Schneider Electric Marketing Manager for Ireland Sharon Cronin discusses the female leaders she admires


Schneider Electrics Sharon Cronin shares her admiration of leaders

Schneider Electric's Sharon Cronin shares her admiration of leaders

 March 10, 2021

Sharon Cronin, Marketing Manager for Ireland at Schneider Electric, takes the opportunity of International Women’s Day to reflect on the topic of Women in Leadership.


Evolving roles of women in leadership

In the 1930s my great-grandmother paid twenty Irish punts, a substantial sum at the time, to have my grandmother (Margaret “Dolly” Madigan) trained with a tailor as a dressmaker. This investment led to my grandmother starting her own dressmaking business and winning several contracts including providing the nurses uniforms for Barringtons Hospital. Dolly had six employees and a thriving business through countless contracts and private dressmaking. She also went on to fall in love, get married and have two beautiful daughters. Women in leadership roles is not new, but it is evolving and thankfully becoming more commonplace. 

Creating tangible business value through growth

I am the Schneider Electric Marketing Manager for Ireland working with the wider UK&I zone marketing team to deploy transformation offer, channel and segment marketing actions in Ireland, creating tangible business value through growth. 

I am a member of the zone marketing leadership team and the Ireland country management team ensuring the voice of the customer/market is always heard for the Irish market. 

Prior to Schneider Electric I worked in several companies within the technology space, spending almost a decade with Majesco a global leader of SaaS solutions to the insurance industry as the EMEA Marketing Manager.

Working with a diverse range of people

One of the key attractions of working in marketing for me is the ability to work with a wide range of diverse people as my position allows me to work across multiple departments, business units and organisations. For me it means that every day is different, and I love that everyone I work with brings something new and distinctive to the table. I am a firm believer that when you are dealing with people every day then you never stop learning.

Inspired by female leaders

Anne O’Leary CEO of Vodafone Ireland has always been a great inspiration to me, both in terms of her career progression in a male dominated environment but also her outlook on the importance of having a work-life balance

I had the pleasure of getting to know her through Piranha Triathlon Club through early morning sessions in UCD’s Olympic swimming pool and learnt first-hand how she always made time for staying fit and the importance of exercise to keep balance in your working life.

There have been studies* that have shown women won’t apply for a job unless they feel they meet 100% of the criteria, whilst men will apply after only meeting 60%. Women need to learn to push themselves out of their comfort zone and believe in themselves in order to progress in their careers. Women need to trust more in their own value, if they don’t believe in themselves then why should anyone else? Anne is a good example of someone who has continuously pushed herself out of her comfort zone and with great success, eventually leading to her current role as CEO of Vodafone Ireland.

The importance of mentoring 

I have had several informal mentors in the past. Whether formal or informal I think it is always important to have someone who you can turn to ask for advice in your career but also someone who can help you challenge yourself. Personally, it has worked well for me to seek mentorship from people whose personalities and strengths are quite different from my own. This has resulted in me being able to challenge myself in areas where I have been weaker. Addressing these weaker areas, whilst difficult or uncomfortable initially, will always result in improving your skillsets and building your confidence to work in new areas and spot opportunities that you may not have considered in the past. 

Admirable leadership traits

Common traits that I admire about leaders I have worked with in the past include; never being afraid to challenge the status quo, asking questions and being confident enough to disclose the areas they are not experts in, and asking the uncomfortable questions but always being mindful of staying personable with people making sure they continue to build those relationships.

My grandmother’s mother became sick and the pressures of family life led to her eventually giving up her business. Unfortunately, the supports were not there for a woman who was torn between family life and running her business.  Two generations later, my parents invested in my education, helping me to complete a MSc in Marketing. 

I too, fell in love, got married, and had two beautiful daughters. However, I have been very fortunate to have the supports in place that allow me to continue my career whilst also maintaining a balance that works for me and my family. 

I am acutely aware of my good fortune and endeavour to pay that forward through my leadership role in Schneider Electric and as a mother to my young daughters. Women in leadership is not a new concept but it is constantly evolving, it is up to us to continue to choose to challenge the status quo to support the next generations.


Pave the way for future generations as a Schneider Electric leader 

Begin an amazing career with a bright future at Schneider Electric within a high-performance environment that puts a priority on learning and development, collaboration, and well-being. 

Schneider Electric invites you to help the company co-create the future - discover new career opportunities.

 

Find out more

Stay connected by subscribing to our monthly newsletter and following us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.

Share this page:


   Linkedin      Twitter      Instagram     Facebook      Press release 

Join our women's careers community