There’s certain key phrases every PA should know: “Yes.” (Except when the answer is No.) “It won’t happen again.” “It’s Thursday. Yes, payroll checks are coming today.”
Here’s another one to add to your quiver: “I’ll look into that.”
Just like your boss doesn’t want to hear your excuse/reason1 for screwing up, she also doesn’t want to hear “I don’t know.” She wants an answer to whatever her question is.
Do something about it. You hold the entirety of human knowledge in your hand.
By saying, “Let me research that” or “I’ll find that out for you,” you are absolutely implying that you don’t know the answer. But the point is, you’re going to actively resolve that issue, hopefully as quickly as possible.
The problem with saying, “I don’t know” is that you’re adding an extra step. The one and only response you’ll get is, “Then go find out.” Just skip ahead to doing what she’s going to ask you to do, anyway.
I hate the word “proactive,” but it actually applies here. This is an opportunity to show the coordinator or 1st AD that you’re always ahead of them, always ready to solve any problem.
You’re taking a negative (not knowing the answer to a question) and turning it into a positive (being the kind of PA who springs into action immediately).
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Have you seen the cool, new TAPA t-shirts? You should totally get one.
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If you haven’t been reading the Hollywood Juicer, you really should.
“Learning to Work” relates to the topic above. It’s all about those crucial early years in the business.
And, sadly, “Enough is Enough” is about yet another tragedy caused by the long hours television series submit us to.