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Correspondent&#39s week

My week starts on Monday not only with a new job as a director but also setting up new offices for Hornbuckle Mitchell in London.

We have taken serviced offices in Holborn. I turn up and they manage to provide me with my key but no one is available to show me up and explain where things are so this is a good start.

Once inside, I switch on the computer and nothing happens. Do I phone our IT guy in Leicester? Decide to see if I can work out what is wrong.

Even though I told our IT guy that I am a Luddite when it comes to computers, I feel I should not call him, having been in the office for only 10 minutes. Eventually I notice there is no power as the switch at the wall is off. Computer now working – my achievement for the day.

Spend the day calling people who had asked me to get in touch and give them my phone number and email address so I am now up and running.

Although I had thought to order supplies of paper, compliment slips and envelopes, which have arrived, I now realise that I need pens, pencils and a stapler, so spend time looking in the stationery catalogue.

Before I know where I am, it is 5.30pm and my first day has just flown by.

Tuesday is a day of phone calls and sending out small self-administered scheme and self-invested personal pension packs to people who want to see what Hornbuckle Mitchell has to offer.

Manage to find out how to forward calls from my office phone to my mobile as I am spending Wednesday and Thursday in Leicester meeting people and being shown how the admin systems work for SSASs, Sipps and funded unapproved retirement benefit schemes so I have some idea what I am doing when it comes to computer systems (although most of this will be down to my assistant Annette).

Train arrives late in Leicester. Typical. I think I am jinxed on trains. Neil, one of our directors, is there to meet me. Arrive at the office and start the rounds of meeting everyone and trying to remember names and where they all sit and how you get from one floor to the other in the labyrinth that our Leicester building is.

Have some meetings with the admin managers to get my head round what might be different from my last place and I am pleased to realise that it is mostly very similar so I do not have to remember too much new stuff.

That evening I go out with most of the other directors from the company who I have not met before so I try to be on my best behaviour. One director tells me that he thought I would look older, have an actuarial look about me and be quite scary. He is pleased to see I am not any of these.

But Neil informs him that I am just being polite and am scary really.

Dinner goes well. Up and out the next morning for another session in the office learning the systems.

Back in the new London office on Friday. A client comes in to drop off his SSAS application form and I have a meeting in the City with an IFA which goes well. When I get back, my first Sipp application form has arrived in the afternoon post so off to a good start.

Get an email from Annette, who is on holiday in Barbados, to ask how is it all going and to inform me that her flights have been changed and she will not be here until Tuesday instead of Monday so I will have a further day on my own.

Have survived my first week as a director and have managed to get two clients. Let us hope the next year goes just as well.

Elaine Bancroft is a director at Hornbuckle Mitchell

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