The opportunist

May 01, 2018
Grant Thornton’s Cara Sloan has never shied away from a challenge, even if it meant upping sticks for a new life – and new role – in New York.

How did you end up working in New York?

Grant Thornton set up the US Irish Business Group in 2013 and I was asked if I’d be interested in taking up the role as Head of the Group last year. I jumped at the chance. I had a few conversations with firm leaders in Ireland and America and, after going through the visa process (which was relatively painless) arrived in New York mid-November last year.

Were you nervous about leaving home for the US?

Not particularly. I was on secondment in Lloyds Banking Group in Edinburgh for 12 months in 2013 so while this was a lot further afield, I was more excited than nervous.

What does your daily workload look like?

It varies greatly. My role as Head of the US Irish Business Group means spending a lot of time meeting contacts and clients, and hosting and organising events. I also work as a manager on the Financial Due Diligence team, this role can involve some travel so really, every day is different.

What’s the one skill or talent you value most?

In terms of hiring new talent, we really seek out people who want to learn and are curious. People who always want to improve really appeal to us.

How can others climb the career ladder quickly?

As my father-in-law always reminds me, there’s no substitute for hard work! Working hard and taking ownership for your work is key. Even if you make mistakes, if you really care and want to do a good job, people will really appreciate that and you’ll be rewarded.

Cara Sloan ACA is Head of the US Irish Business Group at Grant Thornton and a Manager in the firm’s Financial Due Diligence division.