My Day in Google

Can't wait to return :)

So ….. last week I had a great adventure on Tuesday afternoon.

 

Google Ireland HQ

Google Ireland HQ

I was very lucky to be invited to Google HQ by Colm Harling the SRP Global Program Manager and take part in the SRP Business Challenge. Creeper Crawlers are always looking for ways to improve our engagement online and ultimately increase our sales via our website. The Nooglers (new Googlers) were a fabulous group who took time to gain a deep understanding of my company. Each team then presented a range of exciting possibilities for us to take away and implement very quickly.I would highly recommend other companies to participate in these types of activities, if lucky enough to be offered the chance.
The members of the team were deeply knowledgeable, motivated and extremely enthusiastic about genuinely recommending strategies that could assist us in reaching our business goals.

Great day at Google HQ in Dublin

Great day at Google HQ in Dublin

Google has over 4000 employees in their Dublin HQ. The staff are from all over the globe and bring a fantastic cultural mix to our capital. There is an amazing vibe of coolness and funkiness when you walk into the building to register, right from the types of computers that you use to register to get your visitors badge through to the seating arrangements in the vast bustling lobby. Some seats are more like art installations and I have to confess, I wasn’t too sure if I should be sitting on them or not! But as it turned out, I didn’t have to wait long for Colm to come get me.

 

Google Meeting Point

Google Meeting Point

This would look great in CCHQ!

This would look great in CCHQ!

I was brought into their secure development space and I’m telling you folks, the kitchen in this area was spectacular and kitted out with plenty of fruit and then snacks in drawers to beat the band. But as Colm later explained to me, Google are supporting their staff to make healthy snack choices so they decided to keep fruit on display in all kitchens throughout the building and to still have snacks available to employees but to have them stored out of sight! Makes total sense! And what a great initiative. Kudos to Google management.

 

I got to spend about an hour and a half with the team in Google and then Colm brought me to the other buildings to have a look at some of their funky layouts.

One thing I noticed as I walked through the corridors of the various buildings was that everywhere you looked there were lots of different little spaces for sitting / working / reading / being social etc. I asked Colm if employees were allowed to move away from their desks and work and he said ‘yes’ and that they are actually encouraged to use other spaces around the building.

That is brilliant. Something the CCHQ will have some day, fingers crossed 🙂

 

There was also this amazing wallpaper:

Love this wallpaper

Love this wallpaper

 

And this cool wall that lit up when you walked past. I couldn’t resist taking a short video of it! Brilliant.

Outdoor terrace

Outdoor terrace

Last weeks healthy menu

Last weeks healthy menu

They also have a great lunch spot where staff can make their own juices and smoothies etc. Just have a look at what was on the menu last week…… yum.

And when you have your plate full of healthy foods you can enjoy some time outside in the sunshine in one of their roof terraces.

 

 

 

As you go up higher in the buildings the views from the upper floors are amazing. You can see all around Dublin. Infact there are three famous landmarks in this photo, can you list them?

Dublin skyline as seen from Google HQ

Dublin skyline as seen from Google HQ

In one of the buildings there is even a Google shop, I was just thanking my lucky stars that my boys were not with me on this adventure as I know there would have been a battle of wills in the Google shop!

 

And actually at the end of my stay, Colm gifted me a Google mug – which now has pride of place in my kitchen – the boys wouldn’t let me bring it into the office!

Love my Mug! :)

Love my Mug! :)

I have to say a huge thank you to all the fantastic Google team that worked with me. Here is a great pic that Colm took just before I left. I even managed to find a little pic of Colm too……..

Can't wait to return :)

Can’t wait to return :)

The lovely Colm from Google

The lovely Colm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s hoping to get back to another great session with the Googlers soon.

Thanks for a great day folks.

Creeper Crawlers do Mud and Mischief

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Here at Creeper Crawlers HQ we like to work hard and play harder. So following a few hectic weeks we decided to let off some steam by getting covered in muck and showing off our driving skills. 🙂

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For our off road driving session we went to Palmerstown House Estate in Naas, where the offroaddriving.ie instructors showed us the ropes and then let us loose on the forest.

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Creeper Crawlers CEO Ollwyn Moran taking on the challenge

 

We had an amazing days fun, even if we did get told off for speeding and for not knowing our left from our right (okay that was only me). We got to experience the capabilities of the 4×4 jeeps, drive through rivers and over steps as well as through a steep, slippery forest. It was a great way for the team to have some serious fun away from the office and we will definitely be back. Highly recommended!!!

