A team within the DCU Centre for Family Business was commissioned by Fingal County Council to complete this case study. The Family Business Report, Lessons in Resilience and Success: a Snapshot of Multi-generational Family Businesses in Fingal, Dublin was produced by Martina Brophy and Eric Clinton. Their study follows twelve family businesses which are all multi-generational, family-owned and head-quartered in Fingal. Through conducting interviews with these individuals they were able to distinguish needs, challenges and strengths that come with running a family business.
“Family businesses are a complex and highly resourceful business type. Knowledge, learnings, resources, values and traditions pass across generations of a family: often, what is found are strategic resources and capabilities that can make a family firm distinctive and competitively advantaged,” writes Dr. Eric Clinton in this study.
The report provides a snapshot of 12 multi-generational family businesses in Fingal with family involvement ranging from second to fourth generation. Between them they employ over 3,500 and have turnovers ranging from €1.5 million to in excess of €100m per annum.
Business & Finance, Ireland’s leading business magazine, have covered the topic in an article, Talent in Family Business. Dr. Eric Clinton, Director of the DCU Centre for Family Business, covers a variety of topics within the topic of family business from how much family should get involved to how important it is to become a cohesive team.
Families have an effect in the businesses day-to-day happenings whether it is positive or negative. Thus, through the Family Business study Clinton and Brophy come together and provide information and recommendations on how to run a successful family run business.
Check out what the DCU Centre for Family Business is all about:
Congratulations to Doireann Sheelan, a DCU Executive MBA student, who received a Special Award for her individual contribution at the recent MBA Association of Ireland Strategy Challenge competition, held recently at Waterford Institute of Technology.
Doireann was part of team, with fellow Executive MBA Students Kalum King, Neil Curran and James Cannon, who presented on the case study “Turkish Airlines – Widen Your World”. While they did not win the competition (the prize went to WIT) they acquitted themselves admirably receiving great praise from the judges for the depth of their analysis.
This annual competition, hosted by the MBA Association of Ireland (MBAAI), attracts entrants from all the universities and institutes of technology in Ireland that run MBA programmes. Peter McNamara, Professor of Management & Head of School at NUI Maynooth, and Chairperson of the competition, commented: “All four of the teams did a very good job of analysing the case and making recommendations, especially under considerable time pressure.”
The DCU Executive MBA is now recruiting ambitious participants for September 2016.
For more information, visit postgrad.dcu.ie/mba or email email@example.com.
Pictured is the DCU MBA team with the MBA Association of Ireland President Alacoque McMenamin,
By Anthony Foley, Senior Lecturer in Economics, DCU Business School
This blog post examines the Brexit impact on the Irish drinks sector but I should start with some clarifying comments. I am convinced by economic analysis that a UK exit from the EU would have a negative economic impact on the global economy, the UK economy and the Irish economy. Ireland and the UK have very strong economic flows in imports, exports, travel and tourism, people and finance. There would also be particular political and social negatives for Ireland because of the Republic/Northern Ireland relationship and the possible termination of the long standing common labour market between Ireland and the UK. The scale of the negative economic effect will depend on the speed, certainty and content of the necessary new trade deal between the UK and the EU, and the UK and the rest of the world.
Very little campaign discussion and debate has taken place on the likely nature of a post exit relationship. Indeed there is not a common position within the Brexit Campaign on the desirable replacement of the existing trade relationship. In addition, there is the added complication that the majority of the UK Commons are against Brexit and that presumably the Commons would have to approve the new deal. Elements of a new deal might disappoint many who would have voted for Brexit. Despite my conviction that Brexit would have negative effects and the uncertainty associated with the post Brexit situation, I must declare that, if I was a voter in the UK referendum, I would vote for exit. This reflects political factors, notably a lack of desire on my part to have an ever closer political union (even though the reform deal allows the UK to “opt out” of ever closer union). I recognise that economic integration brings economic and social benefits and that a degree of political integration is needed to facilitate economic integration but I would prefer the political integration to be minimised and to focus more on inter-government agreements.
