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Productivity Blog

Time Management Tips

Time Management Tips

Why do some people seem to get so much more done with their time than others? What is the secret to managing your time effectively? There are many answers that are unique to everyone on this topic, but we did find a handy guide about this all-important productivity...

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The Art of Productivity

The Art of Productivity

Being productive takes planning, and energy. We have all put off those things that we really wanted or needed to do! We recently read a fantastic blog post about how time, energy and attention are all at the core of being more productive, and the importance of daily...

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Give Your Brain A Break

Give Your Brain A Break

Virtual meeting fatigue is very real. Have you experienced it? Working from home has a ton of perks, but just because you can sit in front of your laptop all day and attend back-to-back meetings...doesn't mean you should. Your brain needs a break! Doing something as...

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Don’t Wait To Want To

Don’t Wait To Want To

Don’t wait to want to exercise. Don’t wait to want to make that phone call. Ever notice how happy or relieved you are AFTER you exercise? AFTER you make that call? AFTER you get that issue resolved? The inspiration and satisfaction is coming. It will come AFTER you do...

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Thriving During a Crisis

Thriving During a Crisis

"On the best of days, many CEOs would be lost without their EAs. In the chaos of the pandemic, exemplary assistance is not a luxury, but a requirement." Of course... we couldn't agree more! A good Executive Assistant is much more than a task-doer. A great Executive...

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Delegating the “Heavy Lifting”

Delegating the “Heavy Lifting”

The art of delegating can be tricky, but worth it!  How do you develop the people around you to really rise up and take on more of the 'heavy lifting' of your company? Giving things 'away' can seem daunting but once you do the real work of learning how to effectively...

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Cut Through the Boredom!

Cut Through the Boredom!

Asian Efficiency is a blog we consistently return to. This recent post about tackling so-called 'boring' tasks has some useful tips on learning to form productive habits, as well as long- and short-term solutions to overcoming lethargy. Of course, one solution is...

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Urgency wrecks productivity!

Urgency wrecks productivity!

Enjoy this article which we agree with so very much. "Your ability to distinguish urgent and important tasks has a lot to do with your success.” Dwight D. Eisenhower once said, “What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.”...

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Working Virtually Isn’t Going Anywhere

Working Virtually Isn’t Going Anywhere

Like the author of this article, our team has been working remotely since the start of our company, almost five years ago. Working from home is a benefit and advantage for our contractors. Our team of virtual Executive Assistants stay connected via bi-weekly strategy...

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The Accountable Leader

The Accountable Leader

Our CEO Gina Cotner frequently speaks to other Admin and Executive organizations on successfully managing expectations what accountability really looks like. Our own team of high-performing Executive Assistants are continuously trained and mentored on setting and...

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Failure isn’t the opposite of success

Failure isn’t the opposite of success

Yes, Bill Gates, I agree. "Success isn't binary.”  Is the opposite of Success, Failure? No. Success is incremental. Are you learning lessons along the way? This is key. And this has been the key for our company. Certain clauses in our Master Service Agreement are...

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Taking time off during the pandemic? But how?

Taking time off during the pandemic? But how?

“But business is slow. I’m not as busy as I once was. How can I justify Time Off?” Time Off is for your overall wellness. And you have been taxed during the pandemic.  You have been taxed mentally, emotionally and perhaps financially and physically. It has been a...

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Who Moved My Cheese? Who Moved My Life!?

Who Moved My Cheese? Who Moved My Life!?

This 22-year-old book is still so relevant! On the back cover, you’ll see the names of companies that reveal its age and era. This book is about the different ways we respond to life’s changes. Here in 2020 we might call a new edition of this book “Who Moved My...

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Tips for Effective Delegation

Tips for Effective Delegation

Coaching our clients and Executive Assistants on effective delegation is one of the most important things we continue to do. Delegating with intention keeps a partnership strong and productive. We like this article that outlines 7 tips the author finds effective....

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Would I have done anything differently?

Would I have done anything differently?

Recently I was interviewed by a couple of students from the Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Washington. One of our current clients asked me if I would be willing to speak with them. When she introduced me via email, she said, “I believe that the training...

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The Leader Assistant

The Leader Assistant

We've been looking forward to the launch of this book! Our CEO, Gina Cotner, had the honor of writing a recommendation for The Leader Assistant, that is included on the inside pages. She was also interviewed by author Jeremy Burrows on his podcast last year, The...

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Happy 4th Birthday Athena!

Happy 4th Birthday Athena!

It’s Athena’s 4th birthday this week! Four years ago, we incorporated. And how are we faring? All in all, well. We are grateful. This business has always “worked from home”, whether it’s me the CEO in a two-bedroom condo near Alki Beach in Seattle, WA (oh yes, our...

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Managing people remotely

Managing people remotely

Athena has always been a work-from-home company. 100% virtual, from Day 1.     But what does it take to manage your staff from home? There’s a lot that has come out in the last week or two on tips for working from home. But how do you manage your team, while sitting...

