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FAQs: Can You Determine If I Need a Chief of Staff or an Executive Assistant?

Chiefly Consultants will work with you to understand whether you need the high-level services of a chief of staff or day-to-day help with administrative tasks from an executive assistant.

Key takeaways:

  • A chief of staff and executive assistant both assist the CEO, but chiefs of staff take on more high-level concerns and duties, like creating and implementing strategy.
  • Chiefly Consultants will get to know your needs and goals and advise you on which role is best, even if that means finding an executive assistant.

We hear this question a lot from potential clients: Can you determine if I need a chief of staff or an executive assistant? 

These two roles can be pretty different within an organization. We’ll help you figure out which option is right for you. This guide covers the key differences between the two and how we’ll work with you if you’re unsure how to move forward.

What’s the difference between a chief of staff and an executive assistant?

Both chiefs of staff and executive assistants assist the CEO, and sometimes executive assistants end up becoming chiefs of staff down the road. 

One key difference between the two roles is being proactive versus reactive. While both can take on these perspectives, chiefs of staff are more proactive – they can anticipate problems and plan for them before they arise. Executive assistants are usually more reactive – they put out fires as they come up. 

A chief of staff works more closely with the CEO than an executive assistant and is brought in on high-level conversations. They really get to know the highs and lows of the business, even becoming the confidant to business leaders. They help out with strategy and more big-picture concerns, whereas an executive assistant usually manages the day-to-day, like scheduling, taking notes, and making phone calls. 

All types of industries can benefit from having a chief of staff, and fast-growing businesses especially see advantages. Chiefs of staff can come in and help you determine what’s causing a hiccup in a process and implement solutions to create a more efficient organization overall.

How Chiefly Consultants helps you determine which role you need

Even though Chiefly Consultants only provides chief of staff services, we still advise potential clients about which role may be right for them at a given moment. That means we’ll let you know if we think an executive assistant would be better for your needs. 

We take this approach because our chiefs of staff have a certain level of skill and expertise, and providing services that align more with an executive assistant would mean our team members might be underutilized. And, we don’t want you to spend money on services you don’t need. We’ll even help you recruit an executive assistant if you need one. 

But, we may talk to you and discover just how much you need the help of a chief of staff. If your business is growing rapidly or you just don’t have time to focus on accomplishing your business goals, a chief of staff can come in and help with creating and implementing strategy, communicating with employees on your behalf, providing feedback, managing workflows, and much more. 

When to contact Chiefly Consultants

Working with Chiefly Consultants gives you access to the expertise your business is missing. Our chiefs of staff are experienced professionals who cater their services to your precise needs. You’ll get the staff help you need on a fractional basis for greater flexibility.

If you’re ready to get started with a chief of staff, or you’re unsure if you need an executive assistant instead, contact Chiefly Consultants today to set up a free consultation with our team.

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