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Private Secretary Career Description

Private secretaries assist the executives in their performance in the management field and help to achieve maximum efficiency in the business. Private secretaries handle correspondence, deal with clients, and arrange bookings and appointments on behalf of their bosses. In this way they relieve their employer of many time-consuming details in the work.

Private secretaries are also known as personal secretaries, personal assistants or on the highest level, as executive secretaries (office managers). Although this occupation is traditionally female, men are also employed as private secretaries and executive assistants.

What am I going to do in this occupation?

The work of private secretaries include, besides secretarial duties like typing and the handling of incoming and outgoing correspondence, other tasks such as the reception of clients and screening telephone and personal callers in order to ensure that the employer is not unnecessarily interrupted. Appointments are made for those who wish to consult the employer directly. They update and consult their employer's diary and remind them of appointments. They also furnish the employers with all the necessary information they might need for telephone calls, visitors and business trips. Private secretaries generally arrange bookings for business trips and depending on their employers could be responsible for arranging social functions. Additional tasks may include basic bookkeeping, writing minutes or drawing up reports for the press .

The works of private secretaries are, although demanding, very gratifying and the modern typewriters and word processors contribute to high productivity and pleasant working conditions.


What kind of personality do I need? Private secretaries must be helpful and be able to deal pleasantly and tactfully with clients and members of the public. They must be capable of being trusted with confidential information. Complete integrity, high ethical standards, good general knowledge and adaptability are essential. The ability to make decisions and accept responsibility both in conjunction with their employers and in their absence if necessary is an important asset private secretaries must have. A well-groomed personal appearance and neat work are also required of them.

Where can I work?

Private secretaries are employed by nearly all organisations in the private as well as the public sectors of the economy.

Secretaries with good technical competence and a sound knowledge of business and office administration, can be promoted on merit to more responsible and senior positions, for example, office managers, heads of administrative services departments or administrative managers.

Can I work for myself in this occupation?

Private secretaries can work on consultation basis for various companies.

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