Feargal Quinn: Former Politician and Businessman

Posted on Jul 12, 2017

Feargal Quinn: Former Politician and Businessman

Feargal Quinn, founder of the Superquinn supermarket chain, thinks business leadership should be fun.

“The overall approach is make sure that you enjoy the day”, he says, stressing that to achieve this “you have to make sure that the people who work with you enjoy the day and to do that you have to make sure the customers enjoy the day.”

Click Here To Download

Growing up at the family owned Red Island holiday camp in Skerries, Co Dublin gave him a great understanding of customer needs.

When he opened his first supermarket in Dundalk at the age of 23 it was “immediately a success mainly because I was putting entertainment into it. It wasn’t just food”. His tannoy music system and weekly competitions for customers were quickly followed with innovations like salad bars, loyalty cards and food traceability – all unheard of in Irish shops at the time.

The former member of the Seanad, former chairman of An Post and former advisor to the Minister for Education on the Leaving Cert Applied, says business should be run on the “boomerang principle”.
Everything in the business is aimed at getting the customer to come back again.

Feargal Quinn thinks it’s very important to be the face of your business which is why he spent a lot of time on the shop floor interacting with both staff and customers. “I just enjoyed it. It’s just so useful and it’s great fun.”

In politics he is proudest of the Construction Contracts Act, recently passed, which ensures that sub-contractors get paid.

He says he is not a spender “No I’m a saver. We bought our house 41 years ago and we haven’t moved and we tend not to take holidays we just love where we live.”

The grandfather of 18 has coped with the stresses of a very busy career by relying on his wife of 41 years, Denise, and his family. “Being happy at home is important.” He met Denise in Red Island when she was just 16 and he was 20 and they married five years later and the couple have five grown up children.

He says he would like people to think that I left the world a better place than I came to it and that I left it with a smile.”

Pin It on Pinterest