Barry Nyhan completed his BIS degree in May and went straight into technology sales for HubSpot in Dublin. We had a chat with Barry and here’s what he had to say…
Why did you do BIS?
BIS always felt like the natural choice for me. I always had a huge interest in business and technology, and I felt that getting a good grounding in both would really help jump start my career. Plus, I loved the idea of spending six months working in the US in 3rd year!
What was the best thing you got out of the course?
Whilst I think BIS gives people a pretty well rounded education, and the life experience you get from the six month placement is invaluable, I am a firm believer that you have to earn your degree outside of the lecture halls by getting stuck into life on campus. One of the most valuable things that I did during my time there was getting involved in the Entrepreneurial & Social Society, where I got the chance to meet lots of incredible people and help run a series of pretty cool events. BIS always has had a strong representation in the E&S society, and it’s thanks to the BIS network that I got the chance to join.
Where did you go on work placement in 3rd year?
I ended up working in the center of Boston for six months with Eaton Vance, an investment management firm with a history dating back to 1924. My role revolved around IT security and I could not have had a better time. I had an incredible six months, and the stories you come home with will still be thrown around long after!
Where are you now?
Right now I’m working in technology sales for a company called HubSpot in Dublin. Sales is not a role typically mentioned when talking about BIS career paths, but it is testament to the flexibility that BIS provides that you can jump onto a career path like this. Beyond the obvious benefits when it comes to a career in sales, there’s a lot more there when you take a step back; you’re in an ‘always be learning’ environment, you improve your storytelling skills every day, and you get the chance to help others achieve the goals that they’ve set out for themselves and their company.
How did you get this job?
I knew that sales was an area I wanted to dive into after college so I made a list of companies that I thought would be a good fit for myself that had a strong sales process in place where I could learn tons, and really tighten up my selling skills. I remember having a chat with a few people from HubSpot back in the Web Summit a couple of years ago and they left a lasting impression that helped make the decision a bit easier. I got in touch with one of their recruiters and within a couple of weeks I was told I was joining the team!
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given relating to your career?
Embark on your journey. Don’t hold back. Surround yourself with people who want to see you succeed more than you do.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced, and how did you overcome it?
Biggest challenge I have is trying to balance my personal and work life. I’m the sort of person that loves to stay busy. For me, it’s incredibly important to always have a side project, so when I’m not working at HubSpot, I’m exploring a side project. Sometimes that leads to a few of my mates having to give me a gentle reminder to take a step back every so often.
Looking back now, is there anything that you would have done differently?
I have made a ton of mistakes in the past couple of years, and I don’t think that’s going to stop anytime soon. The only thing I would say though is that I wouldn’t change it, I feel lucky to be able to make them in the first place, every mistake leads to a new perspective, and I’m all the better for it.
If you had one piece of advice to offer someone considering doing BIS, what would it be?
I am extremely biased but I honestly think BIS is one of the best available courses on offer in UCC. You get off to a great start with a well rounded education, and the placement program in 3rd year will give you such a head start once you graduate. I think it’s a no brainer.