There has been much discussion and coverage of the overall economic impact of Brexit on Ireland but relatively little discussion of the impact on specific sectors. This note deals with Brexit and the Irish drinks industry. Brexit will have a negative impact on the Irish drinks industry. It will worsen conditions for trade with the UK. Depending on the details of a new, as of now unknown, trade relationship and agreement between the UK and the EU, new trade regulations and barriers will increase costs for both importers and exporters. This will be a particular problem for small drinks enterprises such as the new craft breweries and small distilleries which may target the UK as an initial export market because of its proximity and similarities. In addition, Sterling has already declined in value because of overall concerns with Brexit in the foreign exchange and financial markets and this will continue and accelerate if the UK votes to leave the EU.
A declining Sterling reduces the competitiveness of exports from Ireland to the UK and improves the competitiveness of imports from the UK. Consumers may benefit from the latter but Irish drinks producers competing on the domestic market will lose out. However, fluctuations in the exchange rate with Sterling are not a new phenomenon for the Irish drinks industry. The drinks industry has a substantial volume of trade with the UK but the industry, notably in liqueurs and whiskey, has generated substantial export sales in non EU markets which do not have the much easier market access of the EU and EEA countries.
In addition, Brexit is expected to have, and is currently having, an immediate and short term negative impact on the level of UK economic activity which reduces the UK demand for imported products and services. A continuing long term negative overall economic effect on the UK economy is expected from Brexit but this is less certain and depends on how the UK uses its increased policy scope and freedom over the next few years and on the trade deal negotiated with the EU. There may also be a wider negative Brexit effect whereby the uncertainty raised by Brexit, for example, on the future maintenance of the EU, has a global negative economic effect resulting in lower growth and lower levels of economic activity. However, this can be minimised by a speedy determination of the new trade and economic relationship between the EU and the UK.
The Irish drinks industry generated exports of €1241.8 million in 2015, of which €314.4 million or 25% went to the United Kingdom. €224.8 million was sold to Britain and €89.6 million was sold to Northern Ireland. The largest national market for Irish drinks exports is the United States with €485.4 million or 39%. Britain is our second largest national market for drinks exports and Northern Ireland is our third largest. The UK market share of 25% for drinks exports compares to a UK share of 14% for total Irish merchandise exports. The drinks exports are more dependent on the UK market than overall exports. Individual drinks products such as soft drinks and cider are particularly reliant on the UK market, much more so than the average drinks situation, as referred to below.
Drinks imports were €785.1 million in 2015 of which the UK provided €305.8 million or 39%. The UK provided 27% of our total imports resulting in drinks imports being more UK focused than overall imports. Britain provided €273.3 million in drinks imports and Northern Ireland €32.5 million. Britain is by far, the largest source of drinks imports followed by France with €89.2 million. By contrast, the USA provided only €18.2 million in imports compared to the UK €305.8 million. The UK imports include products produced in the UK and products produced elsewhere but distributed from the UK. Adding imports and exports, Irish drinks international trade was €2026.9 million in 2015, of which the UK accounted for €620.2 million or 30.6%.
The sectoral drinks export dependence on the UK/British market is shown in the table below. There are very substantial differences between different beverage types with consequent different levels of Brexit-related impact.
UK role in individual Irish exports of beverages 2015
|beverage||Exports € million||Exports to UK € million||UK share %|
|Cider||56.9||40.2 (Britain only)||70.7|
|Whiskey||443.9||19.1 (Britain only)||4.3|
|Other spirits (mainly liqueurs)||313.2||13.5 (Britain only)||4.3|
Source. CSO Trade Statistics
Soft drinks exports are very reliant on the UK market and hence are particularly vulnerable to the negative effects of Brexit. 81.4% of soft drinks exports are sold on the UK market. The same is true of cider, 70.7% of cider exports are sold in the British market. Beer has a much lower but still high share of its exports sold in the UK market, 43%.
