Interview with Natalie Barker

Natalie Barker Godel Technologies

How can the North West PA of the Year Awards enhance your career? Natalie Barker, Office Manager and PA at Godel Technologies, and winner of the Above & Beyond category at the 2017 awards, shares her experience of winning the accolade:




Becoming a PA

“I wanted to be a PA from the outset, but I found it difficult to figure out how I could pursue the career without having any previous experience. I began my career working in a temporary as an Office Courier at 21 and working my way up to a Data Analyst. Although I loved my job, I felt that I needed a career change.”

“I decided to go for it as a PA and since then I haven’t looked back! After signing with an agency, I almost immediately found myself in a PA interview for Godel Technologies with high-level members of the team. I received a phone call that day offering me the job and I’ve now been working as a support professional for almost 18 months.”

The awards process

“Having only worked at Godel for just over 6 months, and being new to the profession, it was a complete shock to hear I’d been nominated for the ‘Above & Beyond’ award by my director Rob.”

“I really enjoyed the awards process, having initially thinking the judging would be nerve-wracking and formal. As the interview questions were sent to me beforehand, I was able to prepare and feel confident that I could really sell myself. The interview environment was really relaxed, more of a conversation than a formal interview, which really helps you to ease into the process.”

The awards evening

“I would say the ceremony was the best night of my life! There were six other talent professionals in my category so I was not expecting to win. I jumped up and my chair went flying, and I proceeded to give the worst speech of my life when I reached the stage! As well as being taken aback, I was extremely humbled that I’d received such recognition from the PA community.”

Since winning the award, my professional profile has skyrocketed and I now have so many professional connections in the industry.

“The night wasn’t just memorable because of my win, but because I met so many industry peers on the night who I now call my friends. It was brilliant to share experiences and pressures of the role with colleagues in the profession and celebrate our hard work and dedication.”

A career-enhancing experience

“It’s overwhelming to get the recognition for my hard work and commitment to the role – it reallt does mean the world.”

“Since winning the award, my professional profile has skyrocketed and I now have so many professional connections in the industry. Many contacts are reaching out to me personally about new opportunities and networking events. There’s a community that I was not even aware of before the PA Awards.”

Advice to applicants

“Relax and don’t be afraid to sell yourself. The thought of describing how good you are or the professional contribution you make is daunting, but treat it like you would a job interview and be yourself! You’re there for a reason and have so much support to guide you through the process.”

 

Do you want to take your career to the next level? Apply or nominate for this year’s awards here.