From call centre agent to Google’s head honcho in Ireland

Posted on Oct 13, 2017

Fionnuala Meehan had “no clear career path” after her arts degree. So she took a job in a call centre where she was regularly pranked by German teenagers. She had her first child while still working in the call centre, then later moving on to work for internet giant AOL. Next stop was Google, where she now manages 650 staff as head of Irish operations, while also raising three children.

How does she do it? She’s on the 5.30pm train home, she gets 8 hours sleep a night and she coaches, instead of “manages”, her team. Fionnuala reveals her simple tools for resilience, how to understand millennials in order to get the best out of them and the home life set-up that allows her to work at such a high level. The tech boss also talks switching-off and if it’s true what they say about Google – are the beanbags and free food just a ploy to get employees to work longer hours?


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