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    Final reflections from Jane Parry

    As my retirement date of 30 April rapidly approaches, I have been looking back over my nearly 15 years at PM+M, more than 8 of which were spent as managing partner.

    My overall feeling is one of pride at how the firm has changed and grown over that time and satisfaction that I have achieved what I wanted to achieve and am leaving the firm in safe hands, with a bright future ahead of it.

    PM+M is a strong, independent firm with over 100 years of history and hopefully many more to come.  Leading the firm on part of that journey has been a privilege.  As partners, we are custodians of the firm.  We lead it for a while, hopefully make it better and stronger and then we step away and let the next generation do their bit.

    I think the acid test for success in business, and indeed for life in general, is whether you leave it a better place than you found it.  Whether you made a positive difference.  I think I have done that.

    In terms of numbers, the firm has more than tripled in size since I joined as tax partner in October 2009, both in terms of turnover and number of people.  But its about far more than just the numbers.

    Leading the firm for more than 8 years has been exhilarating, but not without its challenges.  I vividly remember driving home the first day we locked down in March 2020, with the weight of 150 people’s livelihoods on my shoulders, wondering what on earth was going to happen.  But by the time I got home, I’d processed that and moved on to what we should be doing to safeguard the firm and look after our people and clients.  And that’s what we did.

    We’ve had so many great people joining the firm and building their careers with us over the years, including several generations of apprentices.  It’s been amazing to see those bright young people growing and blossoming with us.  Some will become the future leadership of the firm.  Others will head off into the world with our blessing to build their careers in different ways, hopefully remaining ambassadors for PM+M.

    I am so proud of the incredible culture we have built and the key part I have played in shaping and nurturing it.  Being genuinely true to your values, treating people well and ensuring you consistently do the right thing might cost a little in the short term, but it really does help you build a world class, high performing business to be proud of.

    I have learnt a lot over the years, sometimes the hard way!  Key things I would pass on to others are:

    • Be kind to yourself – we strive for perfection in all areas of our lives but that’s just not realistic 100% of the time – understand when you really need to be perfect and when you can cut yourself a bit of slack.
    • Trust your instincts – they are almost certainly right.
    • Be kind to others – respect should always be earned, never expected because of your status or title. You can learn a lot about people from how they treat people subordinate to them.
    • Life is largely what you choose to make it and a lot of it is down to attitude, as well as hard work and commitment.
    • Find your own style and be true to it, be authentic.
    • Never lose your curiosity – be interested.
    • Life is a journey – there is always more to learn or things that can be improved. At PM+M we have a vision to be the best North West firm of finance professionals.  I was instrumental in creating that vision and I love it because it’s always a journey, not a destination.

    Over the last few months, I have been stepping further back and watching others step forward and start to take the firm forward.  It’s a strange feeling to do that and it’s really hard at first.  Part of me is sad that I won’t be here doing that too, but then I remind myself that I’ve done my bit and it’s someone else’s turn.

    I’ve always been driven, but I don’t feel that I have anything left to prove in my career.  I’ve had an amazing time at the firm, created a bright financial future for myself and am leaving a strong and vibrant firm for others to take forward.  Now it’s time to start the next chapter of my life and see where life takes me.  I can’t wait to see what that will bring!

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