The Office Excellence Award, presented by the Post-it® Brand, is a quarterly award given to an Administrative Professional who goes above and beyond to keep their office running smoothly, and improve their office environment. Erin Santella is this quarter’s winner. She’s worked in executive assistant roles since the 1990s, and her current position is in sunny Palm Harbor, Florida working for The Spice & Tea Exchange®. She has worked there for two and a half years.
Erin is a master organizer. She takes care of her office and her family. She plans company events, keeps supplies stocked, and generally keeps the office afloat and running. Not only that, she’s helped build a culture of inclusion at The Spice & Tea Exchange®. The company’s mission is to bring flavor to the world, so Erin often brings food to help keep the office happy. She even throws a monthly potluck during which coworkers will drop everything to share a meal together. There’s always a theme, too; September’s was “Back to School,” so the dining room was decorated like a classroom.
However, Erin does take a little help with staying on top of her life. Her computer monitor is bordered by Post-it® Notes. Whether it’s a reminder for an appointment or just to clock out each day, Erin says she needs to get it in writing. “Sending an email doesn’t work, I have to write it down,” she said.
Part of her job is helping The Spice & Tea Exchange® franchisees complete their contracts. That may sound rather simple, but it’s not. The contracts are a dense 60 pages long, with plenty of signature lines, spots to initial and boxes to check. So to demystify all that paperwork, Erin turns to Post-it® Flags so she can mark up documents and make them simpler for the new franchisees.
Erin stays organized to keep on top of her work, and that frees her up to go above and beyond in many aspects of her life. She cares deeply for the people in her life, and she extends that kindness elsewhere. Erin engages in much community, fundraising and philanthropic work, her personal passion that she’s since brought to her office. She keeps the giving constant, inspiring her coworkers to follow her example of volunteerism.
She’s extremely passionate about the things she loves. When we asked Erin about her kids, she asked, “How much time do you have?” We asked what her favorite part of work was, and she didn’t miss a beat before saying her coworkers. And when we asked what her favorite food was she told us all about her feelings for bacon. “The smell of bacon is like the smell of chocolate chip cookies, you can’t tear yourself away from it.” It’s this passionate energy in all aspects of her life that won her this quarter’s Office Excellence Award.
Erin Santella is an executive assistant at The Spice & Tea Exchange® in Palm Harbor, Florida. She grew up in Pennsylvania, but has since moved south where she lives with her husband and two children.