Our People: Emer Connellan | KPMG | AE
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Emer Connellan

Emer Connellan

Meet Emer Connellan: Accountant, scuba diver and enjoys a good brunch

Meet Emer Connellan: Accountant, scuba diver and enjoys a good brunch

It was my Mam – (my mother) - who inspired me to consider a career in accounting. She built a very successful career for herself as a partner in an accountancy firm while also being a super Mam to our family and the rock we all lean on. The seed of an idea took root. I made up my mind at an early age that I wanted to emulate. I am pleased to have followed in her footsteps and joined the ranks of women in leadership positions. KPMG was the ideal choice for me because I was looking to broaden my expertise in audit, work with leading brands across the globe and expand both my professional and social network.

I joined KPMG Lower Gulf in 2016. I reveled in the opportunity to explore a vibrant new city, Dubai, and my ethnically diverse workplace allowed me to experience a glorious mélange of cultures. Our team is a rich tapestry of over 23 nationalities, so I am continuously learning about different traditions and customs. I have made new friends from Australia, South East Asia and Canada! We all work together, from the most junior employee all the way through to the partners with their wealth of knowledge. It is a pleasure assisting the junior members of the team in their personal development and seeing them grow to senior associates who can lead audit teams. I feel everyone has something to learn and something to teach, and it is a very collaborative environment. KPMG also facilitated a smooth relocation.

I’ve had the chance to travel to the US for work and interact with teams across the world. It has provided me with further insight into dynamic audit environments in different regions, and imbued in me a spirit of open-mindedness and adaptability. KPMG in the Lower Gulf has such a wide range of clients from local UAE family groups, to owner managed businesses, to leading global multinational companies. The vast scope of our client base means that I get exposure to numerous different types of business models, as I witness companies’ development and growth in one of the world’s fastest-changing cities.

It is hard work, but I ensure I’ve factored in that all-important time for my friends and family. Dubai is a city of infinite possibilities, although I do miss Ireland- especially my Mam’s cooking! I unwind by taking a lazy stroll on the beach or relaxing by the pool. Cuddling up with a good book with twists and unexpected turns makes for a cozy night in- I enjoy my thrillers and mystery dramas. At the moment my favorite author is Shari Lapena and I have just finished reading two of her books “The Couple Next Door” and “A Stranger in the House”.

On weekends you’ll find me socializing with my friends and tracking down the latest hot spot for Friday brunch.
I have also done a number of scuba diving courses and have been lucky to be able to go diving across the world in places like Thailand, the Great Barrier Reef and the Galapagos islands. I spent a number of weeks traveling around South America and did a five day trek up to Machu Picchu. I was quite unprepared as it was a last minute decision. At one point when we were at extreme altitude above 6000m, I got awful altitude sickness and was desperate to turn back. I persevered, however- the feeling of achievement when I completed the trek was glorious!

I am appreciative of KPMG’s supportive environment which has enabled me to succeed – my team has always been there to bounce ideas off and share the victories with. That’s what counts. Hard work pays off in the long term. Although we can get caught up with the pressure of deadlines, it affords me a sense of deep satisfaction to look back and see the blood, sweat and tears reaping rewards.