Global Gain

When it comes to being deserving of a job title, Duke McCaffrey Consulting’s new director of global business development for the data centre sector has certainly put in the hard miles.

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Halloween – Trick or Treat! 👻

How much do you know about the festival of Halloween? Test your knowledge this Sunday with Duke McCaffrey’s Trick or Treat fun quiz! 

Halloween’s origins go back to an ancient Celtic festival and is now a tradition for many nations across the world – in fact around 23 countries! But so many things about this festival are yet unknown.

Halloween has been a tradition in Ireland for over 2000 years and we thought it would be fun to get families and friends to take part throughout the day! 

From myths to legends, origins and traditions – this Halloween team up with your friends and family and join in with our spooky Halloween quiz. Tune in at the below times on our Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts to follow along with our quiz! 

Schedule of Times

Question 18.30amAnswer 12pm
Question 29.30amAnswer 23pm
Question 310.30amAnswer 34pm
Question 411.30amAnswer 45pm
Question 512.30amAnswer 56pm

Answers provided on the afternoon of the 31st November. Respond to the questions in the comments on the post.

Good luck!

#TakeFive – An interview with Ronan McGee, Director, Duke McCaffrey

Ronan, what have been the main challenges for you as a director of one of the fastest growing cost and project management consultancy’s in Ireland?

It is going to be no surprise to anyone reading this blog that one of the main challenges was simply adapting to a completely new way of working and collaborating. Back in March 2020, who would have thought that the pandemic would take the best part of 18 months to get back to what we are now calling the new normal.

Until the pandemic hit, our staff had spent their careers working between the office and construction site but, for what was an unknown period of time, we would be doing everything from home!

Pre-covid, mentoring and briefing teams could be difficult due to workload and project meetings but at least we were able to discuss sensitive issues face to face. For us, our number one priority was to find a way of mentoring and supporting our people via virtual means. We invested significantly in upgrading our IT and software to allow us to adapt quickly to the remote setup, while also future-proofing the business.

Weekly meetings were an absolute must for the team. Like many businesses, every Monday we would plan out the weekly tasks over Teams but within a couple of weeks we found the meetings became more and more invaluable in just catching up and chewing the cud. This was great for the graduates and young professionals, as not only were they contending with a new career and working on their own at home, but they also needed to have a platform where they could listen to challenges and how they were being resolved – teamwork makes the dream work as the say!

The firm was expanding quickly, how did these new challenges affect your ability to recruit?

This was a challenge. The business was growing fast, and we needed experienced and talented professionals. Looking for senior people during a pandemic was not easy. We went through recruitment consultants and our own networks. We found two fantastic team members through our own contacts.  But even then, the challenge was in trying to understand each other’s commitment through a virtual environment!

I know many a business leader will tell you, recruiting people through Teams/Zoom is terribly difficult. The non-verbal clues are just not there. Your potential new recruit also has to trust what you were saying to take that leap of faith. For example, ‘why would they leave their existing global practice to join a smaller firm?’. I really think our reputation and our commitment to our brand culture played a significant role in helping them make a decision.

During the pandemic lockdown, how did your team cope with the increased strain to mental health and wellbeing?

We were very conscious that this was a particularly hard time, especially for graduates who rely on senior staff to guide them. One of the main things we did was to ensure every member of staff had a part to play on our Teams calls and that they had a director they could call on any time of day. We also held some online social events for staff to communicate in a non-working environment as well as recently completing a Giggle Fund event for Children’s Health Foundation Crumlin where we all took on completing 100km walk, run or cycle.

Helping our professionals feel part of the family and part of the team – made a big difference.

Throughout this challenging period, was there anything you learnt that you will take forward?

Back in March 2020, there were a lot of nervous conversations around the board table – after all there was so much uncertainty. Will we make it? Will what we have built as a business, fail?

What we actually found is that humans have great resolve and when tested can make things happen. Duke McCaffrey experienced significant growth and the wonderful thing was that this was mainly based on our past relationships – our hands-on hard work over the years really did prove its worth. During Covid, we have won a lot of repeat business as our clients really appreciated the time and effort we put into their projects and the service we gave them when times were uncertain and tough.

For example, working through the pandemic in the early days where nobody knew what was going on, we were regularly responding to calls where clients were asking ‘What does site closure mean for me?’, ‘What happens to my contract and my obligations?’, ‘How much are the site delays going to cost us?’. Frightening times for many developers, contractors and suppliers. I think by working through a pandemic in a collaborative way, it has resulted in stronger relationships with our clients and now we are all coming out the other side (hopefully!)

How would your team describe your style of leadership?

I’d really like to think that my team and my clients say that I’m always available and accessible. From a personal perspective, I believe I am fairly easy to get on with, not confrontational and try to see the positive in things! I don’t like the aggressive approach to business – there’s always a way to solve a problem by being constructive rather than destructive and maintaining relationships with fellow professionals and clients is key to success.

History Lesson

As the data centre sector comes of age, Joe McCaffrey – a mechanical and electrical specialist at construction consultants Duke McCaffrey – explores how lessons from the past can promote a prosperous future…

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Appointed to Elanora Court – a new home development in Dublin!

We are delighted to have been appointed to Jackie Greene Construction’s new home development at Elanora Court.

Elanora Court is a Residential Development at Long Mile Road in Dublin. Just under 1ha, the new development will create 153 new homes consisting of 1, 2 and 3 bed apartments and duplex units.

A fabulous contractor and client which prides itself on quality in delivery. The development is another step in the right direction for Dublin’s housing model!

Announcement of New Senior Management Team Appointments at Duke McCaffrey.

In recent months, with all the challenges facing our people and economy, we used the time wisely and we took the opportunity to reshape our team to build a business that goes beyond COVID-19 – providing for a long and successful future.  

We are exceptionally pleased with the recent appointments including Ronan McGee appointed as Director of Cost Management, Mark Kirwan as Associate Director of Cost Management, Ian Kelleher appointed as Associate Director of Project Management and Beatriz Moreira as Business Finance Manager.

We also made some management structure changes to develop the business as we enter another period of growth, including Joseph McCaffrey, who has now stepped up as Managing Director, Kevin Duke as Consultant and Rebecca Coffey as Bid and Marketing Manager. 

We warmly congratulate all the newly promoted team and we are firmly believe we have one of the strongest construction consultancy businesses in the Irish market – an independent, flexible and focussed firm.