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How to futureproof your Assistant profession during the rise of AI

futureproof Assistant role

‘Generative AI’ has become a buzz term circling the assistant world. AI tools such as Chat GPT have become arguably ‘conventional’, with industry experts warning us of its disruptive force. According to World Economic Forum research, AI is projected to create around 97 million new jobs, countering workforce displacement concerns.

So, why in the business support world are we left feeling on edge about the emergence of AI? And, how can we combat it? Evie Courtier at SecsintheCity, the UK’s leading job site for PAs, EAs, and other business support professionals, answers questions that worry many Assistants.

Is my Assistant profession under threat?

AI, in the form of automation and language processing, is rendering certain tasks more efficient than those completed by the human hand. Whilst it may seem daunting, it’s welcome to note that AI is designed to augment our working capabilities, and not replace them in their entirety. Roles that are susceptible are those which include repetitive tasks and datacentric duties. Yet vulnerability doesn’t equate to obsolescence, it allows for upskilling and development.

How can you futureproof your profession?

Change is inevitable when choosing to adopt new technologies, yet as an employee it’s easy to feel ill-equipped in terms of your confidence in approaching AI tools. A certified way of futureproofing your employability, is to embrace change, communicate, and upskill yourself. With innovative AI emerging from the woodwork, an open mindset allows you to reap the benefits of AI. Asking questions and reframing your thinking around the challenges of AI will help in the adjustment of new technologies. For employers, a widespread concern is individuals’ lack of flexibility, and desire to adopt new technological structures. Successful PAs or EAs will often correlate pro-activity to the remit of their daily grind.

With this in mind, adapting to new technologies and emerging AI platforms, should not faze business support professionals. Upgrading your calibre of skills will stand you in good stead for future employability. Whether it’s by utilising company-approved AI tools, developing a culture that is open to change, or conducting AI training programmes. In the face of technological disruptions, it’s wise to remind yourself of the multitude of transferable skills you have at your disposal.

Whilst technical expertise brings value, it’s the soft skills that make us indispensable within a team. Problem-solving, communication, creativity, and critical thinking are all skills embedded within Assistant work. It’s also the expertise that enables us to navigate challenges, collaborate effectively, and be open to learning new techniques. Having confidence in your ability to conduct an ever-changing role is the foundation to overcoming AI anxiety. By embracing a new mindset, having a curiosity to learn, and accepting the new technologies coming our way, those working within the assistant landscape should feel safeguarded within their role.


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