EY team gears-up to support National Council for the Blind of Ireland
At 8pm on a Friday evening you might expect, as a 20-something Scot living in Dublin, Ireland, I would be enjoying one of the countless social activities in this vibrant capital. Alas, a group of EY colleagues and I are lined up in Dalkey, Co. Dublin, at the start line of an 80km charity cycle that will bring us into the early hours of our Saturday morning. “What madness brought me here!”
Life is a journey they say, and since joining EY after my undergraduate degree in 2015, I’ve never looked back. There are so many opportunities for personal and professional development within EY, there is simply no time to look back – and no need.
You might be inclined to imagine working for one of the Big 4 as long days in the office, excel sheet after excel sheet, meeting after meeting, etc. However, there is so much more than that. Long gone are the days where working in a large organisation only meant completing your 9-5 activities.
Within EY, there is a clear recognition of the fact that being a big company comes with responsibility to our local and global environment, our Corporate Social Responsibility. In fact, our very own Mark Weinberger (EY Global Chairman and CEO) says, “Business has a pivotal role in solving society’s issues. Through these areas, and our commitment to support and advance sustainable business principles in everything we do, EY will continue to play its part.”*
EY encourages broadening perspectives within our firm, and strongly believes in directly positively impacting our external environment with our skill sets and our resources. Committees promoting these beliefs include, amongst many others, an Ability Network, a Sports and Societies Committee and a CSR Committee. There is also an Advisory D&I committee (Diversity and Inclusiveness), of which I am a member, and it is from this platform I was able to promote the NCBI event by using our internal communications to enlist our intrepid team of cyclists. EY positively encourages involvement in such charitable activities, and has a wide range of CSR activities throughout the year also.
During the cycle, whilst concentrating on surviving the many hills and questioning my sanity for arranging this, I was able to contemplate how fortunate our team were to participate and the good fortune we have in our sight. In hindsight, I can say the event was thoroughly worthwhile, and not unlike the stages of a client engagement as follows:-
Stage 1: Planning and Preparation
Like any client engagement, the planning and preparation was key to our success. Not least in enrolling capable and willing participants for our team. Proper attire and cycle equipment were important, and the logistics of our team being at the start line together, ready and prepared was no mean feat; not to mention fitting my own cycle into a taxi from the city centre to Dalkey – that was an interesting conversation with the driver! My correspondence with NCBI (the Client) in advance helped plan properly for such things as hydration and calorie/energy intake for the 80km ahead, and that we were prepared to deliver the task required.
Stage 2: (0 to 20km) the initial client engagement
Team-EY were fired-up and ready for action. We had planned and were prepared to deliver, and our pre-engagement excitement was palpable. Once the cycle started we needed to gauge the required pace, and adapt along the way; something we do on a daily basis to obtain the best results for our clients.
Stage 3: (21km to 40km) the “hard work” stage
This is where our highest energy levels were necessary. We were fully engaged and this was crucial to pass the challenge that was Howth Hill.
Just like our clients expect on every engagement, we needed to apply all of our skill and determination to succeed and deliver the expected results.
Stage 4: (41km to 60km) the adaptability stage
This was a difficult stage also, as we negotiated difficult peaks and overcame troughs. Like client engagements, we had to apply a different style and different skills for each of these, and we adjusted our planning and kept our energy levels high.
The Closing stage: (61km to 80km)
The Closing stage was in some ways the easiest, as our confidence was high, and we anticipated our feeling of achievement at the end. Our knowledge of the funds we would raise for such a worthy cause was a strong driving force also. Similar to successfully completing any client contract and delivering on time and with typical EY high quality.
I hope you enjoyed reading this blog; and be prepared to join me next year, whether in EY or in EY AND as part of our cycling team! Both will be full of surprises and challenges, but these things are worth it when the end result is success.