Secretaries Day in South Africa


René Potgieter receiving her Lifetime Achievement Award from Theo Garrun, Editor of the Star Workplace

Secretarial Association presents first Lifetime Achievement Award to a PA in South Africa

The Professional Association for Secretaries and PAs (PAFSA) presented René Potgieter a PA at First Rand, with the first Lifetime Achievement Award recognising selfless service to the secretarial profession.

At a Gala Lunch, held at Emperors Palace on Secretaries Day, and in front of 200 peers, Rene Potgieter, was recognised and rewarded for her outstanding contribution to the enhancement of the secretarial profession spanning a period of 28 years.

Ana-Maria Valente, head of PAFSA’s EXCO, said: “I have known Ren
é for two decades, and always in her capacity of serving or leading committees. She never turns away from an opportunity to contribute of her time or knowledge if it’s for the good of her peers. I have never seen her ask for anything in return, least of all, for recognition – and that is what makes her truly one of a kind.

“René is always open to asking for help or advice when she herself needs, and always ready to give it when it is asked. PAFSA is honoured to have her as head of its PA of the Year Award, and honoured to count on her experience and expertise when needed. We salute her, and know that she is the best pioneer-recipient of this Lifetime Achievement Award in South Africa.”

The Citation read on the presentation of the Award follows:

PAFSA’s Lifetime Achievement Award

presented on South Africa’s Secretaries day - Wednesday 7 September 2016
to René Potgieter in recognition of a lifetime of selfless service to the secretarial profession in South Africa

René entered the profession in 1978 when she was 19 years of age and decided this was to her career.

This is how her commitment to the profession, and not just to her career, began.

In 1988, she saw an article in the newspaper regarding a meeting of the Secretary Club - ESCSA - which was to be held in Tygerberg, being a regional chapter of the Club.

This caught her attention and she went to the meeting and met two great professionals, Estelle Engelbrecht and Penny Nel, who inspired her to join as a member.

The next year, 1989 the Club’s name was to change to PSA - Professional Secretaries’ Association and she was part of this change.

René worked in Grabouw and lived in Somerset West which did not make it easy to always attend the meetings which were mainly held in Bellville/Durbanville quite a distance away.

Together with a peer, Magda de Kock, who worked for KWV in the Paarl area, she was instrumental in pioneering the opening of the Boland chapter for the PSA in 1990. During this time she also chaired the secretarial in-house forum at the company she worked at.

As a new chapter, getting members was very important and René volunteered to be the membership officer of the first committee. Later, she was elected as vice-chairman of the chapter.

It was during this time in the Boland Chapter - and now in the year in the year 1994 - that she got involved in the PSA’s Secretary of the Year competition at chapter level.

The following year, in 1995, with her husband René relocated to Pretoria, but before she even left the Cape Region, she was elected as Vice-Chairman for the Pretoria chapter.

The following year she was to return to the Cape, but in the capacity of representing the Pretoria Chapter as the PSA was hosting the International Summit for secretarial associations form world-over.

This is where she met Ana-Maria Valente editor of CareerSuccess magazine who later founded PAFSA. This meeting was to eventually result in Career Success becoming the mouthpiece for PSA.

In the year 1996, she was elected to the Secretary of the Year committee which organised the competition in conjunctions with all the chapters country wide.

From committee member she was to be elected the Chair of the committee within one year (1997).

And her role and commitment just kept rising.

The following year, now in 1998 she was elected as Vice-President of the PSA as a whole.

The following year, to no-one’s surprise, she was elected President of the PSA (1999).

Her slogan for her presidency was:  “If you can dream it, you can do it” (Walt Disney) and this slogan has been her signature inspiration all through the years!

In 1999 she was invited to be the guest speaker at the graduation ceremony of the Pretoria Technikon, and to sit on the Advisory Committee for the Office Management and Technology Department, which she was subsequently invited to chair.

The same year, she attended the International Conventions and Education Forum in IAAP annual conference in Portland, USA in representing South Africa. She delivered a speech on the PSA before 2000 secretaries/Admin assistants from all over the world.

Not surprisingly, she was elected the following year, in 2000, as Honorary Life Member of the PSA and was appointed to the financial committee of The PSA.

In 2003, she had the honour of representing The PSA at the 5th International Secretarial Summit which was hosted by The Institute of Qualified Profession Secretaries (IQPS) in London. The summit was attended by 150 people from 18 countries.

And her commitment to the profession continues to be outstanding to this day. Despite holding a full-time job all of this time, René contributes to various initiatives and projects.

