18 Sigmar consultants braved the Ring of Kerry, a daunting 175km cycle that is steeped in rich history and incredible scenery. Parts of the cycle are set along the Wild Atlantic Way offering breath taking views to those who dare. The day was packed full of hills, spills and thrills as even the most experienced of cyclists were challenged by the harsh wind. After an arduous ten to twelve hours, all 18 team members finished. It was an unforgettable day for all involved, some more than others. From puntures to bikes trying to escape the rack on the motorway. there was never a dull moment. The cycle was one of Sigmar's many charity events for our charity partner Cistic Fibrosis. A huge congratulations to all involved and we look forward to next year!
To celebrate such a successful H1 of 2019, Sigmar held its annual Summer BBQ in Nolita Dublin. All regional offices from around the nation came together to catch up on the last six successful months. The day was full of terrible shirts and bright smiles as highly achieving consultants were given the fruits of their labour. Overall 13 consultants were promoted for outstanding work with 12 consultants being rewarded for their ongoing succesful contribution to the business. A well deserved day out for the company to celebrate H1 and kick off H2!
Taken from Silicon Republic Leaders’ Insights, Sigmar’s Adrian McGennis discusses building a brand overseas and why a ‘land and expand’ model isn’t always the best option. Adrian McGennis is CEO and co-founder at Irish recruitment company Sigmar. Prior to Sigmar, McGennis was managing director with Marlborough and he has been involved in two successful IPOs. He holds a degree in engineering from University College Dublin and has garnered several postgraduate management awards. Founded in 2002, Sigmar has been named as a Best Managed Company by Deloitte for the past three years. Last August it opened a new European talent hub in Co Kerry as it announced plans to create 50 roles. Describe your role and what you do. As part of a team to grow a meaningful, profitable, worthy business and enjoy the experience – this involves developing people in a positive, learning, achieving culture. As well as building great relationships with clients and candidates, we are passionate about contributing to community. How do you prioritise and organise your working life? At all levels we have really great teams at Sigmar, so we get a strong buy-in to the company goals. This will be the basis of prioritisation. Maintaining the culture is the basis for values and growth, so spend a lot of time with colleagues and customers. Thankfully, our partnership with Groupe Adéquat has been very positive and they are like-minded in values, so prioritisation and organisation haven’t changed much. What are the biggest challenges facing your sector and how are you tackling them? Having enjoyed 10 years of strong growth, the potential for economic uncertainty could present a challenge. We are talking with clients more and have the scale and agility to provide flexible solutions for them. Thankfully, we have been innovative in using technology, but we need to be constantly aware of optimising our offering utilising better communication, AI, analytics etc. What are the key sector opportunities you’re capitalising on? We are very positive on the sector, but the rate of change is increasing. We see, therefore, new opportunities in managed services, new sectors, onsite staffing, statement of work etc. Our new model based in Tralee, servicing the IT market in Germany, is working and scaling really well and forms the basis of expanding into new European and US markets. Talent solutions really is an exciting place to be right now. What set you on the road to where you are now? When we completed our MBO in 2009, many of the team were involved. We had ambitions to develop a commercially strong business (which has been successful), but also to build a great Irish business which would be recognised internationally. Innovations like the Talent Summit, Ireland Gateway to Europe and National Employment Week have helped position ourselves to achieve both these goals. What was your biggest mistake and what did you learn from it? We did underestimate the importance of brand when expanding overseas in 2005/2006. Some of our overseas operations did create impact, but with limited resources it was a challenge to develop deep routes through a ‘land and expand’ model. Now, we are successfully servicing clients and developing relationships in overseas locations before opening a significant office. How do you get the best out of your team? The quality and commitment of the team is high so, really, allow them to do their job! We encourage risk and learn from any failures. We do have strong respect and equally celebrate