There can be no denying that the Irish economy has benefited hugely from foreign direct investment, particularly from the US. The statistics speak for themselves; today there are 700 US companies with Irish operations directly employing 165,000 people. But, the historical economical and political US-Irish relationship works both ways. With Murphys, Kennedys and O’Neills making their presence known in boardrooms the length and breadth of the 50 States, Ireland is well represented in the highest echelons on US soil. Likewise, the statistics on that side of the Atlantic speak for themselves; there are also 700 Irish companies with operations in the US who employ 100,000 US citizens. Recent changes to the political environment in the form of US protectionism has undoubtedly threatened our status as the location of choice for US companies, making up 12.1% of US FDI investment into Europe despite accounting for just 1% of the entire European economy. At a time of green shoots growth in the aftermath of one of the worst recessions the State has known, this hard won reputation in now in jeopardy. Speaking at the Boston College Ireland Business Council symposium, John Harthorne, CEO MassChallenge described protectionism as grabbing the largest slice of the pie. The responsibility of leadership should be to increase the size, not of the slice, but of the pie itself. So, what can business leaders do? Well, of course we can leave it to the Government and State agencies to do their job, or else we can get out there ourselves and deliver the message that Ireland is still a great place to do business. That is exactly what Ireland Gateway to Europe did on Wednesday April 11, 2018, when a delegation of more than 40 Irish business leaders arrived in Washington to deliver the message that Ireland’s trade partnership with the US is stronger than ever, is truly bilateral and that Ireland remains the location of choice for FDI in Europe. Ireland Gateway to Europe met with their US counterparts and political representatives on Capitol Hill with the purpose of strengthening existing business relationships and create new ones. This initiative is a not-for-profit annual trade mission made up of professional advisory firms who travel the US annually to provide a secure resource network for business expansion to help US investment succeed in setting up operations in Ireland. Founded in 2012 as a response to the economic challenges at that time of global recession, Ireland Gateway to Europe is now in its seventh year of US, UK and global trade missions. Ireland has traditionally enjoyed a particularly strong business, cultural and political relationship with the US. However, in light of the recent announcements of trade tariffs, data privacy, immigration and other protectionist policies, our concern is that there may be a perception that Irish-US trade linkages may have subsequently diminished. The fact of the matter is that the transatlantic economy grew stronger, not weaker over the past year, as did Irish -US trade with US exports to Ireland up 9% and imports to Ireland up 6%. While the Washington mission was the focal point of the 2018 trade mission, the second leg of the trip saw the group travel to Boston to engage directly with the US business community at the stateside launch of the transatlantic Boston College Ireland Business Council (BCIBC). Having launched this side of the Atlantic in Dublin last October, the US BCIBC launch took the form of a Global Leadership Symposium where US CEOs met with their Irish counterparts. The event looked at Global Leadership, where a panel of global CEOs discussed how they, as a transatlantic leadership community, can create opportunities against the backdrop of economic challenges. The purpose of the BCIBC is to establish new, and strengthen existing, transatlantic business ties between the two countries, and it is designed to enhance transatlantic business between the US and Ireland through creating connections that allow for entrepreneurial ventures to grow and prosper. The Global Leadership Symposium is one of a series of planned BCIBC CEO Exchange events that will take place twice annually over the coming years, both in Ireland and in the US. The nest event is scheduled for Dublin this coming October. Founded by the Global Leadership Institute, Boston College, and Ireland, Gateway to Europe, and Chaired by Neil Naughton of GlenDimplex, the main aim of the BCIBC is to bring influential business leaders from both communities together once a year in Dublin and in Boston to create one deeply connected transatlantic trade artery. By establishing the BCICB, the tight commercial and social bonds we share with the US can be strengthened and build upon bilaterally, business to business, in spite of any potential external or internal protectionist