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Read all about Jameson Graduate Life

Cillian Mulligan

From Campus Life to the Corporate World

Hi folks, I’m Cillian Mulligan, a Business Commerce Graduate of NUIG. I specialised in Marketing as part of my final year and I also spent a semester studying in BSB Dijon, France as part of the International Experience programme.

My new role is to represent Jameson Irish Whiskey in Bangalore and East India as a Brand Ambassador. I completed four weeks of extensive training on all things whiskey at the end of the summer and I’ve been in market since mid-August. Put simply, my role is to educate Indian consumers and bartenders about Irish whiskey and create advocacy for Jameson through activations and events. This varies from small scale tastings to taking over large festivals or other events to build brand awareness and engagement with consumers.

Why did you apply for the Jameson International Graduate Programme?

The thing that attracted me most to the role was the opportunity to develop my own skills by moving abroad and testing myself in a new culture. I also love the social aspect of the job as it is mostly field-based and as cliché as it sounds, no two days are ever the same.

Going from ‘student’ to ‘employee’ can be a big transition. What challenges did you face (and how did you overcome them)?

The responsibilities of a full-time job can be daunting at first but when you enjoy your work and are passionate about it, it becomes much easier and second nature over time.

What was the most surprising part of the application process for you?

After feeling nervous in the build up to the assessment days, I suppose what surprised me most was how at ease I felt once things kicked off. Everyone from the receptionist to the managers, and even the other candidates, were really sound and wanted you to perform to your best.

How did you decide this was the path for you?

I had heard about the programme through word of mouth and started researching on the Jameson Grad Programme website to learn more about the role. After watching nearly every ‘day in the life’ video on the programmes YouTube channel of various Brand Ambassadors, I knew this was my dream role. I then went to the Grad Fair in the Bailey Allen and had a chat with the guys at the Jameson stand. They told me all about the application process and I got to work making my application video.

Have you any tips for a student interested in pursuing this career path?

So one tip would be to start building your own personal brand to become the most suitable person for the role of a Jameson Brand Ambassador. Travel and get as much experience working across different sectors and cultures, say ‘yes’ more and get involved with societies and fundraising for charities, keep on any sports or hobbies you have, take an interest in marketing and, develop your own social media accounts.

What advice would you give to a student making an application to a similar role?

What really helped me was reaching out to past or current Brand Ambassadors on the programme to ask for advice. I couldn’t believe how helpful they all were to a complete stranger! I suppose some of the best advice I received was to be yourself. As generic as that might sound, it’s very true. They are not looking for a hyped up/fake version of yourself, rather your genuine, best-self.

What’s next for you?

I hope to continue with this programme for the full three years whether that be in India or a different market. Most graduates stay in one market for first year of the programme and then rotate to a new market for their last two years. It all depends on the market needs and if you would like a new challenge personally. After that, I’d love to apply for a role within the broader parent company of Pernod Ricard whether that be in innovation or marketing, abroad or in Ireland, I haven't quite figured that out yet!

Check out my LinkedIn if you want to get in touch or find out anything at all about the programme, I’d love to help out any way I can. (linkedin.com/in/cillian-mulligan-693a78131)