success. From day one we all agreed to our culture/values, so anyone joining Sigmar is clear on where we are going and, hopefully, how to get there. What was your biggest mistake and what did you learn from it? We did underestimate the importance of brand when expanding overseas in 2005/2006. Some of our overseas operations did create impact, but with limited resources it was a challenge to develop deep routes through a ‘land and expand’ model. Now, we are successfully servicing clients and developing relationships in overseas locations before opening a significant office. How do you get the best out of your team? The quality and commitment of the team is high so, really, allow them to do their job! We encourage risk and learn from any failures. We do have strong respect and equally celebrate success. From day one we all agreed to our culture/values, so anyone joining Sigmar is clear on where we are going and, hopefully, how to get there. STEM sectors receive a lot of criticism for a lack of diversity in terms of gender, ethnicity and other demographics. Have you noticed a diversity problem in your sector? What are your thoughts on this and what’s needed to be more inclusive? When I did engineering (a long time ago!), in a class of 250 there were maybe 10 girls, so we’ve improved a bit since then. I do think ongoing positive discussions have helped and will continue to redress the gender balance. We have hosted a few events on diversity and specifically gender balance, and I believe an honest dialogue is required to actually make real change. I believe most people agree where we want to get to, but healthy, honest conversations and listening are required to get us there. As it goes, the recruitment sector has been very inclusive and probably really embraces diversity better than most, maybe because it is a relatively new sector or it’s a meritocracy. Who is your role model and why? If I had to choose a role model right now, it would honestly be Joe Schmidt. I’ve heard a few current and ex-players speaking recently and they are 100pc clear on the objectives and plans. He also seems to instil authenticity, and even humility, into high performance. The analytics, data recording/management, team building, results focus are all very impressive, but the simple imparting a message to ‘do your job’ really works and seemed to be enjoyed. What books have you read that you would recommend? I liked Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari. Didn’t necessarily agree with all his theories, but does make one think. I was recommended Legacy by James Kerr, and I have to say it does simply articulate the collective belief in high standards exhibited by the All Blacks. I am now recommending it to some of our teams to read/review/implement. What are the essential tools and resources that get you through the working week? Phones, a computer and coffee are all good – oh, and a pint on Friday evening. We do use various tools to gather regular data across the company which is important, but I feel equally important is to speak with people about what we need to do as a result of the data.y to Europe and National Employment Week have helped position ourselves to achieve both these goals.
Almost two weeks have passed since Talent Summit, yet the excitement from the event is still very much alive. I met with Talent Summit Founder, Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig to ask him to share some of his key takeaways and highlights from Talent Summit 2019. Kate Costello – “Have the Heart of a Lion Even When You Feel Like a Mouse” After being asked for his top five takeaways, without even a moment to reflect, Robert started with “Kate Costello’s speech was a particularly significant take away”. Kate, who is only 16, spoke at Talent Summit to present the Dermot Costello Outstanding Leadership Award in honour of her father to the Irish women’s hockey team who reached the World Cup finals for the first time ever last summer. In her speech Kate told the story of a mouse who wanted to look bigger and stronger than those he feared so they would fear him. He asked a wizard to change him from a mouse to a cat, then a cat to a dog and then a dog to a lion. After some time, the wizard said, “with the heart of a mouse there is nothing I can do for you”. It’s a powerful statement to those in leadership. Being a leader means being brave in your actions to lead and guide others. You need to be courageousness to lead beyond the odds, have the heart of a lion even if sometimes we feel like a mouse. Robert reflected on the parallel message in Kate’s story of how we can leave a lasting impression on those close to us, shaping and activating change beyond what we expect and, in many cases, never even knowing we’ve impacted on a person. “The fact that Kate stood on the