The interdependency between boss and PA makes the relationship more sophisticated and demanding than a simple master-and-servant contract. There are ground rules, but each pairing is different. For Carolyn McCall, MD of Guardian Newspapers, and her assistant Beth Glazer, it relies on intuitive mutual understanding. Lord Marshall and his long-serving assistant at BA Anne Hensman set great store by clarity and frankness.
The Egyptian pharaohs had them. Ancient Romans had them. So did the Vatican and European monarchs. Today they stand at the right hand of captains of industry and middle managers alike. In fact, ever since mankind has had a need to juggle diary engagements and send out for coffee, the personal assistant (PA) has been there.