  • She was the chairman of the committee putting together a Secretary Helpmate

  • She was involved in the writing of the Blueprint for Secretaries

  • She has been a regular contributor for editorial/articles for the A to Z guides for Secretaries and Office Managers

  • She was a member of the first advisory committees for SSETA on the secretarial profession

  • From 2004 to 2006 was chair of the secretarial in-house forum where she worked.

  • In 2006 PAFSA introduced the PA of the Year® Award and she was invited to head up the team that organised the award. Subsequently, was officially appointed as Chair of the Award and as the Ombudsman of the Judging panel; positions she hold till today.


PAFSA EXCO 011616 7401; PAFSA Facebook


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Information on SECRETARIES DAY 2016 events

Secretaries Day takes place this year on Wednesday 7 September.

The Secretaries Day events organised by PAFSA consist of a Summit, a Gala Lunch and the announcement of South Africa's PA of the Year.
PAFSA's events are taking place at Emperor's Convention Centre, in Gauteng, near OR Tambo Airport.

PAFSA's Secretaries Day theme:
Be the game changer!

The Summit's keynotes combined with glitz and glamour, make for the perfect day out on Secretaries Day!
Delegates network, learn, share, observe, get inspired and updated - all in one go!
Bosses get more than ROI on their sponsorship of this day spent with PAFSA:
Their PAs feel spoilt yet they are in a learning and enriching environment
.


Sequence of events on Secretaries Day:
08h00 to 13h00 The PA Summit
13h00 to 14h45 The Gala Lunch
14h45 to 15h45 The PA of of the Year announcement ceremony

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Information on Secretaries Day 2015 events
Secretaries Day takes place, this year, on Wednesday 2 September.

The Secretaries Day events organised by PAFSA consist of a Summit, a Gala Lunch and the announcement of the PA of the Year.
PAFSA's events are taking place at Emperor's Convention Centre, in Gauteng, near OR Tambo Airport.

PAFSA's Secretaries Day theme:
It's your time to shine!
The theme is based on the International Year of Light.

PAFSA's educationals, combined with glitz and glamour, make for the perfect day out on Secretaries Day!
Delegates network, learn, share, observe, get inspired and updated - all in one go!
Bosses get more than ROI on their sponsorship of this day spent with PAFSA:
Their PAs feel spoilt yet they are in a learning and enriching environment
.


Sequence of events on Secretaries Day:
08h00 to 13h00 The PA Summit
13h00 to 14h45 The Gala Lunch
14h45 to 15h45 The PA of of the Year announcement ceremony

Programme of the Summit
Please click here for the programme
Two Plenary keynote addresses by professional speakers
A Group Discussion Session on career and current job focus areas

Meet the Speakers
This year's keynote speakers are:
Juliette Fourie,CEO of Metrominds, and currently South Africa's Boss of the Year.
Gilan Gork, presenter extraordinaire and owner of a unique mind!
Angelique Ross, travel bookings expert.

* JULIETTE FOURIE
Currently South Africa’s Boss of the Year

Juliette has a passion for people that shows in her everyday life.Juliette creates a FUN working environment by creating a company culture that keeps employees involved and encouraged

She says: “Being a leader requires courage and the most courage one should have is to unpack your own strengths and weaknesses, behaviour and emotion, before trying to understand the people that will follow you. Bosses need to improve the importance they put on themselves. Understanding the self is not an emotional luxury, but a survival necessity in life and business. Self-esteem plays a pivotal role in our ability to take risks, learn new skills, be creative, take feedback, deal with others properly, and be productive and assertive. Bosses in SA should understand their world with its challenges better – with themselves in the centre… to then focus on the right people to create opportunities from these issues and linking them to on-going skills development.”

But what does Juliette have to say about PAs? Come find out.

* GILAN GORK

With over 17 years of experience, Gilan has been dubbed by most of his long-standing corporate clients as the 'Master of Influence' and he is hired by companies around the world as a keynote speaker or as trainer. Gilan imparts valuable and potent skills in being able to read and influence people.

He been featured on dozens of South Africa’s premier television and radio shows and newspapers and magazines. This includes a full feature story on South Africa’s foremost investigative journalism show Carte Blanche.

Gilan is also often hired to engage audiences by demonstrating the power of the mind and the power of influence through his show calledThe Mentalist Experience. This is typically positioned as "intelligent" or "motivational" entertainment, either as a single show or as part of Gilan's unique way of playing master of ceremonies.

Gilan is going to move and shake our minds!

