This Secretary's Day ask your Boss to give you a gift that benefits you both! A gift that will last a lifetime!

We invite you to join us at the world's leading conference for Assistants and learn, network & thrive in your Administrative Career!

In Association with the Discovery PA Centre of Excellence

Discovery PA Centre of Excellence

The world's leading international event for senior and aspiring Administrative Professionals and Executive Assistants returns to Johannesburg for the third time in September 2018.

Our other global conferences are taking place in:

Sydney 13 & 14 July 2018 event details click here
Silicon Valley 16 & 17 November 2018 event details click here


Maslow Hotel

7 & 8 September


10 World Class Speakers

Limited Tickets Available


Featuring TEN of the most inspiring and internationally renowned trainers for the Administrative Profession.

Speaker 1

Zelda La Grange

Nelson Mandela’s secretary, gatekeeper and constant companion for the best part of 20 years

Read Zelda's Biog
Speaker 2

Vickie Sokol Evans

Microsoft Certified Trainer to Bill Gates’ Assistants

Read Vickie's Biog
Speaker 3

Rosemarie Terenzio

Public relations and strategic communications expert & John F. Kennedy, Jr.’s Chief of Staff from 1994 until his death in 1999

Read Rosemarie's Biog
Speaker 4

John Shaw

Senior Executive Assistant to the CEO Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Read John's Biog
Speaker 5

Veronica Cochran

Leadership Development Specialist & CEO, IAAP

Read Veronica's Biog
Speaker 6

Kemetia Foley

Admin Renegade

Read Kemetia's Biog
Speaker 7

Anel Martin

Multi-Award Winning Assistant & Former Head of the Academy of Excellence

Read Anel's Biog
Speaker 8

Richard Arnott

Director of BMTG

Read Richard's Biog
Speaker 9

Corrine Hoisington

Microsoft Most Valuable Professional in Computer Tech

Read Corrine's Biog
Speaker 10

Lucy Brazier

Your host, CEO & Publisher of Global Training Resource, Executive Secretary Magazine

Read Lucy's Biog


  • The Social Media Masterclass - Lucy Brazier & Kemetia Foley

    Social Media has changed the way we do business, especially as an Assistant. It gives you immediate access to the expertise of other administrative professionals from all over the world as well as a new and more efficient way to get the information you need, when you need it. It has also changed the way we connect and interact with our customers. If executed correctly social media can be a highly effective way of establishing a strong, personal connection with your customers. Research shows that if implemented properly, it can be one of the most effective customer service tools that there is. That’s why we want to help you create a successful strategy with our half day masterclass.

    You will discover how you can turn your fans into customers, how to use social media most effectively as an Assistant, as well as how to grow your presence online, the right way.

    With over 1 billion users on Facebook and 645 million on Twitter, isn’t it time you learned how to use social media properly?

    This half day session has been specially developed for Executive Secretary LIVE.

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • The Project Management Masterclass - Richard Arnott - Lead author and main presenter of ACEA with 25 years global project management experience

    The role of the Executive PA, Executive Assistant or Office Manager has changed significantly over the past few years with an increasing demand on skills not previously expected of the role.

    Many Executive PAs now find themselves more and more closely involved in project management either running small to medium sized projects themselves (eg. corporate events) or working more closely with the other project managers across their organisation.

    Executive PAs are also becoming the eyes and ears of their boss in regard to how various projects are performing across their organisations and there is a growing need to understand the basic principles of project management.

    This half day workshop focuses on the principles of project governance that can be applied to ensure that projects are being run smartly and efficiently as well as identifying areas of potential weakness that could threaten project success. The workshop also discusses the best methods of ensuring effective project reporting to ensure that project issues are properly flagged and acted upon.

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • The Modern PAs Survival Guide: dealing with the challenges of the contemporary working world – Anel Martin - Multi-Award Winning Assistant & Rock Star International Trainer

    The modern assistant faces many new challenges in the working world today:
    • Quantum technological advancement
    • Working for multiple bosses
    • Working with remote teams
    • Information overload and tech stress
    • Stress in the workplace
    • More diverse management teams, with different working/management and communication styles

    Anel’s fast-paced and lively session will equip you with the practical tips and techniques that you need to deal with these issues and get the most from your working day.