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Work From Home Tips

Work From Home Tips

Are you new to telecommuting? Our contractors love the flexibility of working remotely. They also are extremely adept at virtual work and staying on task. With the escalating health crisis in our world today, you may be new to working from home. This article via...

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Delegate Effectively

Delegate Effectively

Enjoy this great podcast about delegating effectively! We love Asian Efficiency and learned a lot from this particular episode. If you don’t have an hour to learn about delegation, check out the podcast cheat sheet and pick a section that sounds good to you! Perhaps...

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The Building Blocks Of Success

The Building Blocks Of Success

Humility, clear communication, and a penchant for learning are all qualities that help define 'success'. The earlier these kind of qualities are learned and implemented, the better! We particularly appreciated this recent article highlighting 13 of the most difficult...

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The Value of Time Ownership

The Value of Time Ownership

Does having every minute of the day scheduled mean you won’t get to have fun? What if allocating all 24 hours in the day, led to less stress? Shawn Blanc shares why he schedules every minute of the day. Our two favorite reasons: 1) Keeps me from dual focus: I know...

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What to Delegate? Stuff I’m great at? Maybe.

What to Delegate? Stuff I’m great at? Maybe.

Thank you Shawn Blanc for once again brining sanity to a fast-paced overwhelming world. We love this blog of his that starts with the actual definition of "Overwhelm”. What are some things that you’re great at and don’t like doing? The Very Definition of...

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Our Vision for Our Clients

Our Vision for Our Clients

In this short video our CEO shares with you our Vision for our Clients. Many organizations have “A Vision” for the company. We do have a vision for our company, but we also have a vision for our staff, and a vision for our clients. All of them remind us of why we’re...

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Releasing Your Grip on Work

Releasing Your Grip on Work

We are delighted to share this short blog by Shawn Blanc that sums up SO MUCH of what we like to shout from the mountain tops! To force himself to do only the things he could do at work, he cut his working hours in half. This forced him to delegate or eliminate...

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Be the solution to the problems you run into

Be the solution to the problems you run into

Hi, I’m Dorian, one of the Executive Assistants here at Athena. People often wonder what all we do and what all that we are capable of. Well in short, the answer is, “A lot!” I thought I’d share with you one of the unique situations I ran into recently in my work with...

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Is it worth it to delegate?

Is it worth it to delegate?

I can do it faster myself. It's going to take me longer to explain what to do, than it will take for me to do it myself! No one will do it like I want it done. No one can do it as well as I do. I tried delegating before. It didn’t go well. Sound familiar? Those...

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If time is money, where is it going?

If time is money, where is it going?

We couldn’t agree more with these 3 key points: 1) The 24/7 hustle mentality is not only broken, but it is dangerous. 2) You do not have to constantly hustle to succeed as an entrepreneur or business owner.  3) Do the work to learn how you actually spend your time and...

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Life Vision

Hi all. Gina Cotner here, the founder and CEO of Athena Executive Services. This week is my birthday week, which is always a time of reflection, gratitude, and appreciation for my life. One way to celebrate is by sending my mom a Birth Day card every year. She really...

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Relieve stress by buying time, not stuff

Relieve stress by buying time, not stuff

This article shares about a study whose findings suggest that spending money to save time may reduce stress about the limited time in the day, thereby improving happiness. It also says that people who spend money to buy themselves time, such as by outsourcing disliked...

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The Executive Assistant – What I Am…

The Executive Assistant – What I Am…

“I’m a neutral, and independent advisor to my Executive, who enables the day-to-day management routines that enhance the effectiveness of my boss, and the organisation as a whole.  I operate as a business manager in my own right – and I am an integral part of the...

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What your Out Of Office Reply says about you

What your Out Of Office Reply says about you

Wouldn’t you love this as your Out Of Office Reply? “I am currently on vacation and not accepting any emails about anything. I’m not planning on reading any old emails when I get back, either, because that feels antithetical to the vacation experience.” Enjoy this...

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What are you doing this weekend?

What are you doing this weekend?

Our prospective clients are usually in pain by the time they come to us, exhibiting a variety of symptoms. For many of us, we don’t go to the doctor until something is really a problem. We try to handle it on our own, or press on and hope the symptoms go...

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Are you sacrificing your health to make money?

Are you sacrificing your health to make money?

“Man surprised me most about humanity. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in...

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Lessons from the Startup Trenches

Lessons from the Startup Trenches

We love all these lessons learned from PitchBook CEO, John Gabbert, but a great Executive Assistant can be a big asset with Lesson #5: "Ideas are easy to come by: Preparation and execution are the hard part". Your EA can be the architect and coordinator of the...

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Athena virtual assistants make it possible for our clients not only to get more done but to be more fulfilled and satisfied with the work that they do themselves. We take off your plate, those items that are not worthy of your time, skill, purpose and prowess.

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