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Skills You'll Need to Get Hired
Every celebrity personal assistant will have various duties that are specific to the profession of the person they're working for, but the following are some basics that you should not be without. And don't forget, the more you have to offer an employer, the more likely they are to hire you, and the more you're likely to get paid.
Your celebrity doesn't care how you get something done so long as you get it done. From getting the florist to work all night to getting the concierge to keep his mouth shut, celebrity personal assistants need strong skills of persuasion to be able to work the 'small miracles' stars seem to require on a daily basis.
As a celebrity personal assistant, you are at least part miracle-worker, and this requires being able to convince others to help you out when you need it. While this may come naturally to some people, others will need to learn techniques and practice them in order to be persuasive when your celebrity needs something.
A lot of persuasive communication is psychological, and involves understanding the needs, motivation and drives of others in order to convince them that whatever you're suggesting is in their best interests. There are tons of theories about how the best way to go about persuading people is; the most important thing is to find a technique that works for you.
Anyone who has a background in sales, politics, law or psychology may already have many of these skills, having used them on a daily basis or studied them in school. In fact, if you are interested in this subject you may be able to take a single course in interpersonal communications at your local college as a night course or as part of a degree program.
Style and Etiquette Skills
You may want to brush up on style and etiquette skills, even if it's as simple as how to dress at different functions. As a celebrity personal assistant you'll be expected to interact and move comfortably in the realm of wealth and fame. You may end up attending movie premieres, art openings, etc. with your celebrity, or he or she may expect you to plan a party of their own (see Section 2.3.1 of the guide for tips on this subject).
Remember that you will often be the first point of contact for people who wish to get in touch with your celebrity, and as their representative, your appearance and demeanor must be impeccable. Your celebrity may even ask for your advice on social interaction, and as their assistant, you'd better either know the answer or have a quick and effective way of finding out.
Etiquette and style knowledge may even help you in interview situations, and overall, they are an asset to anyone's skill set. Take some time to familiarize yourself with some of the etiquette resources listed in the guide and bookmark them for future reference. You will probably want to read at least one book on the subject from start to finish as well, so you are not caught off guard.
One warning about your personal appearance: it is generally advised that celebrity personal assistants and other types of 'household managers' try to maintain a look that is neat and classy without being alluring or attractive. You don't want to steal attention away from your celeb (nor should you try to!) and also, the 'significant other' of your celebrity may experience jealousy, especially if you are the opposite sex of your celebrity-or at least of the sex he or she is attracted to!
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by John C. Havens
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