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • A life less ordinary - John Shaw - Senior Executive Assistant to the CEO Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

    John’s extraordinary story takes us on a journey of self-discovery from an impoverished start to EA to the CEO of one of the greatest foundations in the world. John will explain how seizing pivotal moments can shape our individual careers and life.
    • How to elevate your position through skills, responsibilities, and networking
    • The importance of strong working relationships with executives
    • Creating and seizing opportunities when presented

    Working in the philanthropic sector has taught John to always ask what if? In this powerful session, John will encourage participants to think about not only how their work impacts the world but also about what personally fulfills them.

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • Morning Networking Break

  • Customer Service and the role of the Assistant – Kemetia Foley

    What does customer service have to do with being an Assistant?

    • The vital role of first impression makers
    • The impact of organisational culture
    • Empathy vs. Sympathy
    • Internal vs. External customers
    • The impact of customer service on your organisation, and your career
    • Mapping the approach to customer service

    Attendees will leave this session with a bright new perspective on what it means to provide superb customer service as an Assistant.

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • Building Your Unique Leadership Capability - Veronica Cochran

    Leadership was once thought to be the exception to the rule and now it is the rule without exception! This critical skill set is now required at every organizational level. Developing your unique leadership capability is the one thing you can do to fast track your career satisfaction and success. It is the key to operating with greater confidence, meeting or exceeding expectations and gaining the recognition you desire.
    • Understand how personal beliefs surrounding leadership impact your role, relationships and performance results
    • Identify strategies to increase your organizational value
    • Understand the importance of developing your unique leadership capability
  • Networking Lunch

  • The Future of Technology for Admins - Virtual Reality in Business - Corrine Hoisington

    Virtual reality is about to become every professional admin’s reality. Companies are using VR free apps and devices for marketing product lines, for adding more productivity to your day, and for pushing technology to excite their customers. Virtual reality, which can be referred to as immersive multimedia or computer-simulated reality, replicates an environment that simulates a physical presence in places in the real world or an imagined world, allowing the user to interact in that world.

    Virtual realities artificially create sensory experiences, which can include sight, touch, hearing, and smell. Be in the “know” for exciting new technologies that are changing the workplace. This workshop is only for those who can handle extreme excitement!

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • Crisis Management – RoseMarie Terenzio - Public relations and strategic communications expert & John F. Kennedy, Jr.’s chief of staff from 1994 until his death in 1999.

    Assistants are often on the front line when their Principal or business are embroiled in a crisis. In this session, one of the world’s top Crisis Management experts will give critical advice and strategic insight on crisis management for businesses and individuals. RoseMarie will give a behind-the- scenes look at some of the most high-profile crisis cases in the US as well as talking about her time with JFK Jr and how you manage the brand of a living legend, both before and after their death. From political scandals to sexual abuse and harassment, this intense, media-driven session will give you the fundamental tools to manage and execute a successful crisis response campaign. CEOs, communications executives, start-ups and brand managers will all benefit from this exciting session.

    Click here to BOOK NOW
  • Afternoon Networking Break

  • Timesaving (and jaw-dropping) digital productivity tips - Part 2 - Vickie Sokol Evans - The world’s top Microsoft Trainer

    Literally making the audiences’ jaws drop, Vickie Sokol Evans, author of the bestselling “100 Tips” series for both PC & Mac, is one of the leading tech trainers in the world right now. Who knew that Microsoft Office could be so fun? She’s witty, sharp, pointed and knows more about how to get the most from Microsoft Office – teaching Assistants tricks to turn what usually takes hours into solutions that takes minutes, by learning how to use the programs to their full potential.

    Vickie is a Microsoft Certified Trainer, specializing in Microsoft, Google and Apple productivity platforms such as Microsoft Office, OneNote, SharePoint, Skype/Lync, Office 365, Google Apps, Gmail, The Cloud, and more!

    Vickie has taught at every LIVE event and is our most requested return speaker, with 98% of our audiences wanting her back.

