted.com/drama-triangle/

https://youtu.be/ovrVv_RlCMw

https://www.forbes.com/sites/drnancydoyle/2020/02/17/avoiding-workplace-drama-4-steps-to-being-an-ally-not-a-rescuer-victim-or-persecutor/?sh=43fd46dca3d1

Sep 27, 2021

It's been a few months between podcast episodes but baby, I'm back!

This episode is a solo one, explaining what's been going on and providing a glimpse of what to expect for the remainder of 2021.

Thanks for sticking with me and sending you lots of love my lovely listeners x

Jun 24, 2021

Part Two of my interview with Marco where we continue our conversation around the self-directed learning and development that Marco has initiated in order to build his capability, confidence and value as an Executive Assistant.

Extending himself as an EA has also involved stepping into the limelight on another podcast, The Future Assistant, hosted by Diana Brandl. You can find the episode here.

Marco Macente is an Italian office professional who has been working as an Executive Assistant for ten years. He is based in Milan and has studied in the United Kingdom where he undertook a Masters in Corporate Communications in London.

Marco supports senior managers within the Oncology unit of Bayer Pharmaceuticals and in this episode shares how he is fulfilling the role of EA as an Executive Business Partner.

Marco is a wonderful personification of what I mean when I describe someone who is a Linchpin Assistant. You will hear in this interview how he is:

- Knowing: Marco invests time in knowing himself, his manager/s, his organisation, his job and his Power Skills

- Empowered: How Marco uses his Power Skills to propel him into that Linchpin Assistant space

- Strategic: What he does to ensure he is able to see around corners and stay one step ahead of his manager

- Effective: The skills and competencies he has developed that enable him to be more than efficient but truly effective.

Jun 16, 2021

Marco Macente is an Italian office professional who has been working as an Executive Assistant for ten years. He is based in Milan and has studied in the United Kingdom where he undertook a Masters in Corporate Communications in London.

Marco supports senior managers within the Oncology unit of Bayer Pharmaceuticals and in this episode shares how he is fulfilling the role of EA as an Executive Business Partner.

Marco is a wonderful personification of what I mean when I describe someone who is a Linchpin Assistant. You will hear in this interview how he is:

- Knowing: Marco invests time in knowing himself, his manager/s, his organisation, his job and his Power Skills

- Empowered: How Marco uses his Power Skills to propel him into that Linchpin Assistant space

- Strategic: What he does to ensure he is able to see around corners and stay one step ahead of his manager

- Effective: The skills and competencies he has developed that enable him to be more than efficient but truly effective.

Come back next week for Part Two of our chat. 

May 18, 2021

Climbing the career ladder isn't all it's cracked up to be. Instead, think of your career like a spider frame...

Yes there's up.

But there's also across.

This episode is the part of my discussion with Dani and Tricky from Tenfold Australia who I featured in Episode 135. I took the opportunity to get them to tell me about their personal experience navigating the career spider frame.

Listen to them as they recount the moves they've made, the lessons they've learned, and the way that Tenfold Australia is now offering them a great vantage point to survey those moves respective pivot points.

Hearing about how other professionals navigate their career spider frame will hopefully encourage you to reflect on your own journey and celebrate your own movements.

 

May 4, 2021

Tenfold Australia was established in 2020 to ‘tenfold Australia’s impact for a better world’.

They describe themselves as a 21st century multinational leadership forum. The company name reflects their purpose to tenfold Australia’s impact for a better world.

Episode 135 is my interview with Dani Matthews, Chief Experience Officer (CXO) and Richard (Tricky) Mableson, Chief Success Officer (CSO) of Tenfold Australia.

Commencing operations in 2020, Tenfold Australia provides a range of digital and in-person forums for the Australian based leaders of global companies. 

A core component of the forums is a monthly EA 'pod' where the Executive Assistants of the member business leaders meet. Tenfold Australia sees the EA as part of the leadership team and are committed to supporting and enabling their growth through these monthly meetings (virtual and in person).

Listen to the episode to hear about what Dani and Tricky  have observed makes an indispensable EA, how to improve your capacity to be a strategic thinker, and how the EAs they interact with at Tenfold Australia have adapted and pivoted to ensure they remain indispensable despite the impact of remote working and reduced travel for their business leaders.

https://www.tenfoldaustralia.com/

https://www.linkedin.com/company/tenfoldaustralia/

https://www.bcg.com/publications/2020/heart-ceo-effectiveness

 

 

Apr 27, 2021

It's been a month between podcast episodes and for that I am truly sorry.

Leaving you, my lovely listener in the lurch isn't a good feeling. But sadly, there's been a bit going on for me and unfortunately I haven't felt capable of showing up on the podcast.

That's changing today. I'm back and I want to be my authentic self and share what's been going on for me. 

