What is it like being the Irish General Manager?
It’s a very challenging role. I progressed into this job after taking part in the Maxi Development Course, where I was able to gain more insight on how to be a manager and that gave me the confidence to apply. There’s a lot of different aspects of this job that I have to look at, but I thrive when it gets busy. However with the constant changes and the imbalances of the Irish market can be difficult. With Brexit looming it has gotten more difficult to plan ahead until we know what’s going to happen.
What would you say is your favourite part of management?
I definitely would say that the most enjoyable part of the role is getting out to meet the customers face to face, building relationships with them – instead of seeing emails or having phone calls you know who you’re speaking to once you’ve met them. I also like bringing new businesses into the company.
You also manage the Dublin Depot: how difficult is that given that you are based in Warrington?
There is only so much you can influence with people you don’t work with closely everyday – it also depends on how the atmosphere is over there: if there is tension in the office there’s not much you can do to break that when you’re in an office over waters! We do a lot of communicating over phone calls and emails which makes management more difficult. I’ve had to get better at listening to people deeply: after all, they might say they’re ok when they’re actually struggling. It’s possible, but it’s harder than reading people face-to-face. It’s been a learning curve for me to accomplish but one that I’ve enjoyed.
What’s the most difficult part of your job?
The hardest part about managing is the fact that when I was one of the planners, I was on the same level as some of my colleagues in Warrington. The change in dynamic was difficult to learn, especially to learn how to stand apart as their manager rather than their friend. The main part about being a manager of people is learning how to get the best out of them. I have a different approach for everyone I work with.
Your work with your brother: how do you balance your personal and professional relationships?
Working with my brother can be challenging – it depends heavily on what mood he or I are in that day. Being related we can either bounce off one another or it can go the other way.