London's Top PA: Liv Hoptroff

Liv Hoptroff is this month's Top PA  & she's worked with some incredible people

1. How did you get your career started as a PA? I used to work closely with Richard Branson on Necker Island organising anything and everything that the family and guests requested. Every day was very different, being on the Island taught me that anything is possible even with tight deadlines. From this it felt like a natural progression to move into becoming a Private PA

2. What was your experience of finding your first PA role? Initially it was tough, I wanted to continue to work for people in the public eye that excite me and that I admire. I was constantly knocked back and many doors were closed but I stayed true to what I believed in and eventually found the role I was looking for.

3. How does it differ from previous jobs? It’s different as in it is 24/7 juggling lifestyles and making sure you don’t miss a beat, previous roles have been equally busy

4. Who has been your most inspirational boss and why? Richard Branson, he’s an amazing family man with good values and treats people with respect and care. He is consistently wanting to learn more and help people from all walks of life. These are all the values I strive to have.

5. Biggest achievement as a PA? Although I haven’t been in the game long, I feel I have built a great network of people and friends around me that can help me every day with the all types of situations, which I have learnt is invaluable.

6. Biggest hurdle you have had to overcome as a PA? I wanted to work for the best and I had never really worked in London before, so I had to pick up the phone 50 times a day and try build myself a profile and build relationships, it took a long time however was worth every minute.

7. Do you feel valued as a PA? Do you think PAs get enough recognition? I do feel valued, I think it is different for everyone, but I am lucky enough to have worked with some great people. I think it’s important to have a good relationship that goes both ways and is more like a collaboration.

8. What advice would you give to candidates finding their first job in a support role in London? First days are always scary but you learn so much every day. Don’t be scared to temp you not only learn new skills, but you also meet new people who might be able to recommend you or help you later on. I think its really important to build a solid network around you.

9. What three attributes do you think make a good PA? Trust, organisation, honesty

10. What makes your day easier and what or who couldn’t you live without? A diary that is strapped to me 24/7!! I couldn’t live without a good cup of tea in the morning to start my day.

11. What are you most proud of? In the space of a year I have built up a community of friends within the same industry and met some incredible people that I have learnt a huge amount from.

12. What advice would you give to a young PA starting their career? Believe in yourself and have confidence. Don’t be scared to go for big roles. Every role is different, it’s not the words on the job spec but relationship with your boss that is important. Get yourself out there, go to event nights and don’t give up. I was knocked down many times but pick yourself up and keep going it will pay off I promise! :)

13. When you’re not being one of London’s top PAs, what do you enjoy doing? Travelling, drinking far too much tea and wine and spending quality time with family and friends.

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