IWD Part V: Great Leaders Strive for Excellence
In this final chapter of our special Blog Series celebrating International Women’s Day, we share stories from two more leaders who inspire at Abtran – Head of Operations, Laura McCarthy and Business Improvement Analyst, Marie O’Connell.
Laura McCarthy is responsible for leading the delivery of service excellence across Abtran’s highly regulated, Financial Services & Public Sector clients. By staying true to her core values, Laura leads by example through her relentless work ethic and her focus on building positive and proactive relationships.
I think taking up the position of Head of Operations in March 2016 has been my most significant career move since joining Abtran in 2014. Throughout my career I’ve had the opportunity to work with such fantastic people across so many different sectors. What I enjoy most about working at Abtran is the diversity. No two days are the same. It’s a constant motivation.
My biggest inspiration was my father. He was a successful business owner who inspired those around him. His work ethic never faltered and he understood the true value of people, both from a customer and employee viewpoint.
Stay true to your Values
Staying true to my core values is extremely important. I think that’s the best advice I could give to anyone in their career; it’s not about comparing yourself to others. It’s about aspiring to be a better version of yourself than you were yesterday.
Build on Strong Foundations
In my experience, successful teams and great performance are built on the foundations of a strong company culture and I look to build on this every day with my teams. Culture is not just about what we represent as a service provider. It’s also about the values we live by and how we behave towards each other every day.
Marie O’Connell is a Business Improvement Analyst at Abtran, a team responsible for managing quality and driving continuous improvement throughout the company. Marie’s willingness to connect and help those around her is a trait very much admired and recognised by her team. Marie inspires others through her dedication to her family as well as her relentless pursuit of excellence in everything she does.
I’ve had lots of significant moments during my career at Abtran but there are a few that particularly stand out. For instance, I recently completed a Business Improvement Project for a client that I project managed from start to finish. The task involved designing a complete quality process which required the participation of multiple departments. There were a lot of moving pieces to this project and a huge amount of analysis and documentation. The sense of achievement on completing the project and receiving such positive feedback from the client was amazing.
I am really proud of what I’ve achieved here at Abtran and also what I’ve achieved in my personal life. I began life at Abtran six years ago as an Advisor and took every opportunity that came my way to learn and develop. No two days are ever the same. You never know what you will be working on next. It’s one of the most exciting parts about working here and I enjoy the variety and motivating challenges that brings.
Without getting too sentimental, I am the proud mother of two amazing boys. Parenthood is a huge responsibility and a great privilege. It’s an ever-changing journey that inspires me to do my best every day.
Strive for Excellence
I am a true believer that you never stop learning in life and I’m always pushing myself to try new things and take on new challenges. I recently decided to go back to college and complete the ACCA exams, which is a big commitment. The idea of learning a new skill and gaining a new qualification is both exciting and nerve-wrecking. The advice I’d give to anyone looking to progress their career is to work hard and never be afraid of stepping outside your comfort zone. Always give your personal best and embrace every opportunity.