The Capital Letter

September 2020

Welcome from our Group President

Kia ora koutou,

I’d like to ask you all, how are you doing?  In your personal life, with your whanau, your colleagues and in your team?

This month we have Gerard Hoffman, a Clinical Social Worker, Counsellor, and Trainer in private practice, as guest speaker at tonight's face-to-face Group meeting, talking about “Supporting Staff Through Change & Transition such as a time of Covid 19”.  Gerard presented to our group last year and we had a turn out crowd! Come join us and please ensure you follow Urban Hub’s COVID guidelines whilst attending this event. Do register; we look forward to seeing you there.

Late last month, our Group Management Team (GMT) met for its annual Strategic Planning Day, facilitated by Claudia Gonzalez Barrio. Claudia was just what we needed to stay on course!  We discussed forward planning; how we could improve what we offer our members by way of topics and themes throughout the year; what form our offerings could take and when, supported by presenters and Newsletter articles in a more cohesive way. We also worked on how we can make our GMT meetings more strategic and less process driven, as time is always precious for our GMT members who volunteer their time to the Group.

Keep reading...

September Group Meeting

News from our GMT

New Meeting Coordinator!

We are very pleased to announce that at our Group Management Team (GMT) meeting this week, Paddy Roe was voted in as our newest GMT member.

Paddy is Office Manager of the Firstgas Wellington CBD Branch, and Personal Assistant to two General Managers. He's passionate about Administration, supporting others and guiding people to be the best they can be, through great systems and innovative ideas for long term, ongoing, positive change.

In his spare time you'll find Paddy listening to his ultimate idols, ABBA (or any music for that matter) with his adored cat, Flynn Willis Roe.

Welcome to the team, Paddy, it's great to have you on board!

Paddy takes over as Meeting Coordinator from Emma Brown who has been covering, and is also our Membership Coordinator. Thanks again, Emma!

Paddy, new boy on the block (his words)!

Flynn, pleased as punch with his owner's new role.

Wellington Group Member Awards

Have you or someone you know shared a useful admin tip or trick that's made all the difference? Are you the type of person with the drive and enthusiasm to achieve results? Perhaps you have a colleague who has encouraged and empowered you to be a better administrator?

If you answered yes (or even thought, maybe...), we really encourage you to make a nomination. Go on, pat yourself on the back if need be - you deserve it! 

Nominations close 30 September 2020.

Doreen Smart Scholarship

The Doreen Smart National Scholarship (named after AAPNZ’s founder) was established in 1997 for training and learning opportunities which contribute to members’ personal and/or professional development. National scholarships are awarded once a year to a maximum of $1,000. Find out more here. 

This year's applications close 20 November 2020. 

Life as a Virtual Assistant

At our August Group meeting, Broni Carey talked to us about how she set up her own business (Virtual Solutions NZ), the life of a virtual assistant, and what it was like to move from employee to business owner.

Broni's presentation certainly had many of us contemplating what it would take to set up a new business, work for ourselves, for the hours that we set and be responsible for sourcing that work. Very thought-provoking indeed!

After hearing about Broni's experience, we thought it an oportune time to highlight an AAPNZ member who also runs her own VA business. Sherie Pointon, National Social Media Officer, tells us how she got started as a VA, and how her AAPNZ membership helped her along the way...

Tell us about your company

Admin Advantage offers a wide range of services. From training solutions for admin teams to one-on-one mentoring and coaching. I have worked with some of the big four accounting firms, through to admin teams within schools. I have spoken for events like AAPNZ Group meetings through to international events such as the Executive and Personal Assistants Association (EPAA).

At this year's EPAA virtual conference over 300 people attended my session. One of Admin Advantage’s point of difference is that I also take contract administration positions to keep my skills current.

What drove you to start Admin Advantage?

Admin Advantage came about as I saw a gap in the market for training, assessment and consultancy on the business support profession by someone who is a business support professional. I was frustrated attending courses and events being told how to do my job by the trainer when that person had never been an EA. I spoke at length with Eth Lloyd, AAPNZ Life Member and my mentor, about the move. At this time Eth was looking at retiring from being an assessor for the business administration qualifications so the timing for both of us was right.

The final push that I needed came when my close friend prompted me to take the plunge – her exact words were “I’m sick of hearing about it, just go and do it already!” Sometimes I think that we need to have that external cheerleader that has an unswerving belief in us to help us see the reality of opportunities.

Read more

New Member

A very warm welcome to

Ursula Wiest

Member Anniversaries

Brenda Peryer

Celebrates 7 years' membership

Executive Secretary Magazine

Remember that as an AAPNZ member you have access to the Association's Executive Secretary Magazine subscription.

Executive Secretary Magazine is a global training magazine dedicated to the professional development needs of senior and aspiring administrative professionals.

You can access the Magazine (including the entire back catalogue) in the 'Members Only Resources' section of the AAPNZ website.  Click here and you'll be prompted to login.

Upcoming events

October Group Meeting


with guest speaker Sara Warnock

    •   20 October
    •   5:30pm to 7pm
    •   The Oaks

November Group Meeting

Networking Event

with In House Catering

    •   18 November
    •   Time TBA
    •   Venue TBA

Sponsor Profile

Urban Hub Serviced Offices

Urban Hub, our gracious hosts for our August and September Group meetings, are situated in the heart of Wellington (Lambton Quay). They offer affordable, flexible, serviced office space, meeting and training rooms, reception services, 24-hour access, a cafe and more.

All packages can be tailored to suit exactly what you need, hence giving you the professional image you need while staying within your budget. Get in touch with Myan or Ajita for more information.

Thanks as always to ALL our sponsors – we couldn't do it without you!

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