Q&A with Nick McCarthy



Hi Nick,

Can you tell us a little about your background?

I was born and raised in Kildare but now live in Dublin. I studied biomedical engineering in Trinity and since then worked in a software company as a consultant while playing rugby.

Describe your position in Mason Alexander.

Joined the well established Accounting and Finance desk focusing on Practice. I work with trainees, part qualified and newly qualified accountants through to managers across audit and tax.

Is there anything that surprised you about the recruitment industry?

I was surprised by the ambition and drive in Mason Alexander. I know people who work in different recruitment firms, ranging from small one man bands to large international companies, and I can honestly say that Mason Alexander is in a league of it’s own. All I hear from other companies is that they are either happy staying a smaller size or they are large firms that have outdated processes, plague clients with hundreds of CV’s and only care about hitting KPI’s.

Favourite Mason Alexander tradition?

There is a well known Social and sports Committee doing some great work in the office so there is an activity every 2 weeks! We also have beers on a Friday which is a great tradition!

What does a typical day at Mason Alexander look like for you?

Everyday is different! I could be meeting a candidate for lunch, meeting with clients, having team meetings or out at events! We are really encouraged to get out there and meet people! We also hold many events throughout the year!

What would you say is the best thing about working in MA?

At the end of the day you are working with people to get them the jobs they want and working with businesses to get the right people. I’ve attended a lot of events and everyone says the same thing “To make a successful business you need to surround yourself with the right people”. That’s what Mason Alexander strives to achieve for itself and its clients.
The people make the business so I’m lucky to work in a place where everyone has their strengths and has the freedom to work hard, be creative and grow a strong network.

Do you have any tips for people looking for potential jobs?

Not to sound like a broken record but meet who you can and be clear, honest and curious. You will never know a role or a company better then by meeting the people who work in it.

Do you have any tips for clients that are looking for the best candidates?

Meet them informally for a coffee. Interviews can be daunting, but the open conversation over a coffee can make the candidate feel more comfortable and put their mind at ease!

Brand Awareness often can sway decisions aswell. Candidates are far more aware and have access to a lot of information so proactive engagement with your current staff is essential!

What is your top tip to success?

If you are doing something, do it right and give it 100% or else it’s not worth doing it.

Biggest Achievement?

I captained Trinity Rugby club to Promotion to AIL 1A and I was awarded a Pink from Trinity College for sporting excellence while finishing my degree.

Would you recommend MA to friends/colleagues? Why?

Of course! It’s a growing and successful business that gives everybody a chance to be successful, also the people make the business and we have the best people.

Who or what motivates you?

My family definitely motivate me the most. Recognition and Reputation are also big biggest motivators.

What is the best advice you have ever received?

When going networking or meeting someone leave your phone at home!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

This is one of the toughest questions to answer, and one I like to ask every candidate I meet. For me, I would love the opportunity to work abroad so it is great for me that Mason Alexander have opening an office in New York in their 2020 strategy!

What opportunities have come your way since joining MA?

I have been given the opportunity to organise events and to be creative and try out new things when it comes to networking. Also, I have been able to get top grade tennis coaching from colleague James Cluskey.
The training I have received has allowed me to sit across the table with people who I thought I would have to wait years to meet.

Ideal CV – One page or two?

Two, CVs unlock the door to a meeting/interview so it’s good to outline your background and show a bit of personality too!

Do it now or do it later?

Do it now, prolonging anything can only lead to issues.

Call or email?

Call, writing an email is slow and impersonal in most instances and writing essays was never my strong point!

Biggest turnoff on a CV?

A massive posed photo slapped on the top of a CV!

Are there any quotes that you live by?

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.

It’s not always what you know, it’s who you know.

Favourite part of the working week?

Friday 4.30 for the weekly beers and catch up but Thursday lunch times for the market on the canal are a great time to get out and meet people!

Your 5 year plan in 5 words

Build success while drinking pints!

Is there anyone who inspires you?

Meghan Markle! She went from Dicey’s to Buckingham Palace in only a few years!

If you would like to know more about what a career at Mason Alexander looks like or to talk about Accounting and Finance Roles, contact Nick on:

(01) 685 4414