Meet Irene, our V.V.V.I.P – the PA to our CEO! In her #myENTERTAINERstory, she talks us through the challenges she’s faced working for such a fast-paced company, the must-have skills a PA should possess, and a day-to-day insight into her work week!
We know that you’re critical to the time management, success and wellness of our CEO. How important are you to the day-to-day life of Paul?
Paul has a busy schedule and therefore maintaining his diary is critical. I manage lots of requests for meetings, clients, customer visits and trips overseas to our branch offices. We are expanding quickly and cover 25 cities directly, and therefore Paul spends some time outside of HQ too. I arrange all flights, hotels and itineraries so he can concentrate on the business. He runs his leadership team meetings frequently where I’m also responsible for the agenda, minutes and actions.
What’s your favourite part of your job?
Paul sets high standards for everyone in the team, including me. As a rapidly evolving business, we are all committed to our strategy and purpose. I enjoy working with the teams, meeting people in his team and the dynamic work environment. It is a fun place to work and it really comes from the top.
What do you feel are the key skills needed to do your job?
- Organisation and time management
- Accuracy and attention to detail
- Administrative skills
- Tact and discretion
- Interpersonal and communications skills
What have you learned since joining such a fast-paced company?
On joining as his PA, I had some experience and knew this role would certainly take my career forward. Paul prefers to promote from within the organisation. I had previously worked in retail so understand some parts of the business but knew this would be an exciting and demanding role. I felt a little scared when I started, but with the help of Paul (he’s very supportive!) I’ve learned a lot, especially communicating with different types of people inside and outside the organisation. Through these interactions, I have gained more confidence. I have learned new skills, and having spent over three years alongside him, I guess we are working well as a team.
What does a normal day at work look like?
I’m up by 6:45am, and check my phone for any last-minute email or messages, as I want to make sure there were no surprises overnight! I normally reach the office around 8am, as I like to get some time to myself before Paul arrives so I’m prepared. My diary for day and week ahead is then reviewed, and then I brief Paul on any changes. This sets up the day – and there is always time for a quick chat too!
Over the day, I welcome guests, book meeting rooms, chase teams for meetings, find minutes, previous communications etc. to support the everyday working of a busy office. My style is organised, so I know what is required usually in advance. I check and raise PO’s, compile data and presentations, plan itineraries and flights and manage schedules, especially for a couple months ahead.
I usually catch up with Paul between meetings, schedule tactical meets or calls so he can get things done. At the end of each day we sit and catch up on the day and set out the day ahead. Some schedules need amending, changing or cancelling – we certainly make sure the diary works.
I like to leave on time and try to get a few gym sessions in every week – it keeps me fit and active, and means I can continue take part in company activities like the annual Roy Nasr triathlon and various socials.
Think you have what it takes to join the ENTERTAINER family? Make sure to check out our available roles!