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What Being a Trailblazer Means to Salesforce Ireland's Country Leader

Sadie Evans

February 28, 2024

Salesforce Ireland’s Country Leader, Carolan Lennon, is no stranger to blazing her own trail. After starting her career in the finance industry, she went back to school to get her MBA, before rising the ranks in the telecomms industry and then moving into tech.

Now, as Salesforce Ireland’s Country Leader, Carolan has steered the #1 AI CRM’s Ireland employees through a period of immense growth — from cutting the ribbon on the freshly-built Dublin Tower in 2023 to preparing to host the upcoming Trailblazing Women summit, live-streamed to millions across the globe. (Psst: you can RSVP for that event right now!) Learn more about her story — and why moving to the vibrant city of Dublin might be the right career move for you — in the Q&A below:

 

What does being a Trailblazer mean to you?

Women sitting in an auditorium talking casually
Salesforce Tower Dublin hosted the graduation ceremony of CodePlus students, young female coders learning skills and exploring tech careers.

For me, being a Trailblazer is having a role where there’s strong alignment between your values and the work you’re doing. Are you having an impact? Are you making a difference?


I always say about a role: you should leave it better than when you found it. Whether it’s blazing a trail to help a customer in a new way, helping us on our sustainability journey, or getting involved with our Business Resource Groups, you should be able to look back and say I made a difference there. I left it better than I found it.

 

 

 

How would you describe the culture of Salesforce?

A Chinese New Year dragon surrounded by smiling Salesforce employees
Asiapacforce, the Business Resource Group for Salesforce’s Asia Pacific community and allies celebrated Lunar New Year at the Dublin Tower.

People come to work at Salesforce to do more than just sell or make products. They come to work to feel like they’re a part of something bigger. I joined Salesforce in 2022 because I saw an opportunity to really make a difference, not just with fantastic technology and helping customers with that journey, but also having an impact on the world the way our 1-1-1 model does. I’ve never worked in an organisation of Salesforce’s size that is so values-driven and truly believes that business is a power for good.

 

For Salesforce Dublin’s culture, specifically: one of the things I love about walking around our offices is all the fantastic languages that I hear.

We have people from different countries, different backgrounds, different lived experiences, and that diversity is so embraced by everyone. It’s really lovely to be a part of, especially opportunities to celebrate and learn new things about all the different cultures.

 

 

What do you want people to know about Dublin? Why should someone consider a career here?

I am Dublin born and bred, so I am a big Dublin fan! Dublin is the epicenter of innovation and opportunity in Europe, but at the same time it’s a very manageable city; you’re close to the mountains, close to the sea ... it’s all there for you on your doorstep. It’s a wonderful place to live, raise a family, and grow professionally. It's a great environment to build a career.


But besides my personal bias, Ireland has played a huge part in the history of Salesforce. Dublin’s original office was the first location to open outside of the U.S. in 2000, establishing Ireland as a significant hub for our European operations. We’ve been investing in growth here for over two decades, and as a result, the Dublin hub has built the reputation of being a culture creator and a culture keeper for Salesforce.

We are now a strong EMEA sales hub that attracts people from all around Europe, and the rest of the world, who come to build lives and successful careers in technology. If you want the opportunity to grow — it’s here.

 

Many Dublin employees come from other parts of Europe. How does Salesforce support that community?

Salesforce does a wonderful job supporting these transitions. But what’s even more telling is that I see teammates jump in to help these newcomers feel like they belong here. Because many people, like you said, have gone through the experience of relocating themselves, they all want to recreate the warm experience that was created for them.

We organise social hours at the office, teams will take new hires around town after work, inviting them into their homes, telling them the best place to catch a game or grab a bite to eat — we take care of one another. Having both the company’s support with the logistics of moving and your colleagues’ support to build relationships, you can really make the most of the opportunity.

 

Curious about the Dublin Tower? Take a tour of the most sustainable building in Dublin!

 

What advice would you give to someone hesitant to step out of their comfort zone?

There's never a right time. From my own experience, my career trajectory really took off when I made big changes, like taking time away from the workforce to invest in upskilling, changing industries, or putting my hand up for a big role at the same time I was growing my family. I just accepted that no time is going to be perfect.


I believe that by making decisions, taking chances, and being a bit brave, you're moving forward. And even if that's not exactly the right opportunity for you forever, you've done something new. We can always course-correct or do something else in the future.

If you're thinking about blazing your trail to Dublin, I would say: Be brave, lean into it, and take that opportunity on ... because with every new thing you learn something, you build up more skills, you build up more connections. The only bad decision is a decision that you don't make.


You heard it here first: being a Trailblazer means stepping outside your comfort zone. But for your next step, you don’t even need to leave your home. Join Carolan on Thursday, March 7 for Trailblazing Women Dublin, a half-day summit designed to celebrate, inspire, and ignite the Trailblazer in you! Once you’ve saved your spot, check out the open Salesforce roles in Dublin.

We can't wait to meet you!

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