political policies. It’s widely known that cultural ties between Massachusetts and Ireland are deep but possibly lesser known are the strength of economic ties with 11,000 people employed by Irish companies there and Ireland being the 6th largest exporter from MA. With threats from the uncertainty of the Brexit situation ringing in our ears from the East and murmurings of protectionism coming from the West, Ireland is again in a unique position to act as the economic transatlantic hub. What will the future hold? As it stands nobody knows for certain, but the community of transatlantic business leaders has a collective, critical role to play to ensure the future foundation of business relations is maintained for generations to come. Those business relationships benefit both Ireland and the US. Let’s both grow our slices of the pie by growing the pie itself. Article featured on The Business Post
Sir Ken Robinson, one of the world’s leading thinkers on creativity and innovation in the workplace spoke at Talent Summit 2018. As an advisor to Fortune 500 companies and governments in Europe, Asia and the United States, Sir Ken Robinson helps transform organisations’ corporate culture to focus more on fostering and developing creativity. His New York Times best-selling books also help people tap into their creative potential. His ideas and research have made him a popular speaker on TED Talks. In fact, his 2006 and 2010 presentations have been seen by more than 350 million people in 160 countries, making Robinson the most-viewed speaker in the history of Ted.com. Talent Summit was held in the Convention Centre, Dublin on the 22nd February 2018. Founded by Sigmar Recruitment, Talent Summit has grown to become one of the largest HR & Leadership conferences in Europe, showcasing the latest thinking on talent topics from around the world. Its mission is to share thought leadership on talent to build better workplaces and working lives in an increasingly complex world of work. Talent Summit 2018 Speakers included: Sir Ken Robinson - Worlds No. 1 TedTalk Speaker Dr Peter Lovatt - Dance Psychologist, University of Hertfordshire Johnny Campbell - CEO, Social Talent Dennis Layton - Global Deputy Leader, People Advisory Services, EY Karen Ní Bhróin - Conductor in Training, RTÉ Choirs, Orchestras and Quartets David Barrett - Chief Commercial Officer, cut-e Rob Williams - Director of Employer Insights, Indeed Find out more about upcoming events on www.talentsummit.ie
Recruitment agencies are often underestimated. A lot of people aren’t aware of the value a recruitment agency can have on a person’s job search or a company’s search for candidates. We have created a list of the most common myths associated with recruitment agencies, to set the record straight once and for all… “Recruitment Agencies are Expensive” One of the most common assumptions people have with recruitment agencies is, that you have to pay an agency to help find you a job. This is completely false. The way it works is that a recruitment consultant receives a fee from their client for placing relevant and qualified candidates in a job. You don’t pay the recruiter; the recruiter is paid by the agency they work for and the company who hires the jobseeker. “Companies can look after their own Recruitment. Agencies are Obsolete” Finding the right employee can be a long and complex process that even the most established human resources department in a large company can find difficult. Many companies utilize the expertise of recruitment agencies. With agencies having such a large bank of candidates on file and their own pool of specialist recruitment consultants dedicated to finding talent, recruitment agencies are invaluable to companies struggling to fill certain roles. “Recruiters don’t have Industry Knowledge” Often people think recruiters don’t understand the industry they are recruiting for. This is incorrect. Reputable recruitment consultants specialise in the areas they recruit for and have vast product knowledge of their market. Often a recruiter has a background in the area they recruit for or he/she is trained in that area so they understand what is required to work in that field. “Recruitment Agencies don’t care about Jobseekers” The perception of recruitment consultants is that they don’t care about their candidates and only want to place them in a job so they can make their commission. This may be true of some agencies, so you want to make sure you work with a reputable company. The success of recruitment agencies is dependent on the quality of the candidate’s they put forward to their clients i.e. your success is their success. Therefore, your agency should be working with you to find you a suitable position, provide you with detailed interview preparation and essentially hold your hand throughout the process.
