DECEMBER GUEST BLOGGER – ROSANNE REILLY
We are delighted to have Rosanne Reilly as our Guest Blogger for December. Rosanne has had a fascinating career to date which she goes into detail on below. She will also be speaking at our 2015 Forum – have a look at the updated flyer here – and don’t forget the Early Bird rate is available until March 30th 2015!
WHAT’S YOUR STORY???…… My name is Rosanne Reilly, I have been a Global Office Manager and Personal Assistant in the corporate and private world for over 15 years. I’ve worked for celebrities, ultra high net worth individuals, small companies, large companies, national, international, global corporations, private individuals and families. I’ve had so many ups and downs over the years it’s been a real roller coaster experience and it’s not over yet. I’ve been promoted, let go, made redundant, and thought people and companies could not live without me, but I learned the hard way that they could, and life moves on very quickly.
I’ve had about thirty five different jobs to date from cleaning airplanes, promoting a micro-brewery to working in a call centre and many others. I’ve had my own company which failed, tried and then I tried again and luckily things seem to be going better this time around, and I continue to try and live the dream of having my own successful Concierge Personal Assistance business in Ireland someday. I have learned some valuable lessons including that sometimes it’s ok to give up and walk away from something that no longer serves you – to follow a new path and sometimes you should just take a break and keep trying, and know that there’s nothing wrong with changing your plans.
I’ve been put on a pedestal, lead, followed, failed, succeeded, made mistakes, built a career, moved and changed over the years, some people love me and think I’m the best office manager ever, some people hate me and think I’m the worst office manager ever. People will love you and people will hate you and none of it will have anything to do with you at all. It’s none of your business what other people think of you – it’s only important how you feel about yourself that counts. Never be afraid to seize an opportunity or let anything hold you back. Everything will be ok in the end and if it’s not ok, it’s not the end. I’ve worked with some amazing people and some not so nice people. I’m not great with complicated maths or budgets but I am great at information gathering and I’m great with people, I have no idea how I have managed to do so well in life so far but it probably has something to do with my strong work ethic and my resolution to never ever give up trying my best. Everyone has talents they just need to bring them to the forefront, and my advice would be: don’t be afraid just because you think one aspect of a task may be challenging – you can do it! Believe in yourself and show up; putting your best effort in makes all the difference. I hated school and was never very good at it but somehow I ended up with a great job and for the most part doing a great job. I get stressed, overwhelmed, and find it hard to manage a work life balance. I’m trying to do a Masters but sometimes feel too tired to get any work done. I have really let relationships suffer because of work. I’ve been burnt out, put on weight, lost weight, put it on again, and I have a mixture of very high self-confidence & no self-confidence at all. I don’t like to read or speak in public, I’m terrible at grammar, I can’t spell – thank goodness for spellcheck and calculators or I’d be lost! I am great at IT issues & winging things and making the impossible happen on a daily basis. Where there’s a will there’s always a way. There is nothing in this world that is impossible and if you believe that, then anything is possible. People around the world are doing impossible things on a daily basis and if they can do it – you can do it. I totally believe in myself some days and not others – some of my bosses love me and think I’m a genius, some of my bosses hate me and think I’m a total idiot. You can’t please everyone. I need to learn the word NO! But after many training courses on assertiveness I still find it hard. I did pick up a good phrase recently that seems to work quite well “What is the need right now?” – seems to work so far anyway. Along the way I have become a people manager which was unexpected, and I’m learning something new about people each day. It’s not easy, people are complex and every person is so different but people are the most important asset in any company. I do my best for my team every day, I really try to support people in their daily work, I think it’s so important to thank people for all their hard work frequently and try to keep them motivated. I think it’s imperative to have humility and try to see things from other peoples point of view. You end up managing people of all ages and I think it’s important to try and always show respect to people of any age or level regardless of your position. As long as the good times outweigh the bad, I think you’re doing well and it’s important to get constructive feedback often on how you can do better. I try extremely hard to be a great people manager and I hope one day I can tell myself that I am. A good term I learned recently at training is “we are all equal in humanity but not in responsibility” – I like that one. You should always play the role of the encourager – the world has enough critics already. I think I’m a workaholic which I definitely get from my dad, I get my determination from my mother. I work to live & live to work which is not a good thing, there is much more to life than work and there has to be a balance, I really need to work on this. It’s my new year’s resolution for 2015. I’m beginning to think work life balance is a myth but I’ll keep working on finding balance and I’ll let you know if I find the secret to balancing it! My family, friends and fiancé are often left waiting on me to finish work – I really need to start prioritising them ahead of work, work doesn’t love you back like they do.
I’m not exactly sure how I ended up where I am today but I’m really enjoying my current role working as a Personal Assistant / Office Manager / Events Coordinator for a large global organisation. I think it might have been a mix of not knowing what I wanted to do with my life, getting a random reception job in a hotel and really liking that job. I got a lucky break too and went to work in an IT training company and as part of my package, I could do all the training courses for free. So I did them all.
I believe education and travel are the only thing you can spend money on that actually make you a richer person. After that I wanted to earn more money and decided I liked the idea of being a Personal Assistant. I thought it looked like a pretty cool job, with good money and access to lots of different opportunities and it just kind of evolved from there. I worked in Property, Construction and then I decided I wanted to be a Private Personal Assistant and jetted off to the Caribbean. It’s difficult living away from home and family, so I ended up coming back home to Ireland but it was amazing to cruise around the Caribbean and visit private islands and be involved in all the amazing activities that the UHNWI liked to do on a daily basis. Almost straight away when I returned home, I got the opportunity to work as a live-in Private Personal Assistant with a HNWI based in Mullingar in a private estate hide away with helicopters, race horses and private jets. I met friends from all over the world that I will have forever and had some amazing experiences.
I have dealt with some of the world’s most influential private and corporate professionals and I’ve learned that having lots of money is amazing but it can’t buy you love, health or happiness. Great wealth comes with its own set of responsibilities. Some people definitely manage it better than others. I have also learned that things are great on the way up but can very hard on the way back down.
One former boss in the construction and world rallycross areas advised me that it’s very difficult to make your first million, but after that it becomes much easier to increase your wealth and that you can only sleep in one bed, wear one suit, be in one house or drive one car at the one time and once you’ve purchased all that stuff, it becomes harder to spend your money. A lot of things come free to those that can afford them.
I had a lot of other weird and wonderful jobs in between such as working for lords, dukes, government officials and people in the music and television industry through my private concierge company and other concierge contracts. I am now working as an office manager in a global pharmaceutical centre of excellence which is fantastic – the people are great and it’s a really positive and wonderful place to work. I have a lot of different responsibilities so it’s a really interesting role.
Your dreams don’t have an expiry date, its ok to stop, take stock and keep striving towards what you want in life. We must always be aware that we have the ultimate power to define who we are, our past does not determine our future so don’t be afraid to go after what you want in life. Aim for the stars and don’t set the bar too low. Make a conscious effort to surround yourself with positive and encouraging people.
Try to stay motivated by having a dream and loving your goal and have passion and enthusiasm for it. Have a plan, follow it and never give up.
Real life is often stranger than fiction and I wouldn’t change any of it for the world… You still have a few days to finish your book for 2014 – make it a good chapter.
I know all the ways not to do things 😉 So if anyone ever needs any advice, I’m here to help! My story is not finished yet and I have lots more failures and successes to come, so watch this space….
Now…What’s Your Story???