Inspiration For International Women's Day 2019
08 Mar 2019
INTERNATIONAL WOMAN'S DAY
On this International Woman's Day we wanted to share inspiration to empower, inspire, encourage and challenge our entrepreneurial spirit. We questioned Mairead McGuinness MEP, a great inspiration to us women in agriculture, on some personal thoughts that may help inspire others #InternationalWomensDay.
1. In all the world which woman are you most inspired by and why?
My mother is still my number one inspirational figure. Sadly she passed away in 2012. She didn’t get the opportunities in her early years but was a great business woman and exceptionally generous person.
I’m a big fan of Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the US House of Representatives. She talks about how having five children taught her many things. And she is right. She didn’t enter politics at an early age, but boy has she made a huge impact!
2. What was your biggest challenge and how would you say you met it head on?
Hard to say. Biggest challenge for many women is self-belief and fear of failure. When I stood for election in 2004 I had no idea how difficult it would be. I survived that ordeal with the help of family and friends.
3. What has been your most memorable or proudest moment in your career to date?
Being elected as First Vice President of the European Parliament receiving over 75% of the valid poll of MEPs. This was a strong endorsement from my colleagues in the Parliament.
4. Do you have any advice to Mums juggling a career and a family?
It is wrong to say that you can do it all and have it all. When children come, life has to change to accommodate their needs. I often look back to when our first were born - twins! And how I managed to keep filming for Ear to the Ground and writing. I’m an excellent time manager - children teach you that and I do things NOW - rather than leaving things to be done tomorrow!
5. Do you have any advice for young women on the agricultural career route or starting a business?
I think starting out in a career is the hardest thing. So I’m a great believer in getting a job, sticking with it until something better comes along. Being in the right place at the right time helps - so luck is a big part in all our lives. That said you can make your own luck! Remember that there will be tough times but don’t dwell on the past and build a shield (invisible) around you to stop negative people getting to you. Above all else, work to the best of your ability and appreciate what you have rather than dwelling on what you don’t have.