 

Mar 25, 2021

I didn't invent the phrase 'hope is not a strategy' but I love it and I think it's particularly relevant for assistants who find themselves trapped in a hope-based strategy when it comes to asking for what they want and what they need AND asking for what their boss wants and needs.

In this episode I explore the topic of self advocacy and how it is one area where being comfortable engaging in difficult conversations is an essential Power Skill that I want you to invest energy in developing.

If you'd like to get some practical tips and tactics on how you can engage in difficult conversations with more ease and confidence you want to register for my upcoming masterclass on this hot topic for assistants. 

Register here: http://bit.ly/linchpinskills1

This webinar will be held live on April 29th @ 12 midday AEST and the link to the recording emailed following the event to those who have registered.

Mar 11, 2021

No one likes a difficult conversation (including me). Being able to engage in challenging conversations is a crucial Power Skill that I train assistants in.

There are many people who avoid them altogether but the consequences of this can be enormous and it's definitely something that will get in the way of you being perceived as a Linchpin Assistant.

If you're someone who cares about creating and maintaining healthy and happy relationships, both at work as well as in your personal life, you know that sometimes an uncomfortable conversation is necessary.
 
In a recent speaking engagement I asked assistants for the one Power Skill they struggle with the most....and engaging in difficult conversations was overwhelmingly nominated as a problem area. So in this episode I share:

  1. Three questions to ask yourself before a tough conversation
  2. Four behaviours that are most likely to escalate conflict
  3. One DO and One don’t to keep front of mind
  4. Two frameworks or scaffolds for structuring a difficult conversation
  5. One final tactic for avoiding misunderstandings or miscommunication

Resources discussed in this episode:

Georgia Murch can be found here: https://georgiamurch.com/blogs/

Listen to Episode 113 and 55 for more tools and tactics to help you engage in difficult conversations and power up this Power Skill.

https://myeacareer.com/podcasts/113-power-skills-for-executive-assistants-how-to-handle-a-difficult-conversation/

https://myeacareer.com/podcasts/how-to-approach-difficult-conversations-steps-for-executive-assistants/

Join the waitlist for the Empowered Assistant's Academy here: http://bit.ly/eaacademywaitlist

Mar 4, 2021

A few years back I started surveying business leaders to get their perspective on the role of the EA and how their EA enabled their leadership and effectiveness. The results continue to be interesting.

In this episode I share a couple of the insights. Interestingly whilst leaders SAY they want their EA to demonstrate leadership traits, significantly less respondents agreed with statements that bear out what it LOOKS like for an assistant to be treated as part of the leadership team. This disconnect is something I know many of you will not be surprised by.

To share this survey with your business leader go to:

https://lizvanvliet.typeform.com/to/aLOWjz

I would love to get more responses to add to my research.

The survey incorporates ideas from Adam Fidler's EA Manifesto which you can read here:

https://adamfidler.academy/blog/2017/6/21/the-ea-manifesto-what-i-am

I interviewed Adam for the podcast back in 2017 (Episode 26 and Episode 27)

In today's episode I also mentioned the book Atomic Habits by James Clear, Managing Up by Mary Abbajay and Attention Management by Maura Thomas. 

Feb 23, 2021

Linchpin Assistants are 'superpowered' by what I describe as their Power Skills...soft skills on steroids!

Negotiating for mutual benefit is one of the 10 Power Skills that I train assistants to be able to rely on to help them be that little hinge that can swing big doors.

Resources discussed in this episode:

- Huthwaite whitepaper can be downloaded here

https://info.huthwaiteinternational.com/effective-negotiation-skills

- Create Winning Agreements, A Practical Guide to Negotiation by Gavin Presman

- https://whitneyjohnson.com/hbr-six-tips-for-reluctant-negotiators/

Feb 10, 2021

It might be February but it's still early enough in 2021 to spend some time reflecting and refocusing so that you can march forward purposefully into this still fresh year.

In this episode Liz shares some resources to help you do exactly that.

Firstly, Dr. Peter Fuda is a thought leader in the area of high performing teams and leadership. He has a brilliant blog and is someone to follow on LinkedIn. Find him at: 

https://www.enixa.co/

Liz also mentions the concept of S.M.A.A.R.T. goals (as opposed to just S.M.A.R.T.) The extra 'A' stands for Action-Oriented and this idea was one she picked up from listening to Michael Hyatt in Episode #66 – What SMART Goals Get Wrong. You can find it on Apple Podcasts here:

Finally, Liz mentions Pat Lencioni and his encouragement to be 'Hungry, Humble and Smart' as an employee.

Follow Liz on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/lizveevee/

Dec 22, 2020

A solo episode from Liz to wish all of my lovely listeners a safe, healthy and happy holiday season. 

In this episode I share my own experience of Christmas in hospital attached to a drip being cared for during Breast Cancer treatment and finding myself in Intensive Care coming close to death. 

I talk about the lessons I learnt about what's worth caring about and what can be kicked to the curb. I talk about gratitude and perspective and why for me these are not just empty words.

