Successfully plan your year ahead!

Posted On 12 Jan 2024

Successfully plan your year ahead!

12 Jan 2024
Welcome to January's edition of The Assistants Newsletter!

The Assistants Newsletter

Welcome to January's edition of The Assistants Newsletter!

Welcome back and Happy New Year! We hope you had a relaxing, festive time with family and friends. The team at EST10 certainly delighted in our time off!

We are excited to see what 2024 brings and look forward to sharing it with you. We have most of our big picture plans in place, including our Masterclasses and events. If you haven’t already, please register for our complimentary monthly Masterclasses, everyone is welcome – please feel free to share with friends and colleagues. See you there!

To kick off 2024 we are looking at how to plan the year ahead. Whilst am sure your major plans are in place, January is a great time to finesse and tweak!

Much Love,


Successfully plan your year ahead!

The return to the office often brings a mixed sense of excitement, apprehension and the unknown! If you have been fortunate enough to have a few weeks off, it can take a few days to get back into the swing of things. It is normal, so don’t be too hard on yourself if the cogs are taking a little longer to wind up! Assistants are renowned for their organisational prowess, so what better time to do this than at the start of the year!

Review and reflect: Spend time analysing the previous year and we mean a decent amount of time – not a cursory 10 minutes. Reflection requires digging deeper, pondering and self-awareness. What worked well and what didn’t? Given a lot of these items might sit within your responsibility, what could you have done differently and better? For those items that didn’t sit directly within your realm of responsibility, what part did you play that could have changed the outcome for the better? What can you do to pre-empt them happening again? Predicting pitfalls now, allows time to proactively mitigate negative impacts and stress further down the line.

Upskill:The business environment is rapidly evolving at a pace we have never witnessed before. For all employees, this means being relevant and current with skills. This is especially so for Assistants and using technology better. January is an opportune time to upskill on the ‘quick wins’, skills or knowledge acquisition – it might mean researching, subscribing, or reading about a particular industry, innovation, new development, or an online skills course. Whatever is relevant to your boss and the organisation you work for. January is equally a great time to map ahead of time courses, conferences, and any other longer-term learning projects, for yourself and the greater team. Otherwise, the year slips by and other priorities take over!

School holidays:This may not directly affect you, or your Executives. Even if it doesn’t you can be sure some of your clients, colleagues, or even suppliers will be impacted. Adding all the relevant dates to your diary will assist for better scheduling. If your organisation is global or you deal internationally, be across those holidays as well. For example, booking a board meeting, or another large gathering in the middle of school holidays, might see a lower attendance. Of course, plan the same for all public holidays as well.

Board Meetings: These are usually mapped out well in advance and it is likely you already know when the next one is. If not here is your reminder! Once you have the key dates, work back, diarising when to send the invitations, agendas, follow ups etc. This helps the process to be seamless, everyone knowing where they need to be and what they need. Don’t forget to add time the day after for writing up minutes, distributing action points and conducting any other follow up activities. Board meetings are events that rarely move once scheduled, they do however often change location, especially in larger businesses. Meticulous travel, logistics and even dietary planning is required for each event.

Annual leave: Whilst everyone requests their leave at different times, it is worth asking your Executives and other key people when they hope to take their annual leave. They could have had discussions over the Christmas break, and this helps to plan for everyone. Pencilling in early helps with scheduling throughout the year. Don’t forget to put your own annual leave in too!! You might need to sort your own cover, something else worth thinking about well in advance of your leave dates. This might mean updating handover manuals- another poignant January task for you and all administrative employees in the organisation!

Key Dates:At the start of the year, check that all the recurring dates from the previous year have been transitioned across, including any regular payments or invoices that should automatically roll over? If your office celebrates staff birthdays and anniversaries, are they all diarised, including any new staff members? If your business has annual performance reviews, these along with the correct dates for sending relevant paperwork or reminders need to be added. Do you have annual contracts that need attention at certain dates, likes leases etc- allow ample time for reviewing. Finally, look at any personal items for your boss; family birthdays or major events, recurring medical appointments, car services, insurance renewals or any regular events for children.

Whilst there is always more planning, we hope these pointers help you assist you in kick starting a successful 2024 – good luck!

Successfully plan your year ahead!

What’s new….
4-6 Bligh Street, Sydney

Alfie’s reinvents the idea of the steakhouse as a place of opulence and excess with a stripped back, irreverent and rule breaking bar.


EST10 Hot Job

Executive Assistant
$125,000 package
Sydney CBD

For those seeking a role that goes beyond the traditional Executive Assistant position, this opportunity is tailored to surpass expectations.


Most read this month

CEO WORLD Magazine. Its time to rethink the gender negotiation game. By Roxanne Calder.

The ability to negotiate is a necessary life skill. At its core, negotiating, requires a firm belief in what you are asking for. You need to be well-prepared, understanding intricately the pain points of the other party, possible fall out and consequences.


Upcoming events

Colleen Callander and Shannah Kennedy.

ELEVATE – The Pathway to High Performance and Personal Growth.

12.30pm, Weds 14th February 2024

Colleen Callander is an award-winning former CEO of Sportsgirl and Sussan with 30 years of experience, and Shannah Kennedy is a master life coach and life planner with over 20 year of experience. Together, they specialise in High Performance Living and Leadership and share a singular mission, to elevate humans!


Adrian Baillargeon.

Performance Energy.

12.30pm, Weds 13th March 2024

Rarely do we give ourselves permission to pause and think about what we need in our lives to perform at our best in the workplace. We live in a world of higher uncertainty, stress and higher fatigue levels than ever before. Learn the strategies that will help you understand what you need to do to maintain your energy levels!



And something for you....

Sydney Festival

Embracing the art of summer since 1977, Sydney Festival is a city-wide celebration of culture, creativity and the questioning mind. From the streets to the beach, in stately theatres and in secret basements, it animates locations across Greater Sydney with a trailblazing free and ticketed program of theatre, music, dance, visual art and all the experimental in-between places of live performance.

As a dedicated commissioner of new Australian works, Sydney Festival showcases our nation’s diverse storytellers to the world, whilst drawing the world’s finest artists to Sydney.

And something for you....

About the author
Roxanne Calder
Managing Director

As Founder and Managing Director at EST10, Roxanne has an all-encompassing role that includes building and growing the business, as well as actively recruiting and consulting.

After completing a Bachelor’s Degree at Monash University, Roxanne began her recruitment career with renowned recruiter Julia Ross. From there, Roxanne worked in HR and recruitment with a number of global players and boutique businesses throughout Australia, the UK, Singapore and Hong Kong for over 20 years. She has been responsible for managing large teams and projects, implementing RPO models, managing and assisting businesses to an IPO and assisting companies in setting up their recruitment teams and processes.

Following completion of her MBA at the Australian Graduate School of Management, Roxanne launched EST10 in July 2010. In doing so, she hoped to combine the flexibility and high touch service levels of boutique agencies with the structure and strategy afforded to larger firms. Roxanne believes in high-touch, high-care consulting and is always on the lookout for consultants that share this vision of recruitment.