* HECTOR MOTIVATOR
Hector is the MC for the Gala Lunch

He is a professional all-rounder conference/seminar speaker. Has an out most sense of humour. He continues to keep the delegates bubbling with energy, enthusiasm and is totally in command. When working as your MC, Hector motivator has a primary objective - to make your event memorable for all the right reasons. As a professional this is where he succeeds.

* ANGELIQUE ROSS

Angelique Ross is the Director of AskUs Consulting, a company that specialises in travel training for companies.

Angelique has been in the travel industry for 21 years and has travelled extensively around the world gaining experience in all fields of the travel industry. She uses her knowledge to help train companies who do their own travel bookings and helps facilitate company travel policies.

She will guide you on the pitfalls of everyday travel bookings as well as looking at the more humorous side to travel mistakes.


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Information on Secretaries Day 2014

In 2014 the Secretaries Day Event organised by PAFSA is taking place at Emperors Palace in Gauteng.
As 2014 is the International Year of the Secretary and Admin Assistant (IYOTSA) the whole event will be very special.

* Click here
for all the booking information

* Click here for all info on IYOTSA

* Click here for the 2014 Info Pack on PAFSA's Secretaries Day Events



Information on National Secretaries Day

National Secretaries Day in South Africa is celebrated annually on the FIRST Wednesday of September. This date was established by the Executive Secretaries Club of South Africa (ECSA) and Kelly Girl 25 years ago . The head of ECSA and of Kelly Girl was Neville Mackay. ECSA became PSA in 1998.
Today organisations in South Africa celebrate the Day by :
- Giving their secretarial/administrative staff gifts (vouchers/flowers/chocolates etc) or
- Organising a breakfast or in-house lunch or
- Bosses taking out their PAs to a restaurant or
- The executives giving their secretaries/admins a budget to go to a public Secretaries Day function.



Event History and Objectives

This annual event was originally organized in 1952 in the US as "National Secretaries Week" by the National Secretaries Association (now known as the International Association of Administrative Professionals: IAAP) in conjunction with public relations executive Harry Klemfuss and a consortium of office product manufacturers. It was established as an effort to recognize secretaries for their contributions in the workplace, and to attract people to secretarial/administrative careers. In the year 2000, IAAP announced a name change for Professional Secretaries Week and Professional Secretaries Day. The names were changed to Administrative Professionals Week and Administrative Professionals Day to keep pace with changing job titles and expanding responsibilities of today’s administrative workforce. Over the years, Administrative Professionals Week has become one of the largest workplace observances.

The event is celebrated worldwide, bringing together millions of people for community events, educational seminars, and individual corporate activities recognizing support staff with gifts of appreciation. IAAP suggests that employers observe Administrative Professionals Week by providing training for their administrative staff through seminars, continuing education or self-study materials. Another suggestion is to make a commitment toward delegating responsibilities that better utilize the skills of administrative professionals.



Who qualifies as an "Administrative Professional"?

In 2000, IAAP changed Professional Secretaries Week and Professional Secretaries Day to Administrative Professionals Week (APW) and Administrative Professionals Day® (APD) to keep pace with secretaries changing job titles and expanding responsibilities.

Research shows that many workers around the world still hold the “secretary” job title; however, many alternative titles have become more popular, such as administrative assistant, office coordinator, administrative specialist, executive assistant, and office manager. While all secretaries are covered under the umbrella term “administrative professional,” not all admins hold the title of “secretary.” The name change to Administrative Professionals Week and Administrative Professionals Day expands the event to include other administrative job titles that also richly deserve recognition. In its association bylaws, IAAP defines administrative professionals as “individuals who are responsible for administrative tasks and coordination of information in support of an office-related environment and who are dedicated to furthering their personal and professional growth in their chosen profession.” Employers may use the above definition as a
guide.


Currently PAFSA holds three events a year:

1. Secretaries Daylunch which takes place annually on the first Wednesday of September.The glamorous lunch is at a deluxe venue and guests are treated to a gourmet menu, entertainment and lucky draws. Guests also get to meet the current year's Finalists for the PA of the Year Award and are the first to know who the year's titlebearer will be.
The 2014 lunch takes place on Wednesday 3 September at the Emperor's Palace.

2.The Annual PA Summit takes place in Gauteng in the month of September.
The 2014 Summit takes place on Wednesday 3 September at the Emperor's Palace.

3.The Annual PA of the Year Award which also takes place in Gauteng in the month of September -
The 2014 Award takes place on Wednesday 3 September at the Emperor's Palace.


Booking forms and Programmes 2014 here







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