Our Community: Lee-Anne Bond
Lee-Anne Bond has been working with Troy Packaging for almost a year. Troy Packaging are based in ENGINE, Limerick.
Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m from South Africa and last November my partner and I emigrated to Ireland. We started off living in Cork, but I couldn’t find any work opportunities. I managed to secure an interview in Limerick and that’s how I started working for Troy Packaging. We moved to Limerick and stayed in an Air Bnb in Caherconlish and have now ended up becoming permanent residents there.
Coming from a city in South Africa, being able to live in the countryside and working in Limerick has been an eye-opener. We have never got to experience things like beautiful roads, in South Africa, it can be dangerous. We can get everything we want here within a 10km radius, it’s really amazing.
First of all, you have different people working in the space with all types of skillsets. This is great for collaborating on certain projects.
Could you tell us about Troy Packaging and your role?
Troy Packaging is, of course, a packaging company, which is one of the leading innovative industries in Ireland. I’ve taken over a maternity leave accounts role in Troy Packaging, but she will be back in August. Then I will be branching out to the sales side, which is really exciting!
We base a lot of our work in Limerick, Kerry and Tipperary, however, over the next few months, we will be going to be concentrating on branching out to other counties. We do a lot of work in Dublin but are hoping to branch out further. We do very specialised packaging, so we have a great niche - we’re not just your average packaging company. We have a lot of exciting projects coming up, so we’re hoping to expand our sales team, as well as develop our social media over the next few months and work on increasing our visibility.
What are the main benefits of a co-working space?
First of all, you have different people working in the space with all types of skillsets. This is great for collaborating on certain projects. Troy Packaging isn’t a huge company, so it’s nice to be around lots of people. It’s great for connecting, chatting and expanding your network. A co-working space is also great for saving costs!
Everything you need is nearby and you don’t need to commute a huge amount. For us, it’s only a ten-minute drive to Limerick city, which has everything we need.
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
For us, coming into ENGINE, we were a very manual company. Everything was done on paper and in handwriting. We’ve just recently implemented a great new system. We all sat together as a small company and put our heads together to create the business processes we need. We’re ironing those out really nicely, without being too rigid and allowing for the flexibility we need as a small business. For me, this collaboration within the company has been one of our greatest achievements. As a personal achievement, I would have to say fitting in and working with a new team.
Was there a reason you chose to emigrate to Ireland?
I had been to Ireland before, as my cousin lives here. I think the people are amazing and the countryside is beautiful. When I came here the first time to visit my cousin, I fell in love with the place and thought that one day I’m going to live here.
I have a lot more time to do things I enjoy, like exercising first thing in the morning or taking a walk around the city with my partner after work. You can work hard and play hard.
What benefits are there to living and working in the Midwest?
Everything you need is nearby and you don’t need to commute a huge amount. For us, it’s only a ten-minute drive to Limerick city, which has everything we need. We did experience Cork as well, which was really big, but we found it quite hectic trying to get around.
In the Midwest, it’s been a lot easier and calmer. There isn’t a huge disparity between the countryside and the city here and they flow into one another, which is extremely convenient. Work-wise Limerick is great. Our warehouse is just around the corner and a lot of our clients are really close by as well. It’s extremely convenient.
Do you feel like you have a better work/life balance in the Midwest?
Absolutely. First of all, you don’t have to spend hours and hours in traffic every morning, which is what I did in South Africa. Now, it only takes half an hour max on public transport for me to get to work. I have a lot more time to do things I enjoy, like exercising first thing in the morning or taking a walk around the city with my partner after work. You can work hard and play hard.
It’s so peaceful and beautiful in the Midwest countryside and totally different from living in an Urban area.
What advice would you give someone if they are considering moving to the Midwest?
We’ve seen a huge difference in living costs here. When we were in Cork, it was very expensive. I would advise looking for accommodation on the outskirts of Limerick, as your rental or housing prices will be cheaper. It’s also so peaceful and beautiful in the Midwest countryside and totally different from living in an Urban area. Public transport is also really accessible and affordable across the Midwest, making it easy to get around.
To learn more about Troy Packaging, check out their website here.