The 2017 Recruitment International Awards took place in Guild Hall London last night. The awards were presented at a black-tie gala dinner with over 400 senior directors and CEOs attend the spectacular evening. The world’s largest recruitment industry awards program is in its 11th year and provides recruitment companies with an opportunity to win some of the most coveted accolades in the sector. The iconic RI trophy recognises innovation and best practice and is a wonderful celebration of the recruitment profession. Sigmar Recruitment are delighted to have picked up the Award for Best Client Service and were one of only two Irish Winners at the awards. Sigmar CEO, Adie McGennis said, ”we are honoured and delighted to win this prestigious award, particularly against strong international competition. To be awarded Top in Client Services against thousands of recruitment companies is testament to Sigmar’s training and commitment to clients, innovative national initiatives but mainly our consultants’ innate passion to exceed client expectations. We’d like to thank RI and our clients and we’ll certainly celebrate at our Xmas party in Malaga!!!”
6am My 10-month-old alarm clock, ie beautiful third daughter, wakes me every morning without fail. This is soon followed by two more little bedheaded beauties tiptoeing into my bedroom for a cuddle before I “swan off” to work, as my wife calls it (I have to admit that it does often feel like this as I love what I do). I catch the news on Morning Ireland as I drive to work and flick through The Irish Times business pages as I pick up my habitual morning coffee and porridge in Munchies on Baggot Street. 8am I like to arrive early and typically spend the first hour dealing with overnight developments and activating meetings for the days ahead. As chief commercial officer at Sigmar Recruitment, I work with an amazing team of 120 who have a shared commitment to succeed, which creates a truly unique culture built on autonomy, where we all act and behave like founders. 9am I immerse myself in the action, tendering for new business, designing talent solutions for clients and interviewing for staff – we recently announced the creation of 150 jobs. I’m also currently busy designing a compact MBA programme for our leadership team with Trinity Business School and University of Notre Dame. 10.30am This is my meeting time – clients, collaborators and stakeholders. I like to go to Residence as it’s close by and private. I’m also founder of the Talent Summit, Ireland’s largest HR and leadership conference, that promotes better workplaces and better working lives. This, for me, is the North Star in terms of purpose and puts us at the centre of the rapidly changing world of work. I’m also plotting a Talent Talks live event in the National Gallery for October. 1pm I hit the gym at least three days a week and use this time to listen to podcasts and research speakers for upcoming events. The afternoon is usually bustling as corporate America awakens so I often dine “al desko”. We are also co-founders of “Ireland, Gateway to Europe” (gatewaytoeurope.com) a trade mission we have been bringing to the US for the past six years and this year we are bringing a delegation of 50 business leaders on a three-day mission to Palo Alto and San Francisco on September 26-27. As a result, my afternoons are currently jam-packed with calls as the sun moves from East to West. 6pm If entertaining clients, I like to go to Suesey Street, Fitzwilliam Place, but most days I try to leave the office by 6.15pm. As much as I enjoy what I do, there is nothing like the excitement I feel when I reach Bushy Park, knowing that just around the corner I’m about to see my family. 8pm Grab a bite to eat and maybe jump on a couple of calls with clients on the West Coast. Read a couple of pages before bed – currently enjoying Shifting Gears by Ryan O’Reilly, a super take on resilience and motivation. Weekends With my girls – goblin hunting in the forest is the latest. Might do Foam in Terenure for breakfast and, if we’re lucky, the odd date night: TapHouse in Ranelagh if going casual, or Shanahan’s on the Green if going all out. I LOVE VISITING … SAN FRANCISCO There is no other city as vibrant or as innovative from a business perspective. The energy is infectious and I always leave San Fran a little drained but full of hope and aspiration for my ventures back in Ireland.Our trade mission this month is our third time bringing IGTE back to the Bay Area and we are very excited to return. BOSTON I’m on the advisory board of the Boston College, Ireland Business Council, which brings me to Boston frequently. I love staying at the Liberty Hotel – a former jail overlooking Charles River, with a great running track over to Cambridge and back. It’s also close to 75 Chestnut – one of the best neighbourhood restaurants in Boston – and a short train ride to the JFK Library and Museum. NICE We’ve been lucky enough to bring our Sigmar team away on our Christmas party each year and hit Nice twice in recent times. A great base to explore all the French Riviera has to offer, from lunch outside Café de Paris in Monaco, watching how the other half live, to visiting stunning, hilltop, Medieval towns such as St Paul de Vence or Éze. Sigmar Recruitment CCO Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig is the driving force behind the Ireland Gateway to Europe trade mission that travels to California this month to boost transatlantic trade.
