Former Gaelic footballer hails mentality as ‘key characteristic’ for achieving success in business.
Ronan O’Connor is a successful business consultant and entrepreneur who found his passion for the direct sales and marketing industry after bouncing back from the chaos caused by the 2008 recession – a feat he claims wouldn’t have been possible had he been weak of mind.
The entrepreneur makes a point of passing on the lessons he learned from this experience during his mentoring engagements with young people around the world who have realised traditional career paths are not for them. It is during these keynote speeches and seminars that O’Connor talks up the importance of mental strength, and learning to weather the storms that sink many small enterprises during their formative years.
Indeed, O’Connor himself lost two businesses when the financial crisis of 2007-2008 hit Ireland, and within a year and a half, everything he had worked for had been wiped out. Looking back at that time, the consultant credits the event for rebuilding how he now approaches obstacles in business today;
“I think I’m better for it – it was a harsh lesson, but maybe one that was needed to awaken my true passion. Losing everything I had worked so hard for in such a short period was devastating, but I learnt a lot about myself, though, in how I responded to it. I think it was during this time I started to understand what it meant to have a strong mentality, so to speak,” he stated.
Before becoming a top performer in the ‘recession proof’ direct sales and marketing industry, Mr O’Connor’s career had been centred around engineering, construction and banking. Unsure if having a balanced CV stood him in good stead for being able to ‘bounce back’ so well, O’Connor seemed far more committed to the idea of his sports background playing a role.
O’Connor, who has represented his home county of Kerry at all age groups of Gaelic football, believes people create their own success in life. This can be seen in his claims that more often than not the catalyst for such ‘success’ comes down to mental resilience and discipline – not ability. Such a characteristic is often said to be found in sporty individuals, and the entrepreneur confesses to favouring this sort of experience on a CV when he finds himself in recruiting situations.
“One of my favourite quotes is remembering that when everything seems to be going against you – planes take off against the wind, not with it. There’s no point wallowing in mistakes, and I think athletes and sports-minded individuals understand this more than most. They’re brilliant at proactively thinking about doing better the next time an opportunity comes around,” stated Ronan O’Connor.
The business consultant has now been involved in recruiting and training sales teams for multinational companies for the last ten years, from his base in Sydney, Australia.
While there might be an abundance of characteristics needed for achieving success in business, a clear that case for mental strength has been laid down by O’Connor – with strong assertions that sporty individuals have a sizeable head start.