OCBs is a sandwich bar and coffee shop in Dublin’s Clanwilliam Court on Lower Mount Street. OCBs offers a wide range of breakfast and lunch options, including eat-in, take-away and delivery. Established in January 1993, the firm employs 6 staff.  The company has recently re-branded and has a comprehensive online presence.

The owner, Mary O’Connor, was a participant on the ManagementWorks Business Growth programme.

Why participate in the programme

Mary had considered undertaking a programme but was precluded by the cost. Mary was attracted by the value of the offering from ManagementWorks and by the practical nature of the proposed programme as she felt that the business had potential to grow.

Experience of the programme to date

Mary has found that the course content is very comprehensive and focused on the needs of her business. She finds the interaction between the participants to be very important and has been surprised and delighted at the openness and willingness of participants to share their experiences. Advice can be sought and is willingly and constructively given. Mary finds that the opportunity to stand back from the business and to examine its operation in a regular and structured manner has given her new insights into what is possible for the business and herself.

Impact on their business

Mary has found that participating on the programme has given her a new level of energy for her business. The isolation which many small business owners feel had been reduced by participation in  a group of owners who face very similar issues although the specifics of their businesses are quite different. Mary has found the mentoring to be very useful and supportive, although she would prefer slightly longer mentoring sessions than are currently available. Mary now takes more control of the mentoring session in terms of what she would like to get from it and how she would like to use the time.

Message for other business owners

Mary is very positive about the programme and recommends it to her business acquaintances. Mary also appreciates that Government support is being made available to small business owners. Mary feels that taking the time away from the business to examine it in a more detached fashion is critically important as it takes the business owner out of their own vacuum or bubble and lets them see possibilities which would not otherwise arise.

ManagementWorks Programme


Mary O'Connor