Last week a team from Sigmar Recruitment lead a delegation of 25 companies to California to promote Ireland as an investment location for US companies that are considering internationalising. This was the 7th annual Ireland Gateway To Europe trip to the US. Palo Alto – 26th September On Tuesday morning the group headed to the Sheraton Hotel in Palo Alto to address a tech audience from Silicon Valley. Following a welcome by Sigmar CEO Adie McGennis, the first panel discussed the post-Brexit European economic landscape, GDPR, and how will US policy changes affect transatlantic trade? Panelists were Gareth Keane, Snr. Investment Manager, Qualcomm Ventures; Gerald Brady, Managing Director at Silicon Valley Bank; Deirdre Ceannt, VP Foreign Direct Investment at Bank of Ireland; David Carthy, Partner at William Fry. The panel was moderated by Ashlinn Marron, President of the Irish Network Bay Area. The 2nd panel was moderated by Sigmar CCO Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig, who discussed the challenges and opportunities of operating and scaling in Europe with Paraic Hayes, VP Emerging Technologies at IDA Ireland; Julie Kinsella, VP Enterprise Sales Development at Salesforce; Ananth Avva, COO & CFO at Wrike; and Ryan Pittington, Operations Manager at Asana. Following the event, the delegation went on to take part in a masterclass in design thinking at the D School at Stanford University. The group then headed to Google HQ in Mountainview for a tour and talk about culture at the company before heading back to San Francisco for dinner. San Francisco – 27th September On Thursday morning the group held another “Scaling In Europe” breakfast event in the newly refurbished Hibernia Bank in downtown San Franciso. The building was kindly offered the group by Dolmen Property Group. The first panel moderated by Ashlinn Marron, who discussed the european economy and upcoming data protection legislation with Sean Randolph, Senior Director at the Bay Area Council Economic Institute; Gerald Brady from Silicon Valley Bank; Conor Brogan from AIB and Andrew McIntyre who heads up William Fry’s San Francisco Office. The 2nd panel was again moderated by Sigmar CCO Robert who talked about how easy it is for US companies to set up Ireland with Deirdre Moran, VP Emerging Technologies at IDA Ireland; Julie DeBuhr, Director at New Relic; and Jim Kelliher, CFO at Actifio. The group then spent the evening at the offices of accountancy firm EisnerAmper on Market Street for drinks and discussion around building transatlantic culture. Consul General Robert O’Driscoll welcomed the group which was made up of alumni of Trinity College’s MBA programme, alumni of Boston College as well as the Ireland Gateway To Europe delegation. Robert from Sigmar had a fireside chat with Patty McCord, former Chief Talent Officer at Netflix, about her much famed culture deck which she co-authored and has been viewed over 16 million times. They were then joined by Geraldine Finn from Twitter and Shane Murphy from Adroll who had a lively and interesting discussion about the similarities and differences in workplace culture on both sides of the pond. A big thanks to our speakers, hosts and delegation for making it such a great week.
