“If you better understand the person, you better understand the problem” – 60 Seconds with Joanne McEnteggart, IQ-EQ Ireland

60 Seconds With, Business | Tue 13 Aug | Author – Business & Finance
Joanne McEnteggart

Joanne McEnteggart, Managing Director of IQ-EQ Ireland, takes the Business & Finance 60-second interview.

 Q. What was your first job? 

I joined Irish Life after graduating and worked as a trainee accountant in their group internal audit division. I was involved in running audits of Irish Life investment managers, which gave me early insight into the intricacies of investment management and the financial services world.

It also proved to be a fantastic way of seeing all parts of the business and learning how it operated, thus providing a head start into governance and how things should be run. I additionally got to work on audits within our US subsidiaries, so it was a fantastic first job.

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

In life, my biggest achievement has been my two boys, Jack and Billy, who are totally fantastic! I also recently completed a 50-mile walk with my Leaving Certificate class in honour of our deceased classmates. That was the hardest thing I have ever done!

In work, I am always proud when my staff and clients are happy. That might not technically count as a “greatest achievement”, but it’s what I find most rewarding on an ongoing basis. Here at IQ-EQ we are very much focused on understanding both our people and our clients; making sure we listen to and respond to them.

We have really tried to ensure that our staff are motivated and satisfied in their jobs, and that we’re providing a work environment everyone can be proud of and enjoy coming to each morning – because if our people are happy, then our clients will be too!

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

Fulfilment, happiness, balance.

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

“Don’t be afraid to ask questions.” I probably ask too many, but it allows me understand people, learn more about them – what drives them, what makes them tick and what they may need.

If you better understand the person then you better understand the problem and how you may be able to solve it with them.

Q. How do you motivate yourself and your staff?

The senior team and I spend a considerable amount of time looking at how we can keep making things better or easier for our people. One way that is working for us is handing the power back to our people through our ‘town hall’ meetings, where the leadership team and I share the successes of the last quarter and open the floor to questions.

We also recently ran an internal competition where interdisciplinary teams were asked what changes they would make if they were running the business. Not only did it display exceptional teamwork and impressive business acumen, but also offered a number of forward-thinking initiatives that we’ve since actioned across our Irish offices.

We like to have fun together outside of the office too. Earlier this year a group of us competed as a team in the Great Limerick Run, as part of the Fittest Company Challenge. It was no small feat, having to take on a half marathon and six-mile run in one day. Not only did we make it to the finish line, but we grabbed second place in our category!

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

I recently heard Dómhnal Slattery speak at an Irish International Business Network event and was blown away by Avolon’s history in terms of its funding, ownership and growth.

At IQ-EQ we work with a lot of aviation leasing companies when they choose Ireland for their leasing platforms or structures, so I love listening to the key figures in this space. I am motivated by their successes and also by how they have learnt from failure.

Q. How do you relax?

I run. I have entered the Dublin City Marathon this year and am pounding the roads in preparation for it. Running gives me some head space and allows me to work through things; I usually have the solution by the time I am finished. It’s even better if I am joined by my hubby and boys, meaning we can catch up on how their day has been as well.

Q. What’s your motto?

My motto is one of the classics: ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.’ In all of my dealings, I always try to look at it from the other side and ask myself how would I feel or react if someone was engaging with me in this way.

Growing up in a family of entrepreneurs, from my grandmother to my father, I learned a lot at a very young age about how to communicate and the importance of understanding what makes people tick. My family really emphasised the importance of treating others how you would like to be treated. I believe this builds trust in my relationships with colleagues and clients alike.

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

Following our global rebrand in March, we have some really exciting and ambitious plans for growth in Ireland. We’re looking to expand our service offering here and continue building on our strengthening global presence, with the goal of positioning IQ-EQ as the first choice when a selecting a corporate services provider in Ireland. I am very excited by our ambition, but as we grow my focus is also on making sure we remain true to our core values, stay agile and keep exceeding our clients’ expectations.

If you better understand the person then you better understand the problem and how you may be able to solve it with them.

Joanne McEnteggart

Joanne McEnteggart