Ann Hodson

I think I was always destined for a career as a personal assistant.

When I took my options at school (way back in 1989), the “art” subject I chose was keyboarding applications and, as one of the top five in my class, I was one of the first to be allowed to use the electronic typewriters (the ones with the little window that printed a line of text that you typed in) and yes, I did learn to type on a manual typewriter! I stayed on at school to do my A Levels but decided it was not for me and left after a few months. I got a job as an office junior at a construction company and went to night school to study typing and shorthand. I loved both and knew this was the career path for me.

After a couple of years I moved into professional services and that is where I have spent most of my career – mainly solicitors, corporate real estate and accountancy firms. I gradually worked my way up from an office junior to secretary and then to senior secretary/PA.

I met my husband in 2003 but I lived in Birmingham and he lived in Lancashire. After months of weekend travels on the M6, we decided to move in together so I moved “up North”. I worked locally as a secretary for a year before I secured a job as Office Manager at JLL in Manchester where I had worked previously in Birmingham.

After the birth of my first son in 2009 I wanted to work closer to home and was lucky to secure a job at a local housing association which included a role in governance looking after the Board. It was whilst I was advertising a PA role for my team that I noticed an offsite PA role advertised at PwC which looked perfect for me as I was then a mum of two children under 8. I previously worked for PwC in Birmingham and only left to move to Lancashire so it felt like it was meant to be. I was lucky to succeed in the interview and I re-joined PwC in 2016.

I have been very fortunate in my career to work at some amazing companies, with some brilliantly talented people and been exposed to a wide variety of opportunities to challenge myself, learn new skills and share my experience and knowledge with others.