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Be the Ultimate Assistant: A celebrity assistant's secrets to working with any high-powered employer Paperback – June 20, 2008

4.8 out of 5 stars 155 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Bonnie's book is such a great accomplishment! She fully describes the often misunderstood role and day-to-day experiences of a celebrity assistant, which most definitely translates to the world of all administrative professionals. Any individual who interacts with high-powered people - or wants to - will truly benefit from the information that Bonnie shares in this book. --Hope Rippere, former CEO Communications Manager, Hewlett-Packard Company --Hope Rippere

Be the Ultimate Assistant is a must-read for assistants and employers alike! Bonnie's years of experience with Olympia have served to create the ULTIMATE resource for any assistant looking to develop a successful and long-lasting relationship with an employer. An employer myself, this invaluable guide provided me with the perfect blueprint to follow in my search for a personal assistant. Bonnie clearly demonstrates the do's and dont's of a productive rapport in bite-sized and entertaining anecdotes, and in-depth personal experiences. This book finds it greatest success by debunking the myth of the employment hierarchy by spelling out the reality of every successful working relationship - teamwork. --Anonymous employer-New York, NY --Anonymous

If you are interested in becoming a professional assistant, this is a must-read. It defines all the skills you'll need to be successful, gives a historical and future look at the profession, and includes humorous anecdotes that will keep you entertained. The paradox is that it is both an instruction manual and a page turner. The author's realistic approach can inspire those who were meant to be a successful professional assistant. As a former NY personal assistant and current certified Microsoft Office Specialist Master Instructor supporting assistants, my specific interest in reading the book was to learn more about the technology challenges professional assistants face. Not only did I discover an author who has undeniable expertise, but one with a sense of purpose to help others succeed in this extremely competitive area. While many people in the business hoard information, Bonnie demonstrates a refreshing collaborative approach. --Vickie Evans CEO Redcape Company- Dallas, TX --Vickie Sokol Evans

About the Author

Ms. Low-Kramen is a passionate spokesperson on issues concerning professional assistants and enjoys setting the record straight. As a result, she has been quoted in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, NY Post, and Vanity Fair, and interviewed on Entertainment Tonight and Good Day New York among others. She is a guest speaker at assistant conferences in throughout the US, Canada and the UK. Ms. Low-Kramen worked to create NYCA in 1996 with seven fellow celebrity assistants. It is the only organization of it s kind on the East Coast. In 2003, she was honored by her peers for career achievement at a ceremony in Beverly Hills. Ms. Low-Kramen's work with Olympia Dukakis has included close involvement with the Academy Award win for Moonstruck, the 1988 presidential campaign of Michael Dukakis, travel around the world to places such as Sydney, London, Alaska and Prague and numerous awards shows and benefits. A New Jersey native, Ms. Low-Kramen holds a B.A. degree from Rutgers University in English and Theatre. She worked in public relations and marketing for not-for-profit theatres in Chicago, Atlanta, and Houston before returning to New Jersey where she became Public Relations Director at Olympia Dukakis Whole Theatre in Montclair, NJ. Her latest venture in sharing her knowledge is as the instructor of weekend workshops for assistants in major cities in the US.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 174 pages
  • Publisher: Nk Publications; 5th Edition edition (June 20, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0976326817
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976326816
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (155 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #101,280 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Susan E. Gittens on October 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
The Ultimate Assistant by Bonnie Low-Kramen was detailed enough for those of us who really are looking to continue as Executive Assistants. It emphasizes the importance of intelligence, thinking and getting jobs done without much help and just really working hard to research tools needed in a job that you are really on your own to do. It is all about working independently and using all resources including other key people to get the job done. I like the great examples of doing unexpected jobs and the "out of your way" challenges and hurdles that come up and have to be overcome in order to get it right for the executive. That is the true challenge of good executive assistants. To find a way no matter how.
I liked how the book is spersed with interesting and valuable inspirational quotes between chapters. It's a good book to keep at hand and reread.
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Format: Kindle Edition
If you're a seasoned professional you'll find this a quick read. Nothing ground breaking ... but solid information on common sense problem solving, standard organizational structure and etiquette best practices. Great refresher tool - thin on recent developments in the field. Available in the Kindle Lending Library at no cost.
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Format: Paperback
Bonnie is right on point with this book. The Book "is a one of a kind for the Personal Assisting industry". Really. The stories she shares are great examples and so common in the industry. She makes the reader feel as if they were working with her and Olympia. Bonnie gives good pointers for people looking to break into this field as well as good contacts for internet searches, recruiters, and unique and cool gift ideas. This is a good desk reference book. Buy it and you will not be sorry.... I love it...
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Format: Kindle Edition
“Be The Ultimate Assistant” by Bonnie Low-Kramen, is an excellent reading not only for all the professional Assistants, or aspiring Assistants, but also for everyone who wants to know more about how a relationship employer/assistant can be successful , earning each other, even if professional and personal lines often cross if you spend most of the time together every day. Bonnie IS really the Ultimate Assistant, and through this book she shares the importance of working hard to get the jobs done, the value of seeking excellence and improvement, solving the most unusual problems at the same time and with a positive attitude. All the qualities, the skills and the practical information for being a professional Assistant – outstandingly described and suggested in 18 chapters - are an extraordinary helpful tool and, above all, they clearly illustrate the assistant’s work, which is often misunderstood and underestimated. I love how this impressive writing encourages, educates and inspires all of us by showing great examples and offering useful and detailed suggestions.
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Format: Paperback
Whether you are an aspiring professional assistant or celebrity assistant, I recommend this book. It is full of info for those new to an administrative career. However, I've been in the profession for over 20 years, so this book served as motivation for me to kick it up a notch!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I kept seeing Bonnie Low-Kramen's comments on LinkedIn forums and based on the wisdom she shared there, I decided to investigate her book. As Estate Managers working with high net worth and celebrities, we are frequently placed in "assistant” roles and in actuality, we have to be a "jack-of-all-trades". I bought her book because I felt that she would have excellent advice and tips that would help me in my career and I got far more than I expected. She wrote the book in a clear and concise “voice” that I could almost hear without ever knowing how she spoke. She shared delightful, heart-warming stories and many subtle nuances and insider tips that you will not see in any typical training class. The book was filled with so many resources that I would consider this a valuable reference for assistants at all levels. Her compilation of resources is worth the price of the book alone! I recommend buying several copies of this book and sharing with friends and colleagues about how to become and how to find the ultimate assistant as well. This book should be standard issue for every office assistant.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ms. Kramen imparts wisdom for the person looking to be assist a celebrity in particular, but also for anyone looking to embark on the the service professional path. She speaks about the traits that help and hinder the assistant, ways to perform the job better, as well as how to land the perfect job (whether you're already in the profession or not). Even so, I believe much of what Ms. Kramen discusses can be applied to any profession - but most notably to those of us in helping careers.

As a former executive assistant and newer recipient of administrative assistance, I found this book immensely helpful. In fact, I even found myself feeling wistful of my days as an assistant - for those of drawn to this work, it most certainly is a labor of love! I wish I had known about this book when I was in the field, as I suspect my career choices might have steered me in another direction! I look forward to sharing this with all of the employees and service providers in my life!

I can't recommend this book highly enough!
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