This week in our MHC Life series, we speak to Ruth McHale, a Legal Secretary on our Construction team. Ruth talks about her first jobs and favourite holiday.
Tell us a bit about you and your career journey to MHC – what inspired you to get into this career?
Growing up I always wanted to be a Guard. However, when I finished school there was a freeze/embargo and I decided to do a legal secretary course as a stopgap and thankfully for MHC I never looked back. Upon reflection it's probably best I never made it into the Guards as I reckon I'd have been a weapon of a Ban Garda.
During my Legal Secretary course, I started working in a small solicitors firm at the tender age of 17. It was a one stop shop really…I started off as a secretary but before I knew it, I was the Receptionist, Legal Executive, Court Clerk, IT, Marketing, Records etc. Majority of my work here was Immigration and Human Rights with a tonne of Judicial Reviews sprinkled on top. I then went on to study at night while working and got a Diploma in Advanced Professional Legal Studies and a Law Degree.
Before working in MHC I did a short stint in McDowell Purcell, now known as Fieldfishers, in the Public & Regulatory Department were majority of the work related to sanctions and strike offs of professionals before Tribunals. Shortly after joining I became a Tenders Administrator on top of my role as a Legal Secretary. Later a former colleague, who was working in the MHC Knowledge Department at the time, asked me if I would like to join the team to assist with MHC's House Style Project. After 4 years in Knowledge, I decided I wanted to get back into a fee-earning department and moved to my current position here on the Construction Team which I've been in for the last 4 years.
What was your first job?
My first job was in a kids playcentre as a party host. I also delivered leaflets for a local shop for extra cash - but my first "real job" was a shop assistant at Penney's Swords.
Talk us through a typical day for you
Mornings are quite hectic in our house as I've three young girls. Everyone is up by 6/6.30am to get out the door for 7.15am. I get to the office about 8.15am and have my breakfast before work.
In the office my day can vary as I work across contentious and non-contentious matters, but mainly non-contentious. Work usually consists of getting Development Agreements, Contracts, Collateral Warranties and Appointments over the line. My sub-team is quite paper heavy, so you'll usually find me surrounded by a fort of boxes and paper.
When the day is done I go home to the kids and where I'm surrounded by more forts…
What tv shows have you binge watched recently?
I love a good binge, but the best shows I've watched this year are, The Bear, The Patient, The Boys, The Witcher (a lot starting with "The") Mr Inbetween and most recently Motherland.
What's your idea of a perfect holiday/favourite place you've ever visited?
I went to Jamaica (Montego Bay) about 10 years ago and it's by far the best place I've ever been to. Lots of culture and the people are amazing!
I did a Cruise daytrip back there on my honeymoon and it still lived up to the first time. Highly recommend.