60 seconds with: Lisa-Nicole Dunne

Interviews | Tue 13 Jun | Author – Business & Finance 60 seconds with: Lisa-Nicole Dunne

CEO of CMRF Crumlin, Lisa-Nicole Dunne, tackles our 60-second interview questions.


Q. What was your first job? 

My first full time job was in Irish Permanent pre-merger with TSB and Irish Life. It was a great experience learning a lot about the power of data insights and business retention, which still stand to me today.

Q. What would you regard as your greatest achievement to date?

I love getting the best out of people and my best achievement has been helping wonderful teams raise in excess of €50m for great causes.

At CMRF Crumlin we are funding initiatives and research that offer hope and progress for children’s health, which is incredibly rewarding.

Q. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

Probably that perfection is the enemy of progress.

I have high standards – everyone who works with me knows that. I set them and aim for them myself and expect them from others, but I have learned with experience that sometimes good is good enough and much better than something delivered brilliantly but long after it was needed.

Q. If you could step into the shoes of one business person for a day, who would it be and why?

I think it would have to be Warren Buffet. He is so commercial and successful, yet, also such an inspirational philanthropist.

I love that he is about value investing and combines that with his dedication to working on charitable giving and his work on The Giving Pledge. He gets to make an impact at scale, imagine what could be achieved in one day.

Q. In three words or less, how would you define success?

Impact, balance, passion.

Q. What’s your motto?

What’s for you won’t go by you.

I firmly believe that there is no point stressing about these things because if it is right, it will be.

My mum always instilled that in me and it can be helpful to remember that whether acting as chief worrier at home or in the office.

Q. How do you motivate yourself and your staff?

We keep focused on the lives we are helping to change.

We’re supporting small victories every day for children who live with life-limiting illnesses, and helping them have hope through research via the National Children’s Research Centre (NCRC) and wonderful support through enabling initiatives in Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital.

We are in a very privileged position where we don’t have to look too far for the inspiration to do what we do.

To keep the team motivated, we engage with the parents who see the difference, we share cards from donors, we try to share stories about impact on children’s lives, and hear from the wonderful doctors and researchers that are helping save and improve lives.

Q. How do you relax?

Time out with a good book, a good drama and my favourite is I love to lie on my children’s trampoline with them jumping all over me!

Q. What are your aspirations for the future of your business?

At the core of who we are is the desire to enable the greatest impact for sick children, in their experience when they are sick, with better outcomes so they get better and home more quickly and in enabling a better quality of life for all children.

Our key goals and aspirations for the future are threefold:

  • Today: We want the public and our incredible supporters to keep supporting the vital needs of Crumlin Children’s Hospital now, because the 800,000+ children who will come to Crumlin before the new hospital opens deserve the best of everything, and shouldn’t have to wait.
  • Tomorrow: Our other aspiration is encouraging people to help us deliver a step-change in investment in paediatric research so that children can benefit from the hope that research offers now and into the future.
  • Forever: That more people support us and continue to trust us to help make a vital contribution to sick children wherever they are being treated.

I have high standards – everyone who works with me knows that. I set them and aim for them myself and expect them from others