Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Elaine McGarrigle from CRH plc to give some advice for people considering this job:

 

Elaine McGarrigle

Mechanical Engineer

CRH plc

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  Elaine McGarrigle

The most important skill that a person in my position can have is communication.

One needs to be able to communicate effectively with people of all levels in order to do a days work. I think that this is the most important quality, to be able to fit in well with people, everyone from the operators to the senior management, one needs to be able to read them and how best to communicate with them.

An interest in basic engineering and in the heavy machine industry.

It is important to realise that working as a mechanical engineer in Irish Cement does not generally involve sitting at your desk all day. It involves alot of hands on, on-site work so a person needs to be prepared to get their hands dirty.

Another quality that is important is to be willing to learn. Even after a number of years in college, one needs to be eager to learn the ins and outs of a new environment; how cement is made, what equipment is involved, what generally goes wrong and how it is fixed.

Everyone will help and teach you but you need to open your mind and be prepared to take it all in.

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Linguistic?
Linguistic 
The Linguistic's interests are usually focused on ideas and information exchange. They tend to like reading a lot, and enjoy discussion about what has been said. Some will want to write about their own ideas and may follow a path towards journalism, or story writing or editing. Others will develop skills in other languages, perhaps finding work as a translator or interpreter. Most Linguistic types will enjoy the opportunity to teach or instruct people in a topic they are interested in.
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Back to Work - Self Employed


Back to Work Enterprise Allowance (Self-Employed)

The Back to Work Enterprise Allowance (BTWEA) scheme encourages people getting certain social welfare payments to become self-employed.

If you take part in the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance scheme you may be able to keep a percentage of your social welfare payment for up to 2 years.

The scheme is often referred to as the Short-Term Enterprise Allowance. You can get immediate access to the allowance if you meet the following qualifying conditions:

  • Setting up as self-employed in a business that has been approved in advance in writing by a Jobs Facilitator or Partnership Company
  • Getting one of the qualifying payments  below for at least 12 months:
    • Jobseeker's Allowance
    • Jobseeker's Benefit
    • One-Parent Family Payment
    • Blind Pension
    • Disability Allowance
    • Carer's Allowance (having stopped caring duties)
    • Farm Assist
    • Invalidity Pension
    • Incapacity Supplement
    • Pre-Retirement Allowance
    • Widow's/Widower's or Surviving Civil Partner's (Non-Contributory) Pension
    • Deserted Wife's Benefit or Allowance
    • Prisoner's Wife's Allowance or
    • Illness Benefit for 3 or more years.
The website selfemployedsupports.ie has information on the services and entitlements available if you are self-employed and your income is reduced.
  Hint: ESB
It has to be said that ESBI give excellent training. Along with mandatory in-house training, where ESBI engineers bring you up to speed on all aspects of power plants and their design and operation ESBI also provide great opportunities for external training, e.g. I have been on a training course in Amsterdam to upskill on gasification technology, I attended a conference in Pittsburgh to come up to speed with CO2 capture technologies etc.
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