The situation is completely different for whiskey and liqueurs. Whiskey has been the drinks export growth story of the past few years but the UK has contributed little to it. Of €443.9 million in whiskey exports, only €19.1 million or 4.3% is sold in the British market. 65% of Ireland’s whiskey exports are sold in markets outside the EU. The USA on its own accounts for €233.7 million or 52.6% of total whiskey exports compared to the British 4.3% share. In the liqueurs category Britain accounts for only 4.3% of exports, the same as whiskey. Non-EU markets absorb 78.4% of Irelands liqueur exports compared to Britain’s 4.3% share. The USA absorbs €163.8 million or 52.3% of total Irish liqueur exports.
Within the drinks export sector soft drinks and cider are very exposed to the UK market, beer is also significantly exposed to the UK but whiskey and liqueurs have a small degree of exposure to the British market.
On the import side, soft drinks accounted for €248.9 million of which Britain supplied €173.0 million or 69.5%. There was €233.0 million of wine imports (excluding sparkling wine) of which Britain supplied €14.6 million or 6.3%. Britain supplied €33.6 million of beer imports or 24.2% of the total of €138.7 million. Whiskey imports were only €15.6 million of which Britain supplied €6.4 million or 41.0%. Imports of other spirits and liqueurs amounted to €59.9 million of which Britain supplied €16.2 million and Northern Ireland €23.8 million. The UK share was 66.8%.
Overall, the British or UK sourced drinks imports were soft drinks €173.0 million, beer €33.6 million, whiskey €6.4 million, liqueurs €40.0 million and wine €14.6 million. The increased competitiveness advantage of UK drinks imports into Ireland will be most felt by domestic producers of soft drinks and, to a lesser extent, beer producers.
It is definite, in my opinion, that the short term and current economic impact of Brexit will be negative for Ireland and the drinks industry, and indeed negative for the UK economy. There will be lower UK economic activity, Sterling is declining relative to the euro which reduces Irish trade competitiveness and trade costs and regulation cost will be higher. However, a weaker Sterling improves UK export competitiveness. It is less certain that the longer term performance of the UK economy under Brexit will be definitely worse than if the UK stays in the EU. Much will depend on how the UK government uses its increased policy discretion. The Brexit campaign has been relatively quiet on what it would do with the increased policy independence. The scale of the negative impact will depend on the speed and detail of the new UK/EU trade and economic relationship but it is very likely that a reasonable new trade deal will be done with a low impact on trade transaction costs. While some Irish drinks enterprises and sectors will be significantly hit by the direct and indirect effects of Brexit, others such as whiskey, have very limited direct exposure to the UK economy.
Apart from the export/import issues discussed above, Ireland and the drinks industry will have a strong interest in the details of new arrangements for border/customs control, tariffs, regulations, labour mobility, work visas, security and foreign investment. Unfortunately, Ireland will not negotiate this new relationship with the UK. It will be done by the EU as a whole and, while Ireland will have an input, the eventual agreement will reflect the overall EU position. Ireland engages in high volumes of trade with countries outside the EU; the drinks industry has established substantial sectoral markets outside the EU. Membership of the EU is not a necessary condition to develop drinks exports but clearly, the lower the trade barriers the easier is the task. Brexit is not equivalent to termination of economic relations. Brexit will not result in isolation of the UK economy. There will be a new trade relationship between the UK and the EU, as there is a trade relationship between the EU and other economies in the global economy. The negative economic impact of a Brexit can be minimised and kept low by a speedy agreement on the “new” relationship.
The Nissan Generation Next programme is designed to support ambitious Irish people, from whatever walk of life, who have the drive and determination to become tomorrow’s leaders. DCU Business School graduates Shane Carthy (BBS 2014, MSc Business Strategy 2015) and Ryan Scott (BBS 2014) have been named as finalists in this years edition.