US AND IRISH BUSINESS LEADERS CONVENE IN DUBLIN IN SHOW OF SUPPORT FOR CONTINUED TRANSATLANTIC TRADE AND FDI AT THE LAUNCH OF THE BOSTON COLLEGE IRELAND BUSINESS COUNCIL. Dublin, Thursday 19 October, 2017 – Some of Ireland’s most respected and influential business leaders gathered at the Merrion Hotel last Night, Wednesday 18 October, 2017 to launch the Boston College Ireland Business Council. The Boston College Ireland Business Council is designed to enhance transatlantic business between the US and Ireland through creating connections that allow for entrepreneurial ventures to grow and prosper. Borne from the success of the 2016 Aer Lingus American College Football Classic and founded by the Global Leadership Institute, Boston College, and Ireland, Gateway to Europe, and Chaired by Neil Naughton of GlenDimplex, the purpose of the Boston College Ireland Business Council is to bring influential business leaders from both communities together once a year in Dublin and in Boston to create one deeply connected transatlantic trade and foreign direct investment artery. Guests on the night included Boston College alumnus Denis O’Brien and Fergal Naughton, CEO GlenDimplex Group, and speakers included Paul Coulson, Chairman Ardagh Group plc and Neil Naughton, Chair GlenDimplex. Commenting on the launch of the Council, co-founder Dr. Bob Mauro, Director Global Leadership Institute, Boston College says: “Boston College was established in 1863 to educate Boston’s Irish immigrant community and to help form leaders capable of addressing the world’s most urgent problems. The Boston College Ireland Business Council (BCIBC) proudly builds on that tradition by connecting business leaders in Ireland and Boston, facilitating discussions, and creating economic prosperity through transatlantic trade. Working with our partners in the Ireland, Gateway to Europe and Aer Lingus Classic, we can create real benefits for people in Ireland and Boston”. Ireland Gateway To Europe (IGTE) is a not-for-profit annual trade mission made up of 30+ professional advisory firms who travel the US to showcase Ireland as Europe’s premier investment location through a series of investor events and engagements. The IGTE vision is to provide companies seeking to expand into Europe with a secure resource network for business expansion, and access to an experienced, professional network of service providers to help investments succeed quicker. Speaking at the event Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig of Ireland Gateway to Europe, leadership team said: “Ireland remains one of the best places in the world to do business and without doubt, one of our strongest international relationships has been, and still is, with the US, something that has recently come under threat due to political uncertainty on both sides of the Atlantic. By establishing the Boston College Ireland Business Council, the tight commercial and social bonds we share with the US can be strengthened and built upon bilaterally business to business in spite of any potential external political threats. “Indeed, we have just returned from the US where we met with business leaders in San Francisco and in Silicon Valley. The vision of our mission was to encourage and educate US companies who are looking to expand into Europe to choose Ireland as their location of choice. We aim to supply the necessary information, build trust and provide contacts in Ireland for these companies to execute their plans.” Hosting the launch of the Boston College Ireland Business Council was Neil Naughton, Chair GlenDimplex. He said: “On September 2, 2016, Georgia Tech narrowly defeated Boston College in Aviva Stadium in the Aer Lingus American College Football Classic. In addition to the game itself the steering committee and partners were responsible for arranging other sporting, cultural, academic, business and social events. The weekend was deemed a success for Ireland on many fronts; in addition to welcoming the 25,000 visitors and their additional €56m spend many relationships, both business and social, were formed. “As part of the legacy of the 2016 Aer Lingus College Football Classic and, following on from the Boston College CEO Club lunch in the Mansion House the day before the game, we are establishing the Boston College Ireland Business Council (BCIBC). The purpose of this council is to cultivate, nurture and encourage business relationships between Ireland and our Bostonian brothers. Our overall objective is for attendees to engage with the discussion and to network but specifically to take insights from panellist’s thought leadership to help build better transatlantic business relationships.” Attendees included both Irish CEOs of international companies as well as European Heads of US organisations. Paschal Donoghue, Minister for Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform was also present as was a delegation of Boston based business leaders and the leadership team from Boston College. On the evening, there was be a panel discussion on Global Leadership. The following global heavyweight Business Leaders contributed on the night: Willie Walsh, CEO IAG (6th largest airline group in the world) Paul Coulson, Chairman Ardagh Group plc (3rd largest material packaging company in the world) Siobhán Talbot, CEO Glanbia (#1 performance nutrition brand portfolio in the world) Neil Naughton, Chair GlenDimplex (largest heater manufacturer in the world) The Boston College Ireland Business Council advisory board: Neil Naughton, Chair Glen Dimplex (Chairman) Dr. Bob Mauro, Director Global Leadership institute, Boston College, USA Jim Kelliher, CFO Actifio, USA Robert Mac Giolla Phadraig, CCO Sigmar Recruitment, Leader; Ireland, Gateway to Europe
