Happy Administrative Professional’s Day–Not!

Here’s to another bogus Hallmark holiday, designed to make secretaries, receptionists and admins feel better about their crappy jobs!

Many companies don’t even observe this day.   But every time it rolls around, admins gnash their teeth.  Not because we didn’t get flowers, or the boss didn’t take us out to lunch.

Flowers don’t last.  Boss lunches are awkward.

Impending death in a tissue wrap.

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s because Administrative Professional’s Day is often seen as a bone that is tossed to some of the hardest-working people in an organization.  Some bosses will never see them as more than peons.  Ever.

Here’s what many of us would like instead:

Don’t send us flowers; pay us a wage we can live on.

Your personal errands are not our jobs.  Your valet or your housekeeper can pick up your dry cleaning.  We’re here to do actual work for the company.

Stop requiring 3-5 years of experience for a minimum wage job.

Stop laying us off so you can hire incompetent weenies at a cheaper rate of pay and then complaining that nothing is done right.

Stop saying “You’re the most important person in this office—we couldn’t live without you!” and then treating us like poo.

Stop denying us promotions.  Some of us would like to stay with a company where we can grow.  It’s a real pain to have to start all over in a new job just to gain skills.  Many times we end up stuck in the same boring chair.  Our enthusiasm withers.  And you wonder why.

To all the bosses out there who appreciate their admins, pay them well, give them adequate time off so they don’t burn out, encourage their professional growth, and otherwise treat their workers like human beings instead of assets, I give you this:

Image: Semnoz / Wikimedia Commons

You make us happy and we’ll work our butts off for you.


7 thoughts on “Happy Administrative Professional’s Day–Not!

  1. I’m fortunate to have – FINALLY – gotten into a job that actually appreciates what I do. And while it’s not really what I want to be doing with my life, it’s finally better than where I have been to this point. The boss probably doesn’t even realize that Admin Professionals Day is on the calendar, but that’s okay.

    Still, I spent a decade working in conditions that are pretty much just what you were writing about. So I feel your pain too.

  2. Actually, Administrative Professionals Day was founded by the National Secretaries Association, 62 years ago. Originally, it was called “Professional Secretaries Day” back then, and its purpose was to acknowledge all the secretarial and clerical people who worked behind the scenes, whose work was often overlooked. Hallmark only got into creating greeting cards for it about 10 years ago.

    Let’s face it – some employers value their admin staff, and some don’t. Our employers should let us know that our work is appreciated frequently, not just once a year. When you do work for an employer like that, you want to never leave them!

    Next March, I suggest you check out the website of The International Association of Administrative Professionals (www.iaap-hq.org) for a chapter near you. Most of the chapters celebrate APW with seminars, conferences, and other training. Many employers will pay for it, because it’s REAL training – things we can use on our jobs. The events are open to the public, and are usually very good.

  3. Hello Elizabeth, I just ran across this blog for the first time today and I’ve enjoyed all that I have read so far. This particular post struck an interest with me because back when I was an assistant —I really hated the idea of admin’s professional’s day. So I got a kick out of your title! 🙂 Good article too!

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