It's been a tough year and I want you to know how much you mean to me lovely listeners. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Dec 10, 2020

Welcome to a 'road rambling' episode where I share what's been going on in my house in the last few weeks and why I've been MIA to a certain extent as a result.

If there's a takeaway from this episode it's that we need to be as kind to ourselves as we are to others. Life is messy and as I like to say, we are human beings not human doings and the realities of 'being a human' have been what I've experienced in the last few weeks.

Onwards and upwards. Bring on 2021!

Nov 24, 2020

Part 2 of my interview with Emma Rhoades from Her Corporate Journey. In this episode Emma shares her 5 tips for managing your manager and how she has learnt from experience the value of each of these tips.

This episode reinforces why I believe the five elements of my Knowing Assistant Framework are vital to helping you develop as an assistant. This episode particularly reinforces the value of Knowing Your Manager and Knowing Your Power Skills (Managing Up being one of them!)

You can learn more about Emma and Her Corporate Journey at

https://hercorporatejourney.net/

Nov 17, 2020

 The Being Indispensable podcast is about inspiring and educating you as assistants and OPs and Emma Rhoades is someone I have enormous respect for in terms of her knowledge and expertise in the area of management skills and self leadership.

 

Emma walks the talk and in Part 1 of our conversation she shares her own experience navigating the career spider frame and how she has arrived at the point of founding Her Corporate Journey.

In the first of two episodes we also discuss:

  • The value of noticing and observing the patterns and themes that are present in your work history 
  • How curiosity and courage drive Emma and how important self-reflection on her values and value have been to her
  • We talk about what drives her and the change she wants to make in the corporate experience of women
  • You will hear how Emma has made conscious decisions in the way she has sought to show up as a manager and how she wants to empower and support others to do so
  • Emma shares her thoughts on the idea of leading from where you are
  • Finally we talk about the value that can be gained from getting clear on your value proposition and your goals.

You can learn more about Emma and Her Corporate Journey at

https://hercorporatejourney.net/

Nov 11, 2020

In this episode Liz explains what Attention Management is and how it differs from Time Management and some tools and techniques for being proactive about managing your attention.

There is a school of thought that Time Management is an outdated concept.

Instead it’s about Attention Management - switching your attention to focusing on achieving a specific result.

Maura Thomas defines it as 

...the ability to consciously direct your attention in any given moment, to be more proactive than reactive, and to maintain control rather than inadvertently relinquish it. It’s about regaining control over your attention and thereby taking control of your life. Attention management empowers your productivity.”

Links to resources discussed:

https://maurathomas.com/

Maura Thomas - Ted Talk

https://youtu.be/Yzp5ZJJOXNc

https://www.atlassian.com/blog/productivity/attention-management-for-teams

 

Nov 3, 2020

Decision making and critical thinking fall under the umbrella of problem solving and that is right in the wheel-house of a Linchpin Assistant who is effective and efficient because they possess Power Skills like these.

Listen to this episode to hear how I define decision making and critical thinking, why these two Power Skills are in my top ten and a framework you can use to problem solve in your job and in your life.

This episode is also helpful listening if you want to notice and observe how your manager makes decisions and how you might support them in this process.

Find the free download that I mention in the episode here

https://offers.myeacareer.com/123

Oct 27, 2020

In Part 2 of my conversation with Jo Miller we talk about the FIVE leadership types that Jo has identified and the traits of each. Jo does some myth busting around the perception that you need to be a manager of people to be a leader.

We focus on HOW you can amplify your accomplishments and Jo takes me through the ways she recommends you can put this into action. 

Finally we discuss the trap that you fall into when you make yourself indispensable for doing work that downplays your potential. 

https://jomiller.com/

https://myeacareer.com/podcasts/indispensable-skills-how-to-develop-a-shadow-organisation-diagram/

https://jomiller.com/100qualities/

https://jomiller.com/amplify/

Oct 20, 2020

This week’s episode is Part 1 of my interview with the awesome Jo Miller who I have mentioned on the podcast a number of times and dedicated Episode 66 to sharing her method for creating a Shadow Organisation Diagram.

If you haven't listened to it you can find it here.

https://myeacareer.com/podcasts/indispensable-skills-how-to-develop-a-shadow-organisation-diagram/

In Part 1 we explore: 

- Jo’s experience navigating her own career climbing frame (the topic of last weeks episode)

- We explore why and how you can tap into your leadership super power.

- Jo explains the five leadership types that she outlines in her book and takes us through an exercise you can do to identify your leadership strengths. 

- Jo also talks about the one thing she recommends that we all do and what gets in the way of us actually doing that one thing.

I hope you enjoy Part 1 of our conversation and can’t wait to bring you Part 2 next week.

https://jomiller.com/

https://jomiller.com/100qualities/

https://jomiller.com/amplify/

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