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The best business advice I’ve ever been given? ‘There should be no surprises’

The Lighter Side: Derek Scully, head of corporate affairs at Energia Group

Derek Scully: ‘The urgency with which we need to address the climate crisis can’t be overstated.’

Derek Scully: ‘The urgency with which we need to address the climate crisis can’t be overstated.’


What businessperson do you most admire?

I’ve been fortunate to work with some brilliant people and it is their qualities, as opposed to their achievements, that I find most admirable. Their clarity of thought and vision, communication, empathy and drive, have all had a very positive influence on my approach and they are qualities that are evident throughout the Energia Group. 

What is your guilty pleasure?

It’s probably coffee and not because of the amount I drink but I’m quite fussy about what I drink. Thankfully there are now excellent coffee roasters and coffee shops all across Ireland, and it has made the task of sourcing excellent coffee much easier.

How do you unwind?

I spend time with my wife and children. We have two young children and getting out, sharing new experiences with them, and seeing their reaction is an incredible tonic for whatever else might be going on. 

How much money is in your wallet?

I’m a card person but there’s usually €20 in there for emergencies.

The last book you read?

The Powerful and the Damned by Lionel Barber. The book combines a behind the scenes account of some key moments in global business and politics in the last 15 years with insights into some of the people involved. It was a fascinating and compelling read.

What is the best business advice you’ve ever been given?

“There should be no surprises.” This was one of the first pieces of business advice I received in my early career and is the one I find myself coming back to most often.

Who is the most famous person in your contacts list?

I couldn’t name one at the risk of offending others.

How do you manage your work/life balance?

With quite a bit of effort and the incredible support of my wife.    

The last film you watched?

It was the Lego Movie 2. I can’t claim credit for picking it but really enjoyed it.

What is your favourite possession?

We are building a house at the moment and for all the time and effort that has gone into the process, it will be my favourite possession . . . soon.

What social media do you use?

I’m a relatively late convert to social media but now regularly use LinkedIn for work and Twitter for a mix of everything.

If money were no object, what would your fantasy purchase be?

Manchester United; no explanation needed.

What is the first website you look at every morning?

The Irish Times for the latest news and then the ePaper app for a quick read through the day’s paper. I also rely on news alerts and Twitter throughout the day to bring me to other media.

Are you an early bird or a night owl?

A night owl.

If you were Taoiseach for a day, what would you do?

The urgency with which we need to address the climate crisis can’t be overstated. I would focus on ensuring Ireland’s climate targets are translated into implementable actions that can be understood and acted on by homes, businesses and communities across Ireland.

What’s your favourite place in Dublin and why?

I grew up in Dublin and went to school in Glasthule, it’d be hard to beat a walk on the seafront with an ice-cream.

Anything you would like to plug?

Energia Group is at the forefront of the energy transition in Ireland, and we’re focused on delivering new, innovative, more sustainable solutions for our customers’ energy needs. From large-scale renewable electricity projects that will decarbonise our energy system to in-home solutions available in our smart home store. We’re committed to helping achieve Ireland’s 2030 climate action targets and ensuring our customers and communities can benefit from this.