The theme for WMB’s 15th annual Conference & Awards is ‘What is your why?’.
“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain.
When choosing our conference theme, here at WMB we tend to get inspiration from what is happening around us – in business, in the economy and in the news. Recent years have enabled all of us to take a good look at what is really important to us. It has been a time of reflection and acknowledgement – an opportunity to reassess and even reignite with our inner gurus.
So what inspires you? What makes you want to jump out of bed each day? Have you ever noticed how confident people tend to be more successful? They walk with a sense of purpose; with a pep in their step. My guess is that these people know exactly where they are going – they are clear on their ‘why’.
“When why is clear, the how is easy.” Anon
These days a company’s ethos is so important especially when attracting and retaining talent. From my own perspective, those companies which lead by example inspire me the most. One such company is Microsoft Ireland. Fourteen years ago, Cathriona Hallahan lifted the WMB Businesswoman Award. She was in the minority back then as head of a tech company and her passion for positive change was palpable. Fast forward to later this year, when her successor Anne Sheehan, Country Manager of Microsoft Ireland, will be in conversation with Helen Shaw on the WMB stage. Whilst Anne is in the minority as a female leader in technology – she is, without doubt, a super role model.
And that is our ‘why’ here at WMB – to promote role models and continue to put a spotlight on diversity, equity and inclusion.
Another great role model who is participating in our ViewPoint Panel is Deirdre O’Neill, Managing Director of Compass Ireland. Deirdre is a WMB Diversity Ambassador. She gets out of bed in the morning “really looking forward to what I do, and to producing results that make a difference in people’s lives.” She is proud of how Compass Ireland “champions sustainability, waste management and locally sourced produce”.
Deirdre will be joined on the Panel by Sharon Walsh, SVP Technology at Fidelity Investments, who is also a WMB Diversity Ambassador and will share her perspective on our theme. In a recent interview with WMB, Sharon said: “I get the most enjoyment and fulfilment from helping people grow and achieve. I pride myself on being people-centred in everything I do. From coaching, motivating, supporting career development and life-long learning, I try to give people my time as much as my guidance.”
So whether your purpose is to lead by example, be a voice for a minority, share your knowledge, champion sustainability or you simply want to leave a positive message in your wake, we invite you all to reflect with us at this year’s Conference on ‘What is your why’?
“You see things; and you say ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say ‘Why Not?’” George Bernard Shaw