    Vickie travels the globe as a sought-after international speaker delivering live Jerry Maguire-inspired keynote presentations to major brands including Microsoft, Starbucks, MasterCard, The New York Times, eBay, American Airlines, The Gates Foundation, and most notably, Bill Gates’ Admin Team. Vickie helps businesses to save time and deliver better results faster – showcasing an immediate ROI after each session.

    Click here and BOOK NOW TO SEE Vickie Sokol Evans at Executive Secretary LIVE

  • KEYNOTE: Good Morning Mr Mandela – Zelda la Grange - Nelson Mandela’s secretary, gatekeeper and constant companion for the best part of 20 years

    Zelda la Grange grew up in South Africa as a white Afrikaner who supported the rules of segregation. Yet just a few years after the end of Apartheid she would become a most trusted assistant to Nelson Mandela, growing to respect and cherish the man she had been taught was the enemy. Zelda la Grange will tell the story of how she had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. It is the incredible journey of redemption: an awkward, terrified young typist in her twenties later chosen to become one of the President’s most loyal and devoted servants, spending most of her adult working life travelling with, supporting and caring for the man she would come to call “Khulu”, or “grandfather”.

    Zelda la Grange was born in 1970 and brought up in apartheid South Africa. She began working as a secretary for the government in 1992, in the Department of State Expenditure. In 1993 she moved to the Human Resources division and in 1994 she joined the office of the first democratically elected President of South Africa as a senior ministerial typist. She was promoted to one of President Mandela’s three private secretaries in 1997 and in 1999 Nelson Mandela requested her to remain in his services beyond retirement.

    In 2002 she left government and became a full time employee of the Nelson Mandela Foundation. She served Nelson Mandela in different capacities over nineteen years, ranging from typist, assistant private secretary, private secretary, manager of his office his spokesperson and aide-de- camp. She was serving as his personal assistant when he passed on in December 2013. Zelda will speak for 35 minutes after which there will be an opportunity for delegates to ask her questions.

    Click here to BOOK NOW

    We understand your role:

  • We know your role is to make the person you look after as effective as they can possibly be.
  • We know your workload is huge and you want to know how to be more efficient and productive.
  • We know that since the recession, you have taken on many of the middle management tasks but have never had training in how to do them properly.
  • We know that you are in a unique position in your company as the "go to" person who solves all problems.
  • We know that you are becoming more of a "strategic business partner" than the stereotypical Assistant and that your businesses need you to increase your business knowledge.

  • That is why we have put this unique programme together for you. No other programme combines real business solutions that you will take back to the office and implement immediately to improve your systems and productivity, the best tips & tricks that you will ever receive on how to use Microsoft Office products most effectively and a huge dose of inspiration that will reconnect you with your role and what can be achieved for you and your business as a world class Assistant.

FAQ & Benefits of Attending

If you only attend one event this year, then this is the event you should attend.

Ten world-class speakers are flying in not just to motivate and inspire you, but to provide essential training that will boost your knowledge, skills and productivity.

Included with your ticket are two days of:
• Intensive, practical workshops
• Best practice skills & advice from trainers who support world leaders
• Leadership & development training
• Opportunities to build your network with business contacts and top-suppliers
• Training acknowledged by a certificate upon completion

Delegates will leave the event with a plethora of practical tips, as well as immediately actionable ideas to increase productivity and impress. But above all, we want to inspire you to go back to your businesses and use what you have learned to add new dimensions to your role. CLICK HERE to Book Now.

  • Request PDF Brochure

    Just email and we will send a PDF brochure that you can put in front of your Executive or HR department to help make the case for you, and your fellow Assistants to attend.

    Please note that if you buy three tickets, you get the fourth for free.

    We also offer special group rates for more than 12 Assistants. For more details please email
  • What will I learn?

    Executive Secretary LIVE will give you a unique opportunity to learn from the best. You will discover proven timesaving techniques that will free up your time to make you more productive. You will implement effective strategies to align your role and the business’s needs in ways that will reduce costs and improve performance.

    The content of this event directly supports making smarter use of your resources (people, process & technology) to deliver higher quality service. It is extremely good value for the level of intensive education.