Shane has battled adversity to become a club All-Ireland winning footballer and an integral part of the Dublin Senior Football team. His sporting goal is to win an All-Ireland title with Dublin and his business goal is to help Ireland reach its renewable energy targets by 2020 through the introduction of sustainable and innovative energy solutions.
Ryan is one of the founders of DropChef, who make cooking dinner easier by delivering all the ingredients to cook a healthy dinner, along with an easy-to-follow recipe, straight to your door. Each ingredient is pre-measured, saving you time, money and eliminating your food waste.
Voting closes on the 28th of June and you can vote once every 24hours.
The DCU Executive MBA is a two-year part-time programme that is widely recognised as the degree of choice for rising executives with ambitions to be Senior Managers/CEOs, whatever their specialist backgrounds. Here are ten reasons why it may be the programme for you:
DCU’s Executive MBA is accredited by the Association of MBAs (AMBA), which assesses the quality of MBA programmes worldwide. You will graduate with an internationally recognised and accredited qualification. DCU Business School is also one of only two schools in Ireland with AACSB accreditation – placing it in the top 5% worldwide.
MBA participants, along with other assignments, will conduct a strategic consultancy project, which integrates the knowledge, skills and values of the programme and provides an opportunity for to deliver real value to your organisation.
MBA participants pursue a programme of action-based projects and workshops over 2 years. Self-assessments, and team and facilitator feedback develop self-awareness of own leadership competencies, facilitates targeting development opportunities, deepens emotional intelligence and enhances competence to think and act as a leader and people manager.
The DCU Executive MBA programme embodies the key values of the University’s strategy in its emphasis on enterprise and translation of knowledge into practice. The Enterprise Engagement module includes visits to a number of companies with strong growth strategies. The visits are supported by lectures and our Executive Speaker Series on issues relating to globalisation, sustainability and strategic growth.
MBA participants will broaden their perspective and focus upon global organisations on the International Study Week. In recent years, participants have attended lectures on leadership, global strategy and innovation at Harvard, Boston University and Stanford University. Visits to San Francisco, Silicon Valley, and Boston included meetings with start-ups, incubators and multinational organisations focused on innovation, entrepreneurship, leadership, strategy and new technologies.
We believe that an interactive and participative learning environment is best achieved in small classes
The MBA teaching faculty are leaders in their field, with many publishing in leading international journals and presenting at international conferences. DCU Business School research priorities emphasise equally the creation of new knowledge (discipline-based scholarship) and the application, transfer and interpretation of knowledge to improve management practice and teaching (contributions to practice).
We adopt three approaches to learning:
- A focus on knowledge, where participants engage in class-based lectures and workshops
- A focus on leadership skills, working in a hands-on team-based environment and assess and develop their own leadership competencies
- A focus on action, engaging in projects applying lessons learnt back into practice
When you join the DCU Executive MBA programme, you will join a global network of almost DCU 16,000 DCU Business School graduates, including 1,000 MBA’s. The DCU Business School Alumni group is a vibrant and active community with many of the graduates participating in events and activities throughout the year. These include:
- Business Breakfast Briefings
- Alumni Networking Evenings and Social Events
- Alumni Careers Day
DCU Business School values its Alumni and appreciates the contribution that they make to the life of the School by their involvement with various initiatives. We also want to be a life-long resource and partner to our Alumni throughout their careers.
DCU Executive MBA graduates are highly sought after in the jobs market, with many going on to pursue senior management roles in organisations both at home and abroad. Recent graduates are now working in roles such as Client Manager, Construction Director, Enterprise Architect, Financial Controller, Managing Director, Product Manager Sales Director, Senior Software Engineer, and Technical Programme Manager.
