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17 January 2019


It is fascinating to see what difference a decade makes. It is not surprising then, that the #10yearchallenge (where users post two photos of themselves 10 years apart) is currently trending on both social and traditional media.

Ten years ago I was a new mum, navigating my way through the minefield that is parenting. A decade later, the joys and challenges of parenthood are still very much part of my life but much has changed, too. For starters, the workplace is almost unrecognisable. It is now a place (sometimes virtual) where flexible working is commonplace, and parental rights have been extended to fathers, same-sex partners and adopters. More women are rising through the ranks and the world of work has opened up to atypical workers and those who had previously struggled to balance work with life. What will the next decade bring if the pace of technological progress continues at this rate? Will PAs become virtual and conversations digital?

I for one hope not. Every day I witness the unique value that people add in their dealings with colleagues and clients, be it office banter, supporting a team member going through personal difficulties, or trying to make a client’s day better. Don’t get me wrong, I love progress and change, and the huge benefits and efficiencies that technology can bring, I just want to keep real people in the mix.

Mel Arnold is a Senior Legal PA in the employment team.


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