OPSA is a SAQA recognised professional body for all administrative professionals in South Africa

10 Questions and a Selfie: Onica Mlangeni

What is your full name?

Mmakgano Onica Helen Mlangeni

What is your professional job title?

Personal Assistant

What does a typical day in your life look like?

  • Arrive at work discuss the days meeting with the Boss after making sure that the office is ready and everything is in place for him to start the day.
  • Following up on outstanding matters and assigning / re-assigning work to team members and making sure that responses are done.
  • Managing the diary and obtaining briefing notes for the next day meetings.
  • Keep track of the diary and the Boss’s whereabouts throughout the day to ensure that he is running on time and that we don’t miss anything (whether emails or meetings).

What does it mean to you to have achieved your Professional designation as an Office Professional?

It means I have worked hard and I still have to work hard to make sure that what I have achieved is testament to the hard work that I have put in. It means that this is not a Profession to be taken lightly.

Finish this sentence: The ideal way to start my day is …

… with a can do attitude and a promise to see solutions and not problems. To put a smile in someone’s face and make their day better and brighter.

What are the most important tools, programs and systems you use for your work?

  • Outlook (diary management)
  • In house travel booking system
  • Word
  • In house meeting planning system
  • Phone – teleconference

What are your favourite apps and why?

  • Whatsapp – a quick way to communicate with your Boss in case of emergencies
  • Hopper – an app for finding best prices for travel (personal travel for the Boss)
  • Facebook – to follow the news and what is happening around us

How do you deal with conflicts or problems in the office?

In a calm manner – I always try to find out facts and see the situation from the other person’s point of view – it never pays to react emotionally.

Do you have some advice for aspiring Office Professionals?

  • Stay true to yourself and be humble and remember your Blessings.
  • Treat everyone with the same respect irrespective of their position in the Organization.
  • Remember that we all started small and be helpful and never make anyone feel as if they don’t matter, everybody matters.
  • Ask questions – to learn and to get clarity and understanding.

Finish this sentence: My favourite thing about being an Office Professional is … 

… the difference we bring to an individual, by being the Spiritual Advisor, Shoulder to cry on, and legs to fetch water for someone who is not feeling well.

The variety of the position and being able to provide support to my Boss (or anyone who needs assistance) to enable him to excel by taking care of all of the little staff.

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