• Jo Ball

    Joanna Ball

Joanna Ball


5 bits of advice to my teenage self…

  • Don’t worry

  • If you fail it isn’t a disaster

  • Most people feel like a fraud at least some of the time, it’s not just you

  • Trust your instincts

  • Be kind to everyone, most of all yourself

About me

As a teenager…
I desperately wanted to be one of the cool kids but really I was happiest reading a book or doing school work. I hated being teased (and if I’m honest with myself bullied) for being a swot and did everything in my power to prove that I wasn’t interested in lessons. Eventually I found a group of friends who I believed really understood me, and had a fantastic time partying, with little time for studying. It was fun, but instinctively I knew that I loved learning and wanted more than anything to go to University. After busking my O-Levels I chose tough science A-Levels with a dream of being a Dr. But there’s only so far busking takes you and I was shocked to totally fail. It was such a valuable lesson. I’d secured a 2 E offer from Oxford University and wanted to go and find my tribe. After a hasty re-take I managed to scrape in.


After school…
I felt so fortunate to have schemed my way into one of the world’s top Universities to study Psychology. I knew as soon as I got there I would find my tribe – people who understood me, who loved to study but also loved a good time, I was going to finally fit in somewhere! Of course it wasn’t quite like that .. I was so miserable and lonely in that first term that I went home every weekend to see my boyfriend and inevitably fell pregnant.
And then my life changed forever, my daughter  Daisy was born in the summer holidays before my 2nd year, I was back studying with new found determination and that much longed-for group of friends. I loved Oxford and took every advantage I could from it. Daisy and I graduated with a 2.1, I then went on to do a qualification in Journalism before joining Granada TV.
Now I’m…
27 years into my TV career I now run an independent production company called Ricochet. I’ve worked as a Commissioning Editor at C4 and the BBC as well as a producer and director. I’ve worked on everything from very serious documentaries to entertainment programmes – from The Repair Shop to Supernanny, from Born to Be Different to Bare Necessities, from Food Unwrapped to Grand Designs and everything in between.  I love meeting people, finding out about them and telling their stories.