My name is Eoin, I’m 24 and I’m from the best town in the world – Mullingar! I graduated from DCU in 2020 with a BSc in Marketing, Innovation and Technology. If I’m not playing a bit of GAA with my local club Multyfarnham, I can often be found listening to or playing a bit of music, hanging with friends or taking a few snaps of the world around me. I moved to India in November 2021 to begin my role as Jameson Brand Ambassador, and my base city is Mumbai.
Thinking about when you first arrived in the city you are now based, what were your initial thoughts when you arrived?
It wasn’t until the plane actually touched down on Indian soil that I fully believed I would be spending the next almost a year of my life here! I didn’t really know what to expect as I’d never travelled to, or worked in, Asia before. I am part of a team of three Brand Ambassadors in India which is great!
I am now 6-months in my current role and India feels like home. That’s not to say it’s been without its challenges. I’m still getting used to the Mumbai humidity, and while I would pride myself on giving any type of food a go, many times I have found that backfiring on me in India as spice is a key ingredient in most dishes. Travelling on the roads here can sometimes feel like you’re in a real-life game of Mario Kart as well. The welcome I have gotten in India has been massive in helping me settle in. The local team here have a lot of the ‘Serious Character’ we look for on the programme. Communication can be challenging at times but learning some basic phrases in Hindi has helped in this regard.
Thinking about when you first met your team, what was this like?
As it took a while for me to get my visa, I had ample opportunity to get on calls with the team in India to break the ice before my arrival in market. My manager was fantastic in helping get me prepared for my role in market. They brought me through everything from Indian history and culture to brand plans and the tricks of the trade. Once I arrived in India, again, the team here were fantastic in helping me get settled. I arrived in Gurgaon in North India for a week of induction in Pernod Ricard India’s head office, before then moving to Mumbai shortly after where West India’s Pernod Ricard offices can be found.
Thinking about your first month in market, what was your biggest challenge & how did you overcome this?
I think the biggest challenge was probably learning to work so independently. I don’t exactly share a desk with my manager as they are located over 1,000km away from me! The result of this is that I have to work on my own initiative a lot, contacting the different regional marketing managers in West India to help organise account visits, staff trainings, activations, etc.
As it turns out, I very much enjoy this way of working. I can make the role my own, focusing on areas where I can add value to the company, as well as making myself available for the many ad hoc/last minute activities that are common in India.
Looking back now what did you learn from that first month in your new city? What has it taught you about yourself?
I have learned that I learn by doing, and something is only difficult until you’ve actually done it. You’re not always going to nail something on the first try, so I learned to not put so much pressure on myself to know exactly what to do in every aspect of the job. Making mistakes is never a bad thing, as long as you learn from them.
As there is such variety in the Brand Ambassador role, every day I feel I’m learning something new and getting better at things that only a few months ago would have seemed difficult. For example, back in November I could barely name 5 cocktails and now I find myself consulting with bars on what the drinks menu should look like for my bar takeovers!
What is your favourite highlight from the programme so far?
I think just meeting so many incredible people has been the best thing about this job! Whether it’s chatting to consumers at a bar takeover, working with some amazing people in the company itself or working with some seriously talented bartenders, every day I get a chance to be inspired by someone new. Some highlights in particular have included giving input on a set for India’s St Patrick’s Day Jameson advertisement shoot, taking the lead on organising a Jameson Connects event in just my second month, taking part in India Cocktail Week, India Bike Week, and of course getting a chance to visit some of the amazing places India has to offer like the Taj Mahal and the Himalayas.
What are you most looking forward to in the months ahead?
We have recently drawn up the brand plan for the next couple of years in India and there’s some incredible stuff on the way. There’s so much on the horizon that I’m looking forward to being part of and putting my stamp on.
Any tips for anyone applying for the role of Brand Ambassador?
My best tip is be yourself and communicate to the grad team your best skills and how you think they would help you in the role. For example, I was a class rep during my time in college and I enjoyed organising events for classmates. In my application I made sure to note the various activities I was involved in organising over the 4 years of my degree and highlighted what it was about organising these events that I enjoyed so much. Also, any time you’ve worked independently, taken on lots of responsibility or shown that Serious Character Jameson look for are all good things to highlight in your application.