Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
4:00 AM 19th November 2021

10 In 10: Paul Dickson Chief Executive And Managing Partner Of Armstrong Watson

Paul Dickson is the Chief Executive and Managing Partner of Armstrong Watson, a firm of accountants, business strategists and financial advisers based across the north of England and Scotland. It has a network of 17 offices throughout Cumbria, Yorkshire, the North East and Scotland.

Paul Dickson
Paul Dickson
What does a typical working day for you involve?

There isn’t such a thing as a typical working day for me – which is good as I think I would get bored. Leading a top 30 firm of accountants and a successful financial advisory business means that no two days are the same. Don’t get me wrong, I have to get involved in the detail, but moving the business forward to deliver on our strategic plans is what I tend to get to focus on and doing so is great fun.

What makes your company special?

Our Quest – to help our clients achieve prosperity, a secure future and peace of mind. Everything we do as a business revolves around this objective of helping our clients. That is why we exist and do what we do. Also, the culture of our business. We have a great culture as a business, something that everyone who works for Armstrong Watson or with Armstrong Watson comments on.

Do you have any business rules that you swear by?

Only work with people that you like and trust. If you don’t like them or trust them, don’t do business with them.

Do you dress up or down for work?

It depends on what I am doing. I might be a little old fashioned, but I think our clients expect us to look like professionals, so should dress like professionals. Although, very rarely I dig out a tie unless it’s a funeral or a wedding and I do as I am told!

What piece of advice would you give your 18-year-old self?

Success comes from hard work, no magic fairy dust, no short-cuts. Focus on what you can control and influence.

What’s your favourite Cumbrian venue for an event or team away day?

Askham Hall near Penrith comes to mind. Great venue and the food and service are great.

How do you prefer to travel for business?

Train if I can, as it allows me to get work done while travelling, or if very early – have a snooze, which you can’t really do while driving!

What’s your favourite place in Cumbria to relax?

We love Linthwaite House on Windermere to relax. It’s dog friendly too.

Where is your favourite place to eat in Cumbria, and what dish do you recommend?

We love Gianni’s in Carlisle, with friends, a bowl of pasta and a nice bottle (or two) of red wine. Gianni, Fabio and Alex are so welcoming.

What do you miss most about Cumbria when you’re away?

The Lakes and friends. When I’m away with business, I miss my partner Lauren and the dog.