 

 

 

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The Creeper Crawlers Team

After we had been covered in muck and had thoroughly scared the life out of each other we continued the fun back at CC HQ with some pizzas. (Oh! and wine) 🙂

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Off Road Driving

Harrogate Nursery Fair

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Last weekend the Creeper Crawlers team went to England for our first trade show of 2015, the 3 day Harrogate International Nursery Fair and in true Creeper Crawlers style there was a little bit of drama.

After having spent over two hours filling the car to the brim and squeezing in all that we needed for the trade show we were ready to catch the ferry from Dublin to Holyhead. Everything went perfectly until we reached the other side.

As we were preparing to disembark for our 3 hour journey to Harrogate someone kindly pointed out that we had a flat tyre. Naturally panic set in as we had to get the car unloaded to access the spare and reloaded before the boat filled up and headed back to Dublin. With the help of the Stena Line Staff, who we can’t thank enough for their help and Creeper Crawlers own Geoffery, the car was unloaded in no time – only to find no spare tyre.

Apparently on some cars the spare tyre is under the car… whoops…. who knew?? 🙂

 

 

Stena Line staffhelping to get us on the move

Stena Line staff helping to get us on the move.

While all the drama and hard work was happening Creeper Crawlers CEO Ollwyn made sure to lend a helping hand by talking lots of pictures for our blog and facebook 🙂

 

 

Having finally arrived in Harrogate we spent the day setting up our stand, we were lucky enough to have a great location and to be beside our friends from Snooze Shade and Gummee Glove.

We had a great few days at the show, seeing some old friends and making new ones. Most importantly we had phenomenal feedback on our Easy Grip Crawl Suit and our new Premium Bamboo Collection, we even added some new international retailers.

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Creeper Crawlers at Harrogate Nursery Fair

We would be lying if we said it was all hard work though, we somehow managed to squeeze in a bit of “networking” over cocktails as well as attending the Banta Awards where the amazing Jason Manford kept us all entertained.

Why can’t all work outings end with a martini?  <3

After Show Cocktails

After Show Cocktails

IMAGE Mentoring Workshop

image mentoring workshop

Creeper Crawlers MD Ollwyn Moran was invited to speak at a mentoring workshop hosted by IMAGE Magazine and Jean O Sullivan from Enterprise Ireland in Dublin on Wednesday night. This build your business event was aimed at female entrepreneurs, start-ups and businesses interested in growing. Ciara Donlon of Theya Lingerie was invited along with Ollwyn to speak about how they began and were able to grow their businesses to success.

On Wednesday night after we had indulged in too many canapés and the champagne reception, Melanie Morris, Editor in Chief of IMAGE Magazine welcomed everyone and introduced the lovely Jean O’Sullivan of Enterprise Ireland.

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This event was a chance to learn invaluable information about growing a business and Jean spoke of the importance of a good business plan and gave tips which would help to produce a suitable business plan which could be presented for funding or investment purposes. Jean highlighted the need for female entrepreneurs to “realise the value you bring” to your company and described how females tend to be more emotionally involved in their business which acts as the powering force behind their determination to succeed. She also advised that when seeking funding or support to always ask for more than you think you need due to hidden costs that will inevitably arise.

Jean kindly introduced Creeper Crawlers MD Ollwyn up to speak about what she describes as her evolution from the “classroom to the boardroom”. Ollwyn described honestly that in the beginning she had little business acumen, with no idea what a PEST or SWOT was and spoke of how with the support available from entities like Enterprise Ireland she was able to grow the business successfully and is now exporting internationally.

Ollwyn also mentioned other support, such as that available through being based in the Guinness Enterprise Centre and the support provided by Mothercare Ireland who were keen to do what they could for a small female led Irish company.

She also described the challenges or “potholes” that she faced such as being initially turned down for funding, which only made her more determined to succeed and she went on to successfully secure the funding she needed.  Ollwyn ended by giving her top 3 tips …network…network…network. (Advice which we in the office completely agree with- even if it is just for the goodie bags:) )

Following Ollwyn we were delighted to be able to listen to Ciara Donlon from Theya Lingerie, speaking about how she has grown her business and how she successfully got funding and investment. Ciara pointed out some of the challenges she faced, similar to Ollwyn and highlighted the