THIS week’s High Flyer is Marie-Anne McVeigh, partner in MTB Solicitors
What was your first job?
While in 6th year at school, I worked in a local garage at the weekends
What qualifications do you have?
I hold a degree in law (LLB) from Trinity College Dublin.
After graduating from Trinity I completed the Legal Practice Course in Newcastle Upon Tyne before qualifying as a Solicitor both here in Northern Ireland and in England and Wales.
I am currently completing the STEP diploma (Society of Trusts and Estate Planning) which I hope to finish before the end of this year.
What do you attribute your success to?
Hard work, dedication and my competitive nature!
How would you describe yourself to someone who had never met you?
I would say I am friendly and fun but at the same time quite focussed and rather fastidious.
Who do you look up to in business?
That is an easy one – my Dad. I’ve followed in my Dad’s footsteps with my career choice and have now taken over the private client department within MTB Solicitors which was run by him as partner for over 40 years. My Dad has taught me everything I know.
How do you get the best out of people who work for you?
I think communication is key. I always try to ensure that we are talking, whether that’s just small talk about weekend plans or whether it is making sure that my staff understand what is being asked of them. I always like to ensure that if someone doesn’t understand the task they are being asked to do or if they have a problem, then my door is always open.
If you could change one thing about doing business in Northern Ireland, what would it be?
Sometimes I feel that business in Northern Ireland can be a little insular in comparison to other parts of the UK. This is a shame as I believe there is so much potential here in Northern Ireland waiting to be discovered. Tourism in particular has really taken off in more recent times and hopefully this will continue to put Northern Ireland on the global map.
What website or app could you not do without?
I don’t think I could do without news apps. I never have the time to read a newspaper so often dip into the various apps to keep up to date with what’s happening. That and admittedly I have a slight obsession with Pinterest! I am a little obsessed with home interiors and Pinterest is fantastic for finding inspiration. I also love it for finding birthday party ideas for my children.
What was the last book you read?
My work involves a lot of reading so in my limited downtime I tend to do other things. I do however make a point of reading to my six-year-old son and five-year-old daughter and have recently finished reading them Roald Dahl’s Esio Trot. It’s romantic, funny and ingenious, which is typical of Roald Dahl’s wonderful imagination and the kids loved it. We are now reading The Twits for the third time!
What car do you drive?
An Audi Q5. I still love it as much now as the day and hour I got it.
Tell us something interesting about yourself
I was a really keen golfer when I was younger. At the minute, with long hours and a young family, I don’t get the time to play much, but I hope to take it up again once my kids are a little older. It’s great to see high profile golf coming here and I’m looking forward to seeing the Open here next summer.
What’s your greatest passion outside work and family?
I am a very active person and love getting out and about, whether it’s a walk, a run or a circuits class. Besides precious time with my family, I love nothing more than getting together with close friends for a few glasses of wine and a nice bite to eat. Simple pleasures.