On Thursday 5th October 2017, the National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin played host to TALENT TALKS, five 25-minute talks on the theme of leadership. This half-day symposium was the first in a series of talent and leadership events produced by Sigmar Recruitment in association with EY, culminating in the Talent Summit (www.talentsummit.ie), which will take place on 22nd February 2018 in the Convention Centre Dublin. The purpose of TALENT TALKS was to share inspirational thinking on leadership styles to create better workplaces and better working lives. TALENT TALKS comprised five of the brightest minds from the arts, business, consulting and academic worlds to share thought leadership through new thinking, leadership philosophy and personal leadership stories. First to take to the stage was Professor Kevin Whelan, director of the Keough Naughton Centre, University of Notre Dame. Professor Whelan looked at leadership through a historical lens, focusing on the lessons we can learn from outstanding political leadership of past Irish history, such as Daniel O’Connell and Maude Gonne who reshaped the role of women in society. Professor Whelan’s theme was Creative Leadership: Looking at the Past to Frame the Future. Second up was Niamh O’Beirne, partner of Performance & Talent, People Advisory Services, EY Ireland, whose theme was Resilient Leadership: Resilience as the Foundation of Leading Change. O’Beirne focused on the importance of building resilience in our employees and focus on wellbeing and mental health due to greater levels of stress and change in the ‘always on’ world. Resilience can be thought of as our capacity to manage change. Ian McClean, founder of Flow Group, took to the stage to offer his unique take on leadership and the role that communication plays in leading. McClean’s theme was GreenLine Leadership: Making Every Interaction Matter. Karen Ní Bhróin, conductor in Training at RTÉ Choirs, Orchestras and Quartets discussed the vital role she plays as a conductor in leading an entire orchestra to harmony rather than a cacophony of noise, which is all an orchestra is without its leader. Ní Bhróin’s theme was Facilitative Leadership: Making Music with No Instrument. Finally, under the theme of Purposeful Leadership: Interpreting Moral Commitment to Stakeholders, Amanda Shantz, associate professor of human resources and organisational behaviour at Trinity Business School took to the stage to offer her insight on the role ethics and morality plays in effective leadership. The talks were followed by a panel discussion with Marius Smyth, VP EMEA, Adroll and Gerard Murnaghan, VP EMEA, Indeed on how we can challenge conventional thinking on leadership in an increasingly complex world of work. Speaking after the event, Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig, CCO of Sigmar Recruitment and chair of TALENT TALKS, said, “Leadership is seen by employers as being a key competitive advantage and organisations are now focused on cultivating the leaders of tomorrow, more than ever before. “With the rise of millennial leaders and a shift from control and command leadership to decentralised leadership, leaders of all ages, genders and cultures are poised to lead in 2018 and beyond. Leadership is increasingly seen by organisations as action that creates business momentum as opposed to a function within an organisation. There is a broad realisation that “followship” is in fact the critical point of engagement that drives discretional effort and delivers desired results.”
Sigmar Recruitment and William Fry held a breakfast briefing to discuss ‘Competition & Compliance – The New Public Sector Talent Landscape’ on Friday the 23rd of June. Experts from various backgrounds and sectors discussed the key features of the Protected Disclosures (Whistleblowing) legislation, and what employers must do to comply and/or protect themselves. Best practice assessment and selection strategies in the public sector were also discussed such as how to maximise objectivity and fairness in your assessment strategies and to understand how potential candidates may fit into your organisation. Finally the ways we can make a real difference through the process of recruitment and the key challenges that we face in getting not just the selection decisions right but in maximising the opportunities for enhancing the well-being and overall performance of the organisation were teased out. Speakers on the day included; Bernard Brogan, PepTalk Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig, CCO, Sigmar Recruitment Marina Morrissey, Manager, Sigmar Managed Services Catherine O’Flynn, Partner, William Fry Jeffrey Greene, Employment Group Associate, William Fry Nuala Clayton, Employment Group Associate, William Fry Laura Phelan, Global Operaons Director, cut-e Group Bryan Andrews, Managing Director, BA & Associates and Former CEO, PAS Ailis McSweeney, Director of All-Things, PepTalk