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I get working-mum guilt too – first female Glanbia chief


Siobhan Talbot. Photo: Dylan Vaughan

Siobhan Talbot. Photo: Dylan Vaughan

Siobhan Talbot. Photo: Dylan Vaughan

GLANBIA'S new chief Siobhan Talbot said that she suffers from working-mum guilt just like her peers.

The businesswoman was this week appointed as the first female boss of the food group – only the second time ever at an Irish publicly listed company.

But the mum-of-two said that the key to a successful woman was her family support network that she can rely on.



Originally from Kilkenny, she studied commerce in UCD and worked with accountancy firm PwC before joining Glanbia in 1992.

But she said that she "undoubtedly" suffered from working-mum guilt.

"With the kids, particularly when they are small and running around," she said.

"Undoubtedly (she had guilt)."

She rose through the ranks at Glanbia, but Ms Talbot said she didn't have a determined path and praised her family and colleagues for giving her support.

"It would probably sound great to say that I had this masterplan but, to be perfectly honest, I didn't," she said.

"I think I was fortunate that I have always loved what I do. I stepped through a career path with the encouragement each time of the folk that I was working with.

"My husband Bill (a retired garda) is a fantastic support and I have two teenage children," she said. "So, like everybody working full time, it is that juggle."

Ms Talbot and took up the role as group finance director in 2009. She is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland and will take over from current boss John Moloney in June.

But she doesn't think that the introduction of a gender quota for boards in business will aid women's progression.

"I can appreciate that there may be times and particular roles in life when you need a blunt instrument," she told Miriam O'Callaghan (inset) on The John Murray Show, RTE Radio 1.

"I think in a commercial perspective it really has to be based on merit. If you are talking to young guys, young girls, I think it is really important that their career development is based on merit."

clairemurphy @herald.ie