Merge's Blog

Say thank you to your admin professional this week (and always)

If you’re in a position of leadership, then you know that it takes effort and support from others to get things accomplished.  And very often, the unsung heroes in our workplaces are administrative professionals, small, oft-silent armies of people, working behind the scenes to make things happen.  In years past, we called them secretaries, some are referred to as executive assistants, still others are labelled support staff.  Whatever the name, these are the people who keep all the moving parts oiled and the systems and procedures humming.  Since today kicks off Administrative Professionals Week, the question of the day is:

Have you thanked your administrative professionals lately?

Besides the verbal thanks, you may also want to consider something a little bit more special for this week (or perhaps save it for Wednesday which is Administrative Professionals Day).  Believe it or not, food or flowers is not the first choice.  According to a member survey conducted by the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP), an overwhelming majority of support employees much prefer opportunities for learning and growth.  Consider tuition reimbursement and/or a flexible schedule to work towards a degree.  Or paid membership and the option to participate in professional organizations.  If you must buy a “gift”, think about business-related items such as personalized business cards, desktop nameplates, computer hardware and software upgrades, or ergonomically correct accessories.

What are you doing to celebrate Administrative Professionals Week?  Please tell us by adding a Comment below!

P.S. Did you know that there are more than:

  • More than 4.1 million secretaries and administrative assistants and an additional 8.9 million people working in various administrative support roles in the United States
  • More than 475,000 administrative professionals are employed in Canada
  • Millions more administrative professionals working in offices all over the world

[Source: IAAP]


  • I would like to suggest that employers forget flowers and lunch once a year, and instead I would like to suggest that you bring your admins into your teams. Currently a large number of admins sit outside the company team structure – they are not considered “part of the team”.

    By including your admins in your team structure, you ensure that they are in the loop and in possession of all the knowledge and information they need to be productive employees.

    By ensuring your admins are part of the team, you remove the need for an “admin day” because their contributions will be acknowledged in the same manner as the rest of the team – with recognition, responsibility and raises.

    I believe that by keeping your admins seperate you are marginalizing them – in effect, creating a subsection of employees who are treated differently by management and by their co-workers.

    Flowers and lunch once a year mean little to those who are marginalized.

  • You know Bonnie, I have to agree with your perspective! You are absolutely right, admins should be full-fledged (and valuable) members of the team. I guess Admin Day/Week was created because this group is so often not recognized for the immense skills they bring to the table. But I fully acknowledge the point you have made.


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