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Lottie Sharland20 Jun 2019
  • Private PA
  • Advice
  • Insight

How To Become A Private PA

At Anderson Hoare, our Private PA matching service specialises in intuitively matching exacting individuals with their perfect private assistant. Having been based in Chelsea for over 25 years we have a unique understanding of the kind of people that require private personal assistants and how the needs and lifestyles of the mega-rich operate. Our intricate knowledge of the PA sector means our private service has been finely tuned and comes with a wealth of knowledge and a career’s worth of experience from all our consultants as well as our company’s founder, Diana Anderson.

We often get asked how to transition from a Corporate PA or EA role to a Private PA role. The first thing to note is that both jobs have lots of the same skills, so if you’re an experienced Corporate EA switching to a Private PA role is well within your remit! Being a PA is all about being super organised, combined with an ability to think on your feet and prioritise tasks while being flexible, trustworthy and at all times having the upmost respect for your principal’s privacy. There are differences between being a corporate and private PA though, and when applying for a new job in the private sector experience is key. If you’re looking to make the switch here are 5 tips from our consultants to help ensure your application is as successful as possible:


Start with your CV. If you currently work in office support, it’s likely that you’ll help your principal with their private life to some degree. Maybe you book their private travel or speak to their children’s nanny to arrange logistics? Anything that affects your principal’s private life demonstrates your Private PA experience. Make this clear and obvious on your CV, try separating out your responsibilities in your current role into business and personal to communicate that you have experience of both sectors.


If you don’t have any experience at all, talk to us! We’ll take into consideration your long-term career goals and help you find a hybrid private/corporate role before transitioning into a purely private one. Contact us here and one of our consultants will give you a ring back to arrange getting you in for an interview.


Network. The PA community is extremely collaborative, there are countless networking events, forums and online community groups, including our own confidential PA community on LinkedIn, AH Insider, where you’ll find recommendations, jobs and advice. Use these groups to ask questions and find networking events where you can meet and talk to other PAs. Someone might know of a Private PA job opening or be able to put you in touch with people that will help your job search or be able to offer advice.


Tech. When you’re working for an individual you probably won’t have the support of an office manager or IT department. This will all come down to you and being tech savvy or having any advanced computer skills will make you stand out from the crowd. You might be interested to read our blog on the best apps for admins. Tech tools can save you time and make your life so much easier and they're always an attractive skill on a CV.


Discretion and confidentiality are key in any private PA role. You’ll potentially be working with ultra-high net worth individuals on extremely private matters and they need to be able to trust you completely, knowing that anything they tell you, or ask you to do, won’t be shared. Once you gain their trust that’s when your role can really grow and expand. Make sure to show an example of your trustworthy and responsible nature in your interview and/or on your CV, stating examples of how you’ve proven yourself in the past and been trusted with confidential tasks and information.

Remember – we’re always here to help! If you want any advice on becoming a Private PA you can ask our PA community in our confidential LinkedIn group, AH Insider, or get in touch with one of our consultants who will be more than happy to chat. If you’d like to view our lives roles head to our Private PA homepage for more info!