stage, eloquently recounting a story her father once told her, shows the personal impact we can have on those around us, can be truly transformative, beyond what we intend it to be. The irony here is that Kate not only showed the “heart of a lion” as she presented the award to her own heroes, but she herself was demonstrating outstanding leadership through her actions. My takeaway from this is that we inspire and activate those around us, every day in most cases without even realising it.” “Last year, I recalled how spending time with Dermot, was often like a life lesson, as you would come away with a different twist on whatever topic we discussed. It’s clear that the apple didn’t fall far from the tree… Thanks for that lesson Kate!” Robert Gibbs, Chief Human Capital Officer, NASA – The Power of Positive Intent The NASA transformation story shows very clearly how purpose is our defining competitive advantage. Robert reflected on Robert Gibbs keynote which explained how NASA’s raison d'être boils down to the flourishment of human kind which allows them to operate on the fringe of what is commercially viable, giving them the ultimate competitive advantage. “Robert Gibbs also reminded us that change is a ‘contact sport’, it’s personal, constant and unpredictable, requiring continuous communication and feedback”. When Robert later spoke on a panel with Niamh O’Beirne, Partner, EY and Barry Rudden, Director, Sigmar Recruitment, what surfaced in the conversation was the power of presuming positive intent. Belief goes a long way and sometimes to get the best out of people you need to believe in them. Margaret Heffernan – Leading Change Is Human During Margaret Heffernan’s keynote she emphasized how building social capital takes time, focus and energy and if the ingredients are right, can bind human capital to achieve beyond measure. The strength of the social capital creates the foundation for companies to succeed, the components of which are uniquely human; kindness, helpfulness, warmth and candour. Robert went on to say “The thing that struck me is how the ubiquity of loyalty, friendship and comradery in the workplace create a shared commitment to success, something we may struggle to replicate in the gig economy. In short being trusting and trustworthy is the basis of creating a just culture”. Ian McClean – Every Conversation Matters Given that Talent Summit is a humanic conference, Ian argued that conversation is where the rubber hits the road in expressing our humanity. It reminds us that how we make people feel in our presence is the true measure of our engagement. Robert added “every conversation can either create a gap or close a gap in our daily connectivity and we need to be mindful of the residue that every conversation leaves”. Monica Lewinsky - The Importance of Being an Upstander Robert quoted a Mexican proverb when introducing Monica, which in mays ways captured the spirit of her story; “they tried to bury us, but they didn’t realise we were seeds”. Monica Lewinsky’s story, in many ways reflects this juxtaposition of humanity and technology. As the internet catapulted her into the limelight bringing the uninvited attention of the world upon her, it was the compassion of those around her, coupled with personal resilience that brought her back from the brink. Reflecting the theme of this year’s Talent Summit, it’s the human element that has enabled Monica to lead change through her social activism and create a global anti-cyberbullying revolution. “Monica has turned personal trauma into grace and raised a profusion of lessons we can apply in our personal lives, working worlds and within our family units. My main takeaway from spending time with Monica is that each of us can make a difference by showing compassion through our actions, by being an "up-stander". Monica spoke about this in the context of societal change, but the glaringly obvious parallel in our working world, is that as some resist change and others passively act as bystanders, we truly need to firmly stand “for” the purpose behind the change we hope to achieve.” Mirroring Margaret’s Heffernan’s comment on workplace loneliness and Kate’s story of the need for the heart of a lion, when we sometimes feel like a mouse, Monica harpooned the message of individual impact home when she said, “there is power in small numbers when there is consistency over time.” We need to create a narrative steeped in empathy to be truly compassionate in all aspects of our lives. “Our purpose at Talent Summit is to create better working lives as the world of work augments and being more compassionate is really what it all boils down to! "Tanx" for sharing such a powerful message Monica.” …..and tanx to all who supported, spoke, attended and participated at Talent Summit 2019. See you next year!
