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16 Jan 2022

SPECIAL FEATURE: Denis encourages more firms to avail of skillnet support

DS Environmental Services will celebrate a quarter of a century in business next year

Denis Sheridan

Denis Sheridan of DS Environmental Services

A Donegal business owner who has benefitted from the assistance and training provided by Tech North West Skillnet is encouraging more companies within the region to reach out to the state agency for support.
Denis Sheridan, who owns DS Environmental Services based in Kilmacrennan, will celebrate a quarter of a century in business next year.
“We've been involved with Skillnet now for a good number of years and the training we have received from them has been extremely beneficial to me and to my members of staff,” Mr Sheridan said.
“I'm also part of Skillnet’s steering group and happy to be involved. It's great to see other companies similar to my own availing of that training as well.
“I can’t emphasise enough the importance of the training Skillnet has given us. We wouldn't have been able to access the training we got financially had it not been for Skillnet,” he added.
“I would imagine that more companies are looking at that type of training. There are a lot of companies whose business has dropped during the pandemic and they are finding that they might have more time to do the training. Also, they see more value in it in preparation for when things pick up again. I can't emphasise how important it is for companies to avail of that.”

Smacht programme
Mr Sheridan has recently signed up for the year long Smacht programme for business owners that covers leadership, marketing and sales, finance and succession.
“The programme is being delivered by Pádraic Ó Máille and he certainly seems to know what he's at,” he added.
“The online sessions are held every second week - it's a collection of business owners who get together on a Wednesday morning for an hour.
“To date, we're getting to know each other, and we are talking about the challenges and difficulties we've been facing as a result of the pandemic.
“We’ve also discussed the wins that we’ve had during the pandemic. It’s still early days and I'm still settling into it. But I do think it is going to be a very valuable programme and that has come through Skillnet as well.
“There’s a very good representation of business owners here in the North West taking part.”
Denis added: “I couldn't say enough about Skillnet and Siobhan Grant. Siobhan worked extremely hard to put Skillnet together here in Donegal and it is really a credit to her.
“She named her business very, very well because she is good at connecting people and connecting companies with each other.”
he added: “She's done a fabulous job along with Elaine Rodger of Skillnet - they've worked hard at putting it together and are still working hard keeping it together.”
Tech Northwest Skillnet is the multi-sector business network for companies of all sizes in the north west focused on technology and innovation.
Established in 2011, the network is supported by Letterkenny Institute of Technology.

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