Things have changed completely, flipped on their head, in terms of how you work on a team
'I used to think I was going to be the next Willie Carson - and I probably didn't apply myself as much in school as I should have!
"Eventually, I began to realise that it wasn't going to work out, as I kept on growing. So it was back to reality for me, and onto a National Manpower work-experience programme.
"Basically, I just worked and worked. I should have concentrated on my insurance exams earlier in my life, because I only managed to complete them this year. My grandfather would have told me that the secret to success was hard work, but that will only bring you to a certain point. After that, you have to delegate.
"Things have changed completely for me: flipped on their head, in terms of how you work on a team and bring people with you. I'd love to have known that a long time ago.
"The key things you need are to encourage people, to delegate, to empower them to make decisions while communicating with you along the way, to make sure that everyone's happy with how things are going.
"Looking back, I wouldn't change anything. It was tough at the start but hard work paid off. Working with a team and bringing people with you is what it's all about now. It's been an interesting 36-year-road from being a stable lad to being president of the British-Irish Chamber of Commerce and CEO of Lloyd's Ireland - but I love what I do.
"Now I just wanted to give something back. I'm riding in a charity horse race for the Punchestown Kidney Research Fund next Saturday. I had to go from 14st 1lb to 11st, 7lbs. Losing weight is one of the hardest things I've ever done, but I'm nearly there.
"To be happy is probably the most important thing in life and family. You can demonstrate by example. I don't know how many people are following me on this journey for the weight loss, but weight-related health issues have become very topical in Ireland. I think this is something that a lot of people are going to take encouragement from.
"My father wasn't around for my wedding or for any of my siblings' weddings. He died suddenly from a heart attack when he was 55. I suppose that always in the back of my mind is the thought that if you have kids and you want to be around for those milestones, you may not be if you don't do something about your weight and your health. I know, as I had heart surgery two years ago."
Sunday Indo Business