One of the most important lessons that Mary Ruane, Senior Manager of Assurance at PwC Ireland, has learned throughout her career is that if you do not take the initiative and express your interest in new opportunities, they might pass you by. “If you want to try something new or different, just speak up,” advised Ruane. She continued, “There are endless opportunities and you will find that taking initiative and displaying an eagerness to learn can go a long way.”
With this attitude, Ruane has been able to enjoy a variety of different roles and experiences at PwC, where she is currently responsible for establishing and building strong relationships with clients, internally and externally. “It is an interesting time in asset management right now, partnering with our Clients who have weathered the storm of the credit crisis and are now dealing with the wave of regulation that followed,” said Ruane.
Career Path at PwC
Ruane graduated from Dublin City University in 2001 with a degree in Accounting and Finance. Shortly after, she joined PwC and planned to complete her auditing qualifications while working full-time. “I joined Assurance and was assigned to the asset management department, which was more by accident than design at the time. However, I quickly recognized that asset management was a growth industry that held a lot of different opportunities and that a chartered accounting qualification would provide a great basis for any professional career in Ireland or internationally” she recalled.
Ruane had a lot on her plate as she was learning the asset management industry, assisting clients with their audits, and studying for her professional qualifications exams, but after she passed her exams Ruane expressed her interest in supporting the development of young PwC professionals facing the journey she had just completed. . “Every year, we receive training on both technical skills and soft skills, and when the opportunity to get involved in the learning and education department presented itself, I took advantage of it,” said Ruane.
She trained and worked as a tutor in the learning and education department for about two months where her role involved teaching the intensive training course to new associates. Ruane enjoyed training so much that she continued to teach courses for the next four years. “At one point, I had trained the same group of people for three years in a row at different career levels, which was an extremely rewarding thing to do,” Ruane noted.
As a result of her commitment to training and on the job coaching, Ruane recently received a coaching award to recognize her developmental impact. “I benefitted greatly from coaching, and it is something that I have always believed strongly in from my first day at PwC,” she noted.