Big thank you from

Jenny Monroe talks to Joanne Mackey

Joanne MackeyJOANNE Mackey, 27, is Business Manager at LaganView Enterprise Centre Ltd - a social economy organisation with a voluntary board of Directors the Old Warren community.

Joanne, who lives in Banbridge with her Fiancé and daughter Chloe, 3, joined LaganView in June 2007 as the newly appointed centre manager. After graduating from Jordanstown with a distinction in her Masters in Communication, Advertising and Public Relations (CAP) Joanne worked for a brief spell as a Learner Support Worker in Banbridge. Following this she began her work with the Social Economy sector as part of an EU Funded project providing IT Support and Consultancy as well as for the private and public sector. Her passion and enthusiasm for this has been a direct result of her appointment to this position.

I have an early start of 6.45am each morning. I get myself and my daughter ready and then I drop her off at nursery before going to Lisburn for a 8.30am start.

The first thing I do is to check the diary for bookings. LaganView provides appropriate community facilities to local groups and residents as well as providing workshop, retail type and office units to attract, support and develop businesses to be competitive and invest in the Old Warren.

I will update the digital signage board which provides information for the people using the centre. It is important that this is updated every morning.

My role is really varied but I love it because no day is the same. What I really enjoy is the contact with the public. My areas of expertise include: marketing and communications and IT consultancy and mentoring for small business. I am also the first point of contact for people interested in using our facilities. I will be involved right from the start and if catering or any other additional services are required I will make sure it is all organised.

I spend a lot of time in my office unless I have a meeting or am making sure the rooms are set up for the different users. I check emails, do invoices, sort out the website and work on the newsletter and brochures. I do enjoy getting to branch out into the community and organising events. At the moment I am heavily involved in trying to attract business clients too - this is where my PR and marketing skills come in handy. We have made a big push on making health and education links and joining up with the local colleges and health agencies. I have to be creative and think of ways to boost the centre.

Every quarter I have a board meeting with the Directors at the Centre and update them all on what has been going on. I will also put ideas to them and am appreciative of their advice and feedback. One of the Directors shares an office with me so there is always someone on hand for me to speak to about issues affecting the centre.

We are trying very much to let out our workspace to nurture an enterprise culture to invest in the estate. If we can branch out into the public and private sector, then in turn the local community will benefit.

I finish up around 4.30pm and then I go to get my daughter. I put the tea on and settle in to the evening with my family. I always try to squeeze a visit to the gym too. This gives me some 'me' time.

I am very passionate about my work. It's great that I am given the flexibility to develop my role at LaganView - it is indeed very rewarding.

Ulster Star