“If you can get those around you to buy into your strategy and what you are trying to achieve, you are on the road to becoming a leader.”
These were just some of the thoughts shared with business leaders by former Chairman of Eir and Mincon Group Plc, Padraig McManus, as keynote speaker at the PKF-FPM Annual Leadership Talk.
The event was part of the 2018 MLM Management Month initiative, in association with Ulster University Business School held at the Belfast campus.
Born of Northern Ireland parents in Co. Kildare, Padraig McManus graduated as an engineer from UCD in 1973. He then joined the Electricity Supply Board (ESB) following in the footsteps of his father who was also an ESB engineer.
Padraig worked in a number of roles with ESB including serving as CEO for almost 10 years. In 2010, he led the £1bn acquisition of NIE Networks overseeing the financial, political and general stakeholder issues of integrating the business into the ESB Group.
Chairman of Eir (Eircom Holdings Ltd) from 2012 to 2017, he was also Chairman of mining equipment manufacturer Mincon Group Plc from 2013 to 2017.
A Fellow of the Institute of Engineers in Ireland, Padraig is currently President of the Economic and Social Research Institute of Ireland, Chairman of the National Maternity Hospital Foundation and Chairman of the Curragh Racecourse. He is on the Council of Chartered Accountants Ireland and is a former board member of the Irish Management Institute and Business in the Community.
During the one-hour conversation with broadcaster Gerry Kelly, Padraig gave a detailed overview of his career and also talked about the many community projects in which he has been involved including voluntary trips to Ghana to rebuild primary and secondary Schools.
Speaking at the event, which attracted a capacity audience, PKF-FPM Accountants Managing Director, Feargal McCormack, stated that Padraig’s contribution to both social and economic sectors on the island of Ireland has been considerable. “Padraig has shared his business experience and expertise most generously in supporting many organisations and individuals across Ireland and as such, is a significant role model for our own existing and aspiring business leaders. It has been most inspiring to hear his story today and to get some insight into the approach of a great leader.”
Professor Mark Durkin, Executive Dean of the Ulster University Business School, said: “We were delighted to work with Professor Feargal McCormack and his team at PKF-FPM in organising the now very well established Annual Leadership Talk. As a business school that is committed to stimulating entrepreneurial thinking and driving innovative approaches to doing business, it is invaluable to hear from leaders who have practical and real experience. Padraig demonstrated that entrepreneurial flair in his talk and it was an honour to welcome such a successful business figure to share with us his thoughts on leadership.”