Stephen Sheehan is the Director of Pershing, a subsidiary of BNY Mellon. Pershing is a global financial solutions firm that aims to help companies succeed by providing them with resources and solutions.
What was your first job?
My very first was in McCloskeys pub in Donnybrook where I used to work nights and soon learned how to handle the more ‘challenging’ customers as the evening wore on.
I met and served some really great characters back then but distinctly remember the attention to detail and pride the manager had in his pub.
What pushed you to pursue a career in this field?
The IFSC was starting to take off when I finished university and I wanted to work for a business with an international focus having completed a commerce degree.
I got a placement with Citibank and it was a brilliant experience. After moving a number of times internally, I settled on a client relationship role. I’ve always enjoyed helping clients grow and strategise, and that continues to serve me well here at BNY Mellon | Pershing.
What would you regard as your greatest achievement to date?
My wife Elizabeth and I are lucky to have three fabulous sons aged 16, 14 and 11. Whilst it’s not all plain sailing, seeing them grow and develop is something to behold. We keep the cupboards well-stocked at home for our three sporty fellas, yet they will still complain that there is no food in the house!
Career wise, would you do anything differently?
I would have moved more frequently, particularly in the early years. It’s hard to beat the practical experience you get from working with different firms, cultures, and personalities.
I would recommend additional education and training throughout a career, it can definitely open new business avenues and well as new networking opportunities.
In one sentence, how would you define success?
For me its two-pronged: continual personal growth to leave a positive impact on those around me, and successfully providing clients with a platform to grow through the solutions and services that we provide to them.
I met a client last week who talked about their aptitude for growth and take satisfaction that Pershing helped them get there.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
I worked with a professional coach some years ago who taught me the value of taking the time to reflect and review how things have gone, but also importantly to consider how they could be improved.
Life can be full of ups and downs and it’s important to have a level of awareness and to take actions when needed.
How do you motivate yourself and your staff?
I work for a market leading financial institution — we are a MiFID investment firm and need to maintain high standards. Our objective is to continue delivering world class clearing, settlement, custody and client asset solutions and my job is to ensure our team is motivated and excited to be part of that journey.
How do you handle adversity?
I will usually take a moment to think about the issue and consider a few scenarios before discussing it honestly and openly. I try not to delay too long and as a result typically find people reasonable and forthcoming.
How do you relax?
I love to have lunch with family and friends, eat good food and drink nice wine — and a great laugh is absolutely essential. I also love playing links golf courses and will play at any time of the year rain, hail or shine!
What are your aspirations for the future of the business?
Pershing has been in Ireland for almost 20 years now and during that time has evolved to become a market-leading provider of investment services.
The past three to four years have strengthened our position locally but now we want to expand that growth trajectory across Europe, where Pershing is licenced to provide solutions to wealth managers, private banks, platforms and institutional broker dealers. The opportunity is huge.