Coventry teenager George Hooper is used to receiving advice from his dad on the football pitch at the weekend – but he’s taken listening to his father to a new level after joining the family IT firm.
George, 18, has just become the apprentice at Electric Wharf-based PS4B which offers managed IT services for a range of businesses right across Coventry, Warwickshire and the wider Midlands.
The firm, which celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2020, is owned and run by George’s father, Richard Hooper, and mum, Kerry Hooper, works in the business too.
For ten years George played football under Richard for Finham Park Rangers before the team played its final match in a cup final earlier this year.
And now it is technology rather than tactics that George is being taught by Richard after he joined the company as an apprentice after a stint studying photography at college.
George said: “I was unsure about what I wanted to do as a career and, initially, I wanted to be a photographer. I decided that wasn’t for me and then the opportunity came up to join PS4B, which is the family business.
“I was keen to do it but, of course, there is that doubt at first because you don’t want to upset the family dynamic by working together. But it’s been absolutely brilliant so far.
“Of course, I am learning from dad but I am picking up lots of expertise from the whole team too.”
George is completing a full apprenticeship over the course of the next 15 months through Earlsdon-based JBC and will ultimately become a qualified IT support engineer.
Richard added: “I loved coaching George and his team and our Sunday mornings became a real ritual, so it was a little bit sad when that came to an end.
“I didn’t want to push him into joining the family business but we are growing rapidly and wanted to take on an apprentice so we can expand the team by ‘growing one of our own’.
“I discussed it with George and we decided to go for it. He’s seen the business grow over the years and the commitment and dedication it takes to own and manage an SME.
“It’s great that he is now part of it and he’s already a real asset to the team.”