Niamh Hennessy is a business journalist with the Irish Examiner. She has been working with the Irish Examiner for the last five years and has also worked as Chief Reporter with the Irish Post in London.
She has a degree in Government and Public Policy from UCC and spent time working at an intern in the New York Assembly.
Because I am a Girl I ask… people to put gender, sexuality and race aside and see people for who they really are. People are too quick to judge others based on what they know about the person rather than actually getting to know the person inside.
Because I am a Girl I believe… everybody should have the same opportunities in life, male and female. However women can strive to be whatever they want to be in today’s world. I truly believe women have to work harder than men to become a success in the business world – but anything is possible if you really want it.
Because I am a Girl I hope… that we will see more women represented in Irish politics. I would not like to see a quota system introduced but would hope that women would want to make a difference themselves. I also feel it is important to have more female representation on company boards. Women are at a disadvantage in the work environment given the time it takes to have children but companies need to realise the value of the female mind.
Because I am a Girl I wonder… would an employer hire a man over a woman. Alan Sugar of the UK Apprentice made it clear last year that when it comes down to it he would think twice before hiring a woman because women need time off to have children. I don’t for a moment think this is right but it is a reality for women. They have to fight harder than men to have their voice heard.
Because I am a Girl I dream… of the future and what that holds. Family and career are very important to me and I hope that one day I will be able to maintain a successful career and family life.
Because I am a Girl I remember… having the happiest childhood a person could hope for. My mother gave up work as soon as her kids were born and she was there for us every step of the way. She is the most loving and wonderful woman I know and I have extremely happy memories of growing up. My mum used to put our lunch in lucky bags and she’d put a piece of fruit, a sandwich and a biscuit in a bag and myself, my sister and brother would get turns at picking out one each. And no we were not allowed to pick the same thing twice!
Because I am a Girl I like… clothes, chats with my friends, weekends away with my boyfriend, sunshine, politics, theatre, productive days at work, hanging out with my sister, foreign holidays, hairdressers, football, cups of tea, Christmas dinner with my family, rain when it’s warm, Mad Men, computers, after work drinks, gossip, meeting new people…
Because I am a Girl I dislike … the teachings of the Catholic church. Women should be allowed to be priests and same sex couples should have the right to marry if they wish. The world has moved on so much but the Catholic church has failed to move with it. Women would make wonderful priests and if they were encouraged to. If this was the case then I think the Catholic church would win a lot more followers.
Because I am a Girl I feel… us girls need to stick up for each other. There are many advantages to being a girl but there are also drawbacks and I think that in work and in life women need to support each other. The glass ceiling still exists and smashing it would be a lot easier if we stuck together.
Because I am a Girl I… admire women such as Mary Robinson, Hillary Clinton, Anna Wintour, Cynthia Carroll, Miriam O’Callaghan, Condoleezza Rice, Ho Ching, Heidi Klum, Norah Casey and Cindy Gallop.
– Niamh Hennessy