With Talent Summit just one week away, we couldn’t be more excited to announce our Talent Summit Magazine published in the Irish Times today. You can view each of the magazine articles here: Younger employees expect workplaces to stand for more than profit alone Monica Lewinsky: ‘We are all so much stronger than we can ever imagine’ Companies with engaged employees reap proven benefits How we use universities to bridge companies’ digital skills gap How Irish companies can stay competitive whatever happens with Brexit It’s still all about people in these increasingly digitised workplaces ‘Technology makes the human part of work more important than ever’ Reskilling in real time saves on future costs and disruption The Talent Revolution: Making the future of work succeed Speaker Q&A Employers need to be flexible to retain employees Our Headlining Keynotes Are: Monica Lewinsky: Who will talk about her personal story of empathy and resilience in the digital age Margaret Heffernan: "Leading Change is Human" Bob Gibbs, Chief Human Capital Officer NASA Space Agency: Who will talk about how the growth of private sector space exploration (SpaceX) and how NASA has had to transform while staying true to their purpose “The Talent Summit theme ‘The Talent Revolution: Leading Change’ is about people; as people are the future of work and the driving force behind activating that change. The conference will explore the augmentation of the working world, through traits that are uniquely human on one hand and the technological on the other. We will unlock the latest thinking on the evolving talent supply chain, sustaining performance through engagement, leading beyond the odds, leading organisational transformation and the future of learning and development” – Robert MacGiolla Phadraig, CCO, Sigmar Recruitment You can view our full programme here: Tickets are on sale on the Talent Summit website www.talentsummit.ie
Social activist, global public speaker and contributing editor to Vanity Fair, Monica Lewinsky has been confirmed as the keynote speaker at Talent Summit 2019, for which tickets are now available for purchase. In recent years, Monica has been at the forefront of leading global societal change around the “culture of humiliation”. At the heart of Monica’s personal story and what she advocates for is more human compassion and personal resilience, unique human traits and actions that are fundamental to leading change in transformative times. Talent Summit will take place on Wednesday 27th of February 2019 at the Convention Centre Dublin. Talent Summit has grown to become recognised as one of the most respected and largest HR conferences in Europe. With over 20 global thought leaders contributing and speaking, this summit is aimed at business owners, corporate executives, HR leaders and those with a professional interest in shaping the workforce of tomorrow. Talent Summit was founded by Sigmar Recruitment and is proudly supported by EY Ireland. Welcoming the announcement, Robert Mac Giolla Phádraig, founder of Talent Summit commented: “With the talent agenda ranking as the number one priority for business leaders around the globe, we need to reimagine how we create better workplaces and working lives in an increasingly complex world of work. At its core, Talent Summit is a humanics conference focused on people and our interaction with technology. The workforce is augmenting, becoming more digital, diverse, global and automation-savvy which presents major opportunities for HR leaders to influence how their organisations invest in people in parallel with technology to attract, organise, develop and drive the performance of their people. This year’s theme is “The Talent Revolution; Leading Change” where we will unlock global thought leadership on how HR leaders can lead desired change to develop their workforces.” “We are delighted to partner with Talent Summit again this year. In an environment characterised by disruption and uncertainty, rapid technological development and fast-paced economic growth, successfully leading organisational transformation remains critical. Having culture change and employee experience at the forefront of transformation will be central to achieving sustained success. In addition, to support continued growth, businesses in Ireland need innovative workforce-planning strategies in place to attract the best talent in the market, and to retain and up-skill their existing workforce, equipping them with the skills and expertise needed for the future. The world of work is changing, and a changing working world needs a new approach, with focused and strategic leadership. The calibre of speakers at Talent Summit this year is second to none, and we’re honoured to be part of such an inspiring international line-up. The event promises to be full of stimulating discussion and we’re looking forward to meeting colleagues from Ireland and around the world,” Niamh O’Beirne, Partner, People Advisory Services at EY Ireland, added. The central theme of Talent Summit this year is The Talent Revolution: Leading Change. Key topics covered on the day will include: The New Talent Supply Chain: Buy, Build, Borrow or Bots Unlocking Performance through Engagement. Leadership in the Digital age Leading Organizational Transformation & Cultural Preservation Future of Learning, Development and re-skilling Keynotes from over 20 national and international expert speakers will be given on talent; attraction, development, leadership, performance and transformation strategies. There will be real life case studies from successful global and local brands, as well as panel discussions and audience Q&A. Tickets for Talent Summit are now available for purchase. Please see www.talentsummit.ie
