60 seconds with: Ronan Gourley

Business, Interviews | Tue 19 Jul | Author – Business & Finance
Ronan Gurley

Ronan Gourley, Sales Manager for total coffee solution provider UCC Coffee, takes the Business & Finance 60-second interview.

Q. What was your first job?

I was brought up on a farm, so I was never afraid of getting my hands dirty with a bit of hard work.

My first paid job was a pot washer at a hotel while I was at university. That was hard work – but it was worth it to get that paycheck at the end of the week.

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

It would have to be my three young kids – any bit of time I get to spend with them is very precious.

At work, every single day is a chance to make a difference. And you get out what you put in. We’ve doubled UCC Coffee equipment base in the Irish market. That’s the kind of result that makes me fly out of bed every morning.

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

It’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

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

I have huge admiration for Richard Branson. He wasn’t afraid to take on the big brands, or put his personal reputation on the line. And he seems to have had a lot of fun along the way too!

Q. How do you motivate yourself and your staff?

I always set clear goals so my team knows what success looks like. Every member of the team knows how he or she can contribute. So when we taste success, we celebrate it together.

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

Satisfaction through work.

Q. How do you relax?

I don’t do a lot of that! My leisure time is mostly family time. But once a week I do play 8-a-side football – it’s the one hour in the week I can completely switch off.

Q. What’s your motto?

Live in the present. It’s too easy to dwell on mistakes, or get ahead of yourself in life. Live in the moment and the results will follow.

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

I’m really excited about our plans. Our goal is to make UCC Coffee the first stop for a total coffee solution for the whole hospitality industry in Ireland, and my team have a big part to play in achieving that.

And along the way, I’m still honing my skills to make that perfect cup of coffee!

Every member of the team knows how he or she can contribute. So when we taste success, we celebrate it together


Ronan Gourley is National Sales Manager in Ireland for the market-leading total coffee solution provider, UCC Coffee UK & Ireland.

His 15+ years’ experience in sales and account management in the food, FMCG and sportswear industries includes stints at major sportswear brand, Nike; confectionary giant, Cadbury; and Northern Irish independent healthy snack producer, Kestrel Foods.

Joining UCC Coffee UK & Ireland in 2015, Gourley has responsibility for the sales teams and strategic accounts.