Why did you decide to join the IoD?
As Managing Director (MD) and Board Member of ESB (UK) I wanted to grow and develop my skills and my network in the non-executive director (NED) community. IoD Ireland provided the best opportunity for me to do this.
As IoD Ireland celebrates its 30th Anniversary, do you have any particular memory of the IoD you would like to share?
The many thought-provoking events that have been held over the years.
What is the most important lesson, from your personal or business life, that has guided you the most in being a business leader?
Everyone who works for you is someone's brother/sister; Mum/Dad; husband/wife; son/daughter. Lead people with care and passion. You pay for their hands/minds, but they will give you their heart and commitment if you treat them with care and respect. Keep your stakeholders informed and engaged in a timely manner with your business strategy and decisions.
Is there someone who has had a major impact on you as a leader? Why and how did this person impact your life?
Meeting Tom Byrne (RIP), form IoD Ireland President, was a seminal moment in my career. Tom's ability to see things differently and speak up for what he believed was second to none. Tom gave me huge encouragement to join the IoD for which I am very grateful.
What is the one characteristic that you believe every leader should have?
Self-development. If the leader sets the tone by their own self-development, then the rest of the organisation/department/team take their lead from this. In the very complex and changing world we live in, self-development must be on the top of every leader's agenda.
As IoD Ireland celebrates its 30th Anniversary, what would you hope for the future of governance and leadership over the next 30 years?
I hope that the governance and leadership of organisations will find a way to fully integrate sustainability and all aspects of ESG into business strategy and decisions, beyond what is required from a compliance point of view. Having this focus now will ensure that we start, grow, and develop sustainable businesses for the future.
What do you particularly value from your IoD membership over the last 5 years?
The IoD provides a community of people to share and work through common challenges and opportunities. In most instances we are not direct competitors of each other. We are part of a complex politicial, social, economic, and environmental tapestry in which the success of one organisation is shared across the entire community. It is by sharing that we grow. It is by leading that we grow in a particular direction and bring our people and assets with us. The IoD facilitates this by both the 'growing and developing' of its members.