Interested in learning more about our Executive MBA programme? Download our brochure here
Every year DCU is required by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) to conduct a survey among recent graduates on their employment status, up to a year after graduation. The survey is called the HEA First Destination Return. It is used to report on graduate employability and to help us develop and improve our services to students. We are asking everyone who recently completed a course at DCU in 2015 to take part in the survey to find out what they have gone on to do.
The survey takes about 3 minutes to complete. We are asking everyone to complete the survey, even if you continued to study at DCU, or if the course you completed was a course you did whilst working (e.g part-time course). If you do not complete the online survey, we will telephone you to follow up. Please contact us if you want to specify a time and date to be called.
You will need your DCU Student Number to complete the survey. Please note that the information you give is confidential and will only be used in the preparation of statistics.
To say thanks for your participation, you will be entered into a draw for a €200 One for All Voucher, or one of 5 DCU hoodies.
If you have any questions regarding the survey, please email the DCU Careers Service at firstname.lastname@example.org
Although you may have now completed your course, DCU Careers Service is still available to you. If you would like help finding employment opportunities and developing your career plan, please contact email@example.com.
DCU Business School MSDM (Masters in Digital Marketing) students recently went on the programme’s annual trip to India. Read their second blog about their ‘Industry Day’:
As part of our MSDM trip to Bangalore we got the opportunity to visit IBM Bangalore and also Christ University. These industry visits gave us a great opportunity for networking and also to learn what it is like to do business in Bangalore. Our first industry visit of the trip was to IBM. In IBM we got the opportunity to visit the data centre and also gain some insights into cloud computing in IBM. This was very interesting for us and gave us the opportunity to learn about the power of cloud computing and that latest cloud computing technology.
Our next stop was to Christ University in Bangalore. Here we were invited to a conference called Unlearn Digital Marketing. We started off the day with an introduction and were welcomed to the University. Our own lecturer Graham Hunt was then invited to speak at the conference. He spoke digital marketing and how it operates in Ireland. After this we then gained some great insights into the differences in how digital marketing works in India.
A panel discussion was next where the floor was opened up for different questions. Some of the different questions that were asked were do with different digital marketing tactics that can be used in start ups, how to deal with ad blockers, the power of periscope and much more. This was an opportunity for us to understand the differences in digital marketing in India.
After the panel discussion the MSDM class were all asked up on stage to introduce themselves and to tell the indian students about MSDM. We were also asked to speak about our experience in India and were then presented with a gift for visiting the university. After this we got the opportunity to network with the indian students and learn about the different courses that they were studying. We finished off the day with dinner with the alumni of Christ University.
Your hard study is nearly complete and you are on the last stretch of the road. Here are some important final tips to help you prepare for the exams next week:
- Exam Timetable – Make sure you know what rooms your exams are in and what time they start. Also make sure you know what CAMPUS you will be on as not all exams will be held on the DCU Glasnevin campus. Factor in travel times to campuses that you are not familiar with, allowing time for you to find the location of your exam hall. Also be aware of parking availability.
- Materials – Do you have enough pens, pencils, a watch, calculator, ruler, glasses, water, student card?
- Food for Energy – Have a balanced breakfast or lunch before the exam. A meal with lots of carbohydrates and proteins will give the body enough energy to get through the exam, e.g. breakfast with eggs, meats, toast, etc. or a chicken and pasta lunch.
- Last minute revision – It may help to use blank cards or post-its for writing your key notes to help with last minute revision. Some students prefer to switch off before an exam and leave the notes at home.
- Plan your timing – If you know the format your exam is going to take (check past papers to get an idea), plan out how much time you want to spend on each question and stick to it. For example, if you have 2 hours to answer 3 out of 5 essay questions, you could plan your timing as follows:
15 minutes Read all questions, write down any key words/phrases 30 minutes Q1 30 minutes Q2 30 minutes Q3 15 minutes Check over each question & make sure details are correct on exam booklet(s)
- Write, write write! – If you leave an answer blank, you will automatically get no marks. If you have a tendency to ‘go blank’ in an exam hall setting, take a few deep breaths and write down any words you associate with the topic to help jog your memory. Attempt each question using insight from your lectures, examples from your tutorials and your own external research, knowledge and experience.
