Interview Series - Kathy McDermott

Oct 30, 2020

At DCU I studied Accounting and Finance following by an MBS and in 2008 I joined the CHEC tax department in KPMG. After 3 great years working in tax compliance & advisory, I was keen to travel and see the world. In November 2011 I travelled through SE Asia and then spent 2 years living and working in Melbourne. I worked as a Management Accountant for Delaware North, a food and beverage service company. I am a big sports fan, so I really enjoyed working on site at one of their stadiums.

In 2014, following 2 months exploring Central America I came home to Ireland and joined Dixons Carphone as a Finance Manager. Since then, I have progressed through a number of roles with DC and my in current role is Head of Finance I work across the UK & Ireland businesses.

  1. Tell us a little bit about your current company in three sentences or less

Dixons Carphone plc is a multinational retailer of consumer electronics & mobiles. The group operates throughout UK & Ireland, the Nordics and Greece. In Ireland, the group’s trading brands include Currys PC World, Dixons Travel and Carphone Warehouse.

  1. What is the toughest decision you have had to make in your career to date?

I have long believed that the team you build around you is key to your success and so any decisions that impact people are always challenging. Sometimes, difficult decisions are required for the benefit of both the business and team.

  1. What the best piece of career advice you have been given (or would give)?

Early in my career my manager told me; ‘never underestimate the power of your resilience’. It’s a statement has stuck with me particularly during challenging and difficult periods in work and in life. Knowing that I am resilient helps me to gain perspective on a situation and I think that has helped my progress through my career to date.

  1. Who do you admire most and why?

I am a big admirer of Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand Prime Minister. Not only has she shown herself to be a great leader during challenging times, but her overall empathic approach to many situations is something to be admired.

  1. Tell us something people might not know about you

Food and cooking are a passion and I really enjoy entertaining family and friends…and I am told I am a pretty good cook!

I also really enjoy travelling and experiencing new cultures. I have been lucky enough to travel to many parts of the world, most recently to Japan taking in the Rugby World Cup…another big interest of mine.

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