PUNCHING A CLASS ABOVE

 byCaroline Baldwin.
 Published: 29/09/2016

Ireland is a country that has made a big impact on the world for such a small island with a mere five million people. We have always been known for our Hollywood stars like Maureen O’Hara in the 1940’s up to Liam Neeson, Colin Farrell and Jamie Dornan in modern day. We have made an impact on music too, with U2, Thin Lizzy and The Cranberries. But in recent times, perhaps we’ve made the most impact and headlines in the commercial world. And yes, we have a competitive tax rate, and yes we speak English, and yes we’re located close to the US, but having spoken to and asked the question of “why Ireland?” to so many of these multinationals who have chosen Ireland as a significant base for their operations, none of those are the reasons for being based here.

It’s the people. It’s such a cliché and somewhat arrogant point of view but it’s true. We have always excelled beyond our supposed limitations and this is a characteristic that is recognised by the top multinationals who have invested in our humble nation. We get things done rather than talk about it, we excel rather than aspire and probably more than anything, we’re fighters. A never say die attitude is massively valuable in modern day corporate life.

We have seen first-hand how multinationals have now taken to promoting their Irish employees to senior leadership positions that were previously well out of reach for us lowly Irish. Now in the upper echelons of large multinationals such as Apple, Google, Intel, Pfizer, Alexion and more, we are seeing high achieving Irish striving to make an impact on the world. It truly is that grandiose mentality of wanting to leave a legacy, make a difference and go beyond expectations that has driven us to consistently over-achieve. I can’t see this stopping any time soon. Over half of Irish go onto third level (51.1%) which is the highest in the EU, a full 15.3% higher than the EU average; the talent pool is being stretched to its limits in order to sustain the level of foreign direct investment; and the appetite for Ireland has only grown since Brexit. We’re now in a golden age for senior executives in the finance, technology, food and pharmaceutical industries where the possibilities are limitless and the thirst for our talent is stronger than ever before.