- Get some sleep – A good night’s sleep and being alert on the day will often be of more benefit than anything you might cram in while staying up all night before an exam.
- Nervous? – Yes, this is normal – it is adrenalin moving around the body – use this energy to motivate yourself to do well. Focus on positive thoughts to help relax your body and mind.
- If you are worried about anything – talk to your lecturer, Chairperson, family or friends. Student Support Advisers are also available Monday – Friday , 9.15am – 5.00pm if you have any concerns and you wish to talk. The extenuating circumstances form can also be downloaded here should you need to avail of it.
For more great tips check out DCU’s Student Support and Development guide to to getting the results you want!
The accounting education change debate is not new, indeed, since the first accounting programmes were offered by universities and professional accountancy bodies in the 19th century, their relevance and currency has been questioned. However, the nature and scale of the change debate has intensified over the past thirty years, as accounting education within higher education has expanded considerably and there has been an explosion in demand for those with accounting knowledge and skills in the global marketplace.
The most enduring criticism of accounting education is that it fails to appropriately prepare professional accountants to meet the challenging and dynamic needs of contemporary organisations. More particularly, it has been reported that many accounting programmes focus on developing technical accounting knowledge and skills at the expense of broader business knowledge and competencies, thus failing to prepare students to cope with knowledge obsolescence and changing demands on accountants in organisations. Many academics also consider that the dominance of the accounting profession in shaping accounting education means that programmes provide “a narrow, functionalist view of the discipline” and fail both to expose students to multiple perspectives of accounting and to enrich their intellectual capabilities such that they can critique current practice and develop innovative ideas.
Many educators have listened to the criticisms and significant changes are evident in the programmes offered by professional bodies and universities. Accounting programmes now focus on developing the multiple types of competences needed by accountants in the modern business world. Further, many programmes provide a wider perspective on accounting and explore topics beyond the traditional, technical syllabus (e.g. sustainability, corporate social responsibility, accounting in society etc.), in addition to embracing both broader business subjects and skills development.
There is no doubt that there is scope to further enrich the education of accountants, however, the time is ripe to shift the focus of the accounting education change debate to the delivery of accounting courses to those who will not become accountants. Non-accountants do not need to be taught the intricacies of technical accounting, instead they need to understand the role of accounting in their organisations and how accounting information impacts on their roles, whether that be as a marketing specialist in a multi-national, a family business owner or a GP in a medical practice. Thus the attention of accounting educators needs to focus more astutely on the content and orientation of the accounting courses taught to MBA students and the undergraduate courses that are taught to general business, engineering, science and humanities students. If such courses focus on cultivating a contextual understanding of core accounting concepts and also develop some appropriate financial analysis skills, they will provide students with the competence and confidence to participate effectively in the strategic discourse and decision-making in organisations. Thus, by engaging in this debate, accounting educators have an opportunity to add real value to the career prospects of non-accounting specialists who aspire to management and leadership roles.
Barbara Flood is Professor of Accounting and Deputy Dean at DCU Business School. Her research focuses on accounting education and training and she is a member of the Education, Training and Lifelong Learning Board of Chartered Accountants Ireland.
 Boyce, G. (2004) Critical accounting education: teaching and learning outside the circle, Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 15(4/5), 565-586.
 In their model of professional competence, Cheetham and Chivers (1998) contend that professional competence comprises of Knowledge/Cognitive competence, Functional competence, Personal/ Behavioural competence, Values/Ethical competence and a range of meta competencies, such as communication, analysis, reflection. See Cheetham, G and Chivers, G. (1998) The reflective (and competent) practitioner: a model of professional competence which seeks to harmonise the reflective practitioner and competence-based approaches, Journal of European Industrial Training, 22(7), 267-276.