    Practical presentations that will highlight best practice, current research findings and advanced approaches from the world’s top industry experts and thought leaders for Administrative Professionals.

    Discover the latest products, meet new suppliers and encounter some great services in the exhibition area - including the bookstore and book signing sessions with the authors who are presenting.

    You will receive a Delegate Pack to take away, packed with workbooks, presentations and useful information to support the topics covered over the two days, which can be brought back to the office and shared with your peers. 98% of last year’s attendees in London said the delegate pack was exceptional or excellent.
  • Travel

    Please note that for those that want to take part, and spend quality time in Johannesburg, we will organise tours and networking events from Wednesday evening, so you may want to take that into account when booking flights.

    Travel is self-arranged, but as we bring business partners on board, we will keep you updated of travel information where possible.

  • Accommodation

    We have agreed a special rate for delegates wishing to stay at the Maslow Hotel, Sandton.

    To book your accommodation at our preferential rate please phone the hotel directly, and quote the reference "ExecSec-18".

  • Refreshments & Excursions

    Included in your ticket are refreshments, lunch and the Gala Dinner reception on Saturday night. Tours and excursions, along with the Networking Informal Dinner are chargeable.

    Please refer to the networking section for a breakdown of additional excursions or email Marion Lowrence for more information:


Get connected and join an elite network of senior Assistants from all over the globe.

The audience that attends this event is unique. They are truly international and are some of the most senior Assistants in the world.

At last year's Johannesburg event, as well as delegates from all over South Africa we had delegates from Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Italy, New Zealand, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, Zambia & Zimbabwe.

A full list of networking events will be made available soon.

Please note that we organise tours on Wednesday and Thursday as well as an informal dinner on Friday night and our Gala Dinner on Saturday night so if you want to part of any of this, you might want to organise your travel arrangements accordingly.


City Tours & Networking


City Tours & Networking


Drinks reception & Informal networking dinner


Gala Dinner


Networking Brunch

More detailed information will be announced shortly.


Hotel Infomation

Executive Secretary LIVE Johannesburg 2018 will be held in the state of the art auditorium at the new Discovery Health Headquarters in Sandton; the largest single commercial office development in Africa, and also one of the most innovative.

Our hotel of choice for delegates is the Maslow hotel. This is where the speakers will stay and would be our suggestion if you want to make the most of the networking available.

Transportation will be arranged between the Maslow hotel and the Discovery Offices.

The Maslow is the ultimate business hotel situated in the heart of Sandton's commercial district. Sandton is home to all the top investment banks, financial institutions, as well as the Gautrain station and the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. The perfect place to go to escape the hustle of the office, the Maslow is a haven with its beautiful gardens, idyllic water features, crisp blue pool and tranquil terraces.

The Maslow offers the best corporate services and business facilities to ensure that you’ll never miss your office while you’re away from it. One of the biggest drawcards is our free and unlimited WiFi connectivity that is available throughout the hotel.

The following hotels are also recommended:
  • Radisson Blue Gautrain Hotel (right near Gautrain which also comes straight from the airport to Sandton)
  • Michael Angelo Towers (Mandela Square / Sandton City)
  • The Capital Empire (across the road from Discovery on Rivonia Road)
  • Signature Lux Hotel (near Mandela Square)
  • Garden Court Sandton City (Walk through Mandela Square and Sandton City to Discovery about a 10 minute walk)
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  • ACEA

    The groundbreaking, globally recognised, certified training programme for the modern day EA. This intensive & interactive programme will give you the business acumen needed to support an Executive at the highest level. Share experiences, learn and network with your international peers in London, Zurich, Manchester and more locations all over the world this year (also available in-house). Request the brochure, business case template and full details today.

    E-MAIL: or VISIT:
  • ES Training

    Whether you are looking to attend a course, trying to find a trainer to come and run a programme in-house or you need a speaker/speakers for an event, we know and can recommend the best trainers & speakers for Assistants on the circuit. We have personally seen all the trainers that we recommend live, so you can rest assured that we can match you and your requirements with the speaker that suits you best.

