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Meet Chief of Staff Andrea Lockett

Andrea brings over two decades of experience to help her clients meet high-level goals, improve employee satisfaction, and implement the right technology.

Key takeaways:

  • Andrea has over 20 years of experience as a trusted partner and right-hand to CEOs & Founders
  • She helps companies address challenges, like those caused by the shift to remote work, burnout, and building culture in a globally distributed workforce
  • Andrea uses technology as a force multiplier to allow small teams to accomplish big goals with limited resources
  • Skills like organization, time efficiency, humility, and emotional intelligence are important for chiefs of staff

Meet Andrea Lockett, an expert chief of staff at Chiefly Consultants

Andrea has over two decades of experience and came to Chiefly after working for years in financial services. She has always been the right hand to the CEO, whether as an executive assistant or administrative director. She became accustomed to handling both the personal and professional lives of these executives, becoming a sort of CEO-extender.

An important part of a chief of staff’s role is the ability to take things off the plate of the business leader so they can focus on other initiatives, like building their vision or the direction of the organization. Andrea learned how to do that while ensuring project management is taken care of, assessing which groups were under-resourced, and getting rid of silos. In short, she made sure teams were aligned and moving toward common business goals.

Andrea naturally excels at this role. She loves making order out of chaos and helping organizations thrive. She combines efficiency and experience to increase productivity overall. Over time, she successfully turned these skills into a career with Chiefly.

How Andrea impacts high-level goals for companies

Over the last few years, many companies have shifted to a globally distributed culture. It’s hard to hold annual meetings and address burnout when everyone is working remotely. People have really struggled with their work-life balance, and it leads to disconnects in the culture.

Andrea has helped companies deal with these modern challenges. She has guided companies to reconnect with the voice of their employees in order to establish more nuanced leadership. She meets with key people in each organization, holds weekly leadership team meetings, and ensures clear role definitions across the board. She sees how important it is to ask staff what they need to feel successful.

Employee turnover is reduced when staff members are satisfied and the company emphasizes wellness. They are relieved that someone is finally listening to them and giving them a voice. People need to feel seen and valued for morale to improve.

To ensure these kinds of initiatives are successful, Andrea needs buy-in from everyone in the organization. By holding bi-weekly meetings, leadership is always aware of how people are feeling and what’s most important to each team. This approach builds trust so people can be open and transparent about their experiences.

Using technology as a force multiplier

Part of Andrea’s work as a chief of staff is ensuring each team and organization has access to the right technology resources. Sometimes implementing one simple tool can make all the difference in efficiency. The right tech tools can help teams perform better when they have more limited resources. 

Embracing technology also helps Andrea take time-consuming tasks off the plate of the CEO. When they can let go of tasks they don’t need to be doing and focus more on strategic planning, the business starts to experience organic growth that’s more sustainable.

One of Andrea’s first steps when she comes into an organization is identifying systems of record and determining:

  • If there are redundancies
  • What the adoption rate is
  • Whether there’s something better out there in the market
  • How systems can be better integrated

Right away, this information is valuable to the organization. She gives them the right tools, helps implement them, and establishes training opportunities so everyone understands how the technology will be used. Employees know why it’s being adopted and are more amenable to using it.

Helping with recruiting and hiring

A big pain point for many companies Andrea works with is the hiring process. She has a lot of experience getting to know a company’s infrastructure – how all the departments work together and what initiatives are top priority. She learns how to help them find the right people, considering talent and personality. Like an orchestra conductor, she knows how to make each section stronger, with the right leads guiding each one, to create beautiful music.

Great hiring starts with the job description. She makes sure everything is clear and nothing is ambiguous. The job needs to be necessary, and the description should be powerful and accurate. She also knows how to read between the lines in resumes. What’s not written there is sometimes just as important as what is.

The entire team should be involved in the interviewing process, according to Andrea. New hires need to be evaluated for the cultural fit component, and only by including the people they’ll be working with can the team stay cohesive and successful.

What are the most important skills for a chief of staff?

By starting her career as an executive assistant, Andrea was able to develop time efficiency and organizational skills early. These competencies are crucial for a chief of staff, since they probably have multiple clients and projects at once. They need to be self-directed as individuals, so these skills are vital.

Chiefs of staff should also have a curious mindset, almost like professional students. They should always want to learn how to do something better. Andrea is always researching new technologies and thinking about how they can help the organizations she works with.

This curious spirit helps with humility and emotional intelligence, two additional soft skills that are a must for a chief of staff. Andrea takes the perspective that she doesn’t know everything, but she can help you get the answer. 

At the end of the day, Andrea is a creator of solutions. She harnesses creativity and encourages CEOs to bring in other perspectives that may be valuable to them. This enables her to help them achieve their life’s purpose by improving their business. She loves getting behind their mission and becoming just as passionate about it as they are.

Ready to work with a chief of staff like Andrea?

If all these accomplishments sound exactly like what your business needs, it’s time to work with a chief of staff from Chiefly Consultants. You can be paired with an experienced professional like Andrea who is ready to get to know your business and help you achieve your goals.

Contact Chiefly today to get started with a free consultation.

 

 

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