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The Best Personal Assistant Interview Questions

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Having a superb personal assistant can make all the difference between reaching and maintaining success in your business or not. When you’ve got a million things to juggle at once, complex problems to solve, and a busy timetable to keep up with, doing it all alone is just too much to ask. Therefore, taking the leap of faith to find and hire a top-shelf PA can be an incredibly worthwhile endeavour.

Once you’ve decided you want to hire a personal assistant, asking the right interview questions is imperative to figure out the best fit for you and your custom-tailored business needs.

Here we’ll go over a few of the best personal assistant interview questions.

1. Tell me about a time in your PA career when you've had to deal with a difficult situation.

A prospective PA hire will surely tell you endless stories about times they’ve succeeded in their work, but hearing about their challenges will be the most illuminating when interviewing candidates. Difficult situations are inevitable when looking after all the complex, ever-changing needs of a busy business leader like yourself. Ideally, your potential hire will exhibit calm, flexibility, and rationality in the face of stress and have a strong ability to communicate clearly and directly.

2. Tell me about a time when as a Personal Assistant you've had to deal with a difficult character.

Unfortunately, people can be difficult in any job or industry. Your potential personal assistant is guaranteed to run into a difficult character or two. A competent personal assistant must know to not take things personally when dealing with difficult characters in their professional interactions. Being a PA is not a job for the faint of heart or overly sensitive. Having a keen emotional intelligence is a great attribute to have to accel as a personal assistant, and knowing not to take all things to heart will go a long way in your PA’s ability to weather storms and remain calm in the face of difficult characters.

3. Tell me why you’re interested in specifically working for this company as a PA?

Great PA’s can be the unsung heroes of your success and greatly reduce your stress and headaches as you go about solving complex business problems. When times get rough or the pressure picks up, having a PA that has a deeper “why” or connection to the mission of the company can be key to them sticking through and remaining effective. Their “why” needn’t be overly deep, but some kind of passion or connection to the mission of your business will be greatly more effective than a more basic reason such as “I just need to make money”.

There are many more helpful questions you could ask your potential personal assistant hires, but the most important thing is to identify what attributes you desire in your PA, and craft the questions around these needs. In doing so, you’re sure to find the perfect PA to enhance your productivity, growth, clarity of mind, and overall business success!

If you're a Personal Assistant who is looking for some guidance ahead of an upcoming interview, we have put together a free interview guide which you can download here.