When I’m not bare-knuckle boxing in cage matches, dancing angrily/offending the elderly in the town of Bomont, or watching Adventure Time, I work as a secretary. A few months ago, I would have thought that “secretary” or “administrative assistant” were detailed-enough job descriptions for most of the world to understand what I do for a (meager) living.
Apparently this is not this case. To illustrate the confusion, I present you with the handy meme above.
When running a Google image search of the word “secretary,” one is likely to get a wide array of pictures, not all of which are suitable for work. In fact, I wouldn’t suggest that you run that kind of search at work.
Images you are likely to find in a “Secretary” image search:
- Clip Art depictions of women who are WAY too excited to be working
- Women in collared shirts displaying ample cleavage while wearing thigh highs and/or biting pens in a sexual manner
- Contortionists typing with their feet
- Hillary Clinton
- “Mad Men” characters
Clearly, there’s more confusion surrounding this subject than I had ever realized. In order to clarify for those non-secretaries who are curious about the lives of the administratively adept, here is a list of some of my daily work responsibilities, along with what I consider to be a fair assessment of the tasks’ difficulty levels.
Answering the Phone
Difficulty Level: Trickier than you’d expect
While any idiot can answer the phone in a pleasant voice and correctly state the name of the company, it takes massive amounts of self control to keep calm while regularly being sworn at by angry or impatient clients. Because of my language skills, I also do this in Spanish. (+3 bonus points)
Difficulty Level: Primate
Manager: “Hey, Kaitlin. See that stack of papers? I’d like you to put it in numerical order and then combine it with this even larger stack of papers.”
Kaitlin: *beats head repeatedly against desk*
Difficulty Level: Amorphous blob
Take pieces of mail. Put pieces of mail addressed to specific employee in the box labeled with said employee’s name. Repeat as necessary.
Special Projects/ Filing
Difficulty Level: Some knowledge of Alphabetical order may be required
This could be any number of tasks, be they filing, typing numbers into various and sundry databases, or carrying boxes hither and thither.
Actually, now that I think about it…
…this one seems pretty accurate.
And that’s the way the post-grad cookie crumbles.
My CompliKAITed Life is a column by Kaitlin Marie running on Kate-book.com every other Wednesday at noon. You can read all about Kaitlin’s Zombie Apocalypse plans on her blog Zombies4breakfast.com. Oh, and follow her on Twitter here or on Pinterest here. She pins obsessively.