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'Secretary' makes a job-title comeback in US

05 april 2012, 17:53
Photo courtesy of thebostonbazaar.wordpress.com
Photo courtesy of thebostonbazaar.wordpress.com
The cult TV series "Mad Men" could be driving a renewed willingness among career administrative staff to call themselves secretaries, AFP reports citing a professional association.

The International Association of Administration Professionals (IAAP) said it detected a two-fold increase in the use of "secretary" as a job title in a biennial survey in which 3,300 of its members took part.

"This shift marks a reversal of popularity for a job title that has been in decline for at least 20 years," said the IAAP in a statement from its headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri.

"It's unclear why there are more secretaries, though it may be due to a 'Mad Men Effect,'" it said, speculating that the weekly AMC drama program "may stoke nostalgia for the classic image of the American corporate secretary."

While the survey found "executive assistant" and "administrative assistant" to be most common job titles, "administrative secretary" made the top three for the first time in several years, the association said.

"In fact, the number of admins with 'secretary' in their titles nearly doubled in two years, going from eight percent to nearly 15 percent," it said.

Set in a New York advertising agency in the 1960s, "Mad Men" returned to US television screens last month for its fifth season, with its principal character, divorcee Don Draper, married to his much younger secretary.

The IAAP, with more than 22,000 members worldwide, is a non-profit organization that trains and certifies administrative staff. Prior to 1998 it was called the National Secretaries Association.

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