Like many Assistants I meet, I never set out to become a support professional. After working in the Hotel Industry, I moved with my family from the UK to The Netherlands. I combined caring for my two children with learning Dutch and coping with the major culture shift. My re-entry into the workplace was as Assistant to the European Engineering Manager of The Dow Chemical Company in Rotterdam. During my 12 years with Dow, I increased my skills by contributing to Dow’s Quality Improvement programme, training the Secretarial team in problem-solving techniques and improving work processes.
I made a break with engineering in 2000 to venture into the world of telecommunications. I spent a year as PA to the Senior Vice President of Customer Operations at KPNQwest in The Hague, where I was again involved in secretarial team building and improvement processes.
Later, I moved back to the petrochemical industry, working as Office Manager for an American Consulting Company after which I spent four years as PA to the VP of Progress Software. In 2008 I took on the role of Office Manager and Assisstant to a VP at Shell Aircraft, where I developed a Mentoring Programme “Secrets of a Successful Assistant”, sharing my experiences and helping PAs with their professional development.
I loved being an Assistant, but as retirement loomed on the horizon, I started to think about my future. Those thoughts became reality when I started working for myself as Monumental Assistance.
As Interim Chair of the The World Administrators Alliance, I am engaged with Admin Associations and Networks across the globe. This voluntary position gives me the opportunity to ‘pay it forward’ to the profession that has opened so many doors to me. The aim of the WA-Alliance is to Guide, Influence, Positively Develop and Elevate the Admin Profession.
I hold the Professional Certificate of Management from the British Open University Business School and the Diploma Academic Counsellor and Coach from the Academy for Counselling and Coaching.