We were delighted to host the Bord Gáis Energy Leadership: Building a winning team business conference in Galway, on the 11th of May at the Clayton Hotel in Galway. Our aim was to provide business owners and leaders in the Connacht region with the opportunity to learn, network and hear fresh insights that they could take back to the office and implement themselves.

The day kicked off with a motivational session by Pat Divilly, Galway based entrepreneur and fitness expert, who engaged the attendees with a lively session, explaining the principles of motivating a team and maintaining energy and enthusiasm.

RTÉ broadcaster and MC Keelin Shanley then introduced the Director of Executive Education at the Irish Management Institute, Dr Colm Foster, who presented the audience with a run down on what it takes to lead a team. High performance teams have trust in each other, they are strategic, flexible, supportive, well trained and understand their roles. It is important for high performance teams to embrace healthy conflict. Too much or too little conflict will have an impact on performance.

Stewart Dunne, Head of Audit at BDO then led a panel on the differences between a family business and a non-family business. Bernie Butler of Good4u represented the family business and Aoibheann O’Brien of FoodCloud represented the non-family business, both expertly gave their opinions and first hand experiences of each.

Our sporting panel, Creating a Winning Culture, chaired by RTE sports reporter Darren Frehill, brought together three sporting heroes: Pat Lam, former Rugby international and head coach of Connacht Rugby, Joe Canning, Galway Senior Hurler and Katie Walsh, leading Irish jockey. The panel shared their advice and insights on how to drive motivation and the parallels between sport and business in creating a winning ethos during an interactive session. The panel concluded with a lively dance session instigated by Pat Lam – meaning all attendees left the conference fully energised and motivated!

A Q&A session brought the event to a close on what was a hugely successful business conference that gave attendees insights into some of the most successful sporting and business brains in Ireland.