Congratulations to our COO, Frank Farrelly, who has been elected President of the National Recruitment Federation (NRF) for a third term. Frank is co-founder of Sigmar Recruitment and is listed in the Staffing Industry Analysts Top 100 Most Influential Staffing Leaders in Europe. On being reappointed for the position of President of the NRF Frank commented, “I am delighted to be taking up the mantle of NRF President for a third year. It is an honour to work with CEO Geraldine King and her team as well as the 3 committees whose immense efforts have contributed to so much success. The last 2 years has been a great journey on a range of topics such as education, standards, policy, membership, Garda Vetting, Data Protection, and the WEC conference to name but a few. As an industry our members do great work for candidates and clients across the country. Recruitment continues to evolve and will continue to do so as ‘work’ changes more rapidly than ever before. For 2019 the NRF will continue to raise our standards, be innovative and provide real value to our members. We plan to do this through improving education and through increasing our contribution to the skills and recruitment agenda.” Previous to Frank’s 2 years as President he has 7 years as a committee member, Treasurer and Secretary for the National Recruitment Federation in Ireland, before being elected Vice President in 2014. He was part of the team that lobbied Government on the Agency Workers Act, Zero Hours Contracts and ‘If & When’ contracts. He leads the team that lobbies the government on employment legislation, recruitment matters and GDPR, and was instrumental in helping the NRF secure an Apprenticeship in Recruitment practice on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications in 2018.
The 12th annual National Recruitment Federation Awards took place in the Shelbourne Hotel on Friday night, November 30th. Sigmar were delighted to attend and to come away with not one but two awards on the night. Best in Practice: Sigmar IT It’s been a big year for our IT Team, with the launch of their European IT Recruitment talent hub in Tralee, so picking up Best in Practice Technical, IT & Telecoms in one of the most closely contested categories of the night was the cherry on top. Speaking of the award, Associate Director, Eoin Langdon said that he was delighted their hard work had been recognised. NRF Cert RP Graduate of the Year: Julie Valentine The NRF Cert RP Graduate of the Year Award recognises those who have achieved the highest results in the NRF Certificate in Recruitment Practice exams in 2018. Sigmar was thrilled for our Sales Recruiter Julie Valentine to be recognised for achieving the highest grade of the 2018 graduates. Speaking on Julie’s win, Sigmar Director, Malwina King said; “I am truly delighted that Julie achieved Top Graduate of the Year at the 2018 NRF Awards. Julie, we are super proud of you and your success is very well deserved! Not only was Julie one of the most active participants in Sigmar’s Recruitment Excellence Programme but this award is a testament to her hard work, industry expertise and ‘can do attitude’ that is appreciated by both clients and candidates alike. Well done Julie!” We were also delighted to have Claire Kelly shortlisted for Permanent Recruitment Consultant of the Year and for our Office Support and Technical, Engineering & Science teams being shortlisted in their respective categories.
Frank Farrelly, Sigmar COO and President of the National Recruitment Federation, makes the Staffing Industry Analysts Top 100 Most Influential Staffing Leaders in Europe for the second year running. Frank is COO and co-founder of Sigmar Recruitment and has served as president of the National Recruitment Federation’s executive committee since 2016. He leads the team that lobbies the government on employment legislation, recruitment matters and GDPR, and was instrumental in helping the Federation secure an Apprenticeship in Recruitment practice on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications in 2018. Also on the list is Jean-Marc Brun (pictured below), Founder and Chairman of Groupe Adéquat. In 2018, Sigmar Recruitment formed a strategic partnership with Groupe Adéquat, one of the 50 largest global staffing firms in the world. Under Jean-Marc Brun’s leadership, Groupe Adéquat grew to become one of the largest staffing firms in France. He is chairman of the supervisory board of Groupe Adéquat, which he founded in 1987. The group reported total revenue of €889 million in 2017, up 21% from 2016, and estimates it will reach a turnover of €1 billion for the first time in 2018. Groupe Adéquat’s five-year mission is to become one of the top 25 staffing firms in the world, both through organic growth and continued investment in high-potential international brands.