    E-MAIL: or VISIT:
  • IAAP

    IAAP is a not-for-profit professional association and exists to provide education, certification, and leadership development to administrative professionals. Our purpose is to enhance the value that office and administrative professionals bring to the table and advocate for the profession as it evolves to encompass the role of not just business partners but also leaders.
  • IMA

    We are a global and high quality network of management support professionals. Two of our main aims are the personal and professional development of our members and the continued evolution of the management support profession.

    Our Association has been founded in 1974 as European Association for Professional Secretaries (EAPS) by Sonia Vanular. In 1999 the members decided to rename the Association to European Management Assistants (EUMA) and in 2016 to change to IMA - International Management Assistants, considering the huge changes of our profession and the business world and to get prepared for the future.

    Our Association distinguishes itself from others with its international dimension. Our members have access to a professional network which encompasses a vast range of business cultures, languages and lifestyles, but also provides a place where everyone is on common ground in a safe and proactive environment. We are currently represented in more than 25 countries.

    Our Association is a self-development organization with no political aims and no trade-union activities.

    English is the official language of our Association.

    Our Vision and Mission Statement
    Be the leading international network of management support professionals
    • by providing high quality development training
    • by promoting knowledge sharing
    • by encouraging interaction among the members
    • by monitoring the development of our profession
    • by speaking up for the profession
  • Isipho

    Isipho Admin Bursary is a registered NPC 2015/438143/08 registered officially in South Africa on the 08/12/2015. We are not government funded but are supported by administrative professionals and training companies from around the world financially. We are a team who are committed to leaving a legacy!

    Our bursary is now in year two and we have already made an impact. Our goals is to change lives one at a time. We want to create spectacular careers by not only funding education for deserving bursary students but to support them with mentoring, coaching and on the job training experiences.

    We already have some amazing companies who will be hosting our students for work experience weeks and we will be preparing our students for working life by assisting with CV's, interviewing skills and introducing them to networks and people they would not normally have access to.

    This project is not just about the money, it is transferring real world skills and guiding our students into the world of work!
  • Travo

    TRAVO is a free trip planning tool designed specifically for administrative professionals. Our tool saves you time, money, and your sanity! Traveler profiles put you in the driver's seat and save preferences, loyalty points, and payment information for instant trip creation. Exclusive corporate rates provide discounts of up to 30% off publicly available rates. Communication tools remove the need for inefficient email chains. Best of all, TRAVO is completely free! For more information and priority access to this revolutionary tool visit

Interested in becoming a partner? Contact Matthew Want for more information.


Here are just a few comments from previous events:

  • "Having attended last year's Conference, I knew this year's would be wonderful - and it was. I was expecting the best - and it delivered."

  • "I have never felt more motivated about my role. I am now proud to be an EA and will give the best I can to do an amazing job."

  • "What can I say? Top speakers, top organization, top team :-)"

  • "Absolutely the best value for money PA event there is."

  • "I gained more confidence, I learned so many things, I met so many great people that I'm now coaching my peers!"

  • "After attending Executive Secretary LIVE, I can say that I've been OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE and I LIKE IT SOOOO MUCH!!!"

  • "It is one of the more expensive conferences when you consider travel & accommodation over and above the cost of the conference. However, that being said, if my company didn't fund future years I would certainly endeavor to pay for it myself as I think this conference is a must attend event in terms of what delegates get out of it."

  • "I was promised awesome and it was awesome."

  • "I got home full of energy and motivation meeting not only high-class speakers but also many inspiring ladies within my profession."

Executive Secretary in the Press

We’ve picked up media interest from our campaigns to bring the role of the Assistant to the forefront of businesses across the globe. Here is a selection of some of our global media coverage which is actively assisting in shattering the stereotypes that surround the role.


Only 100 tickets available

or for any further information or assistance please contact us
Email or Phone +44 (0)1932 560974


Email or Phone +44 (0)1932 560974

Contact us for help in obtaining authorisation to attend Executive Secretary LIVE, including:
The ‘Business Case to Attend’ template
The benefits of attending as a group and bringing your team
Articles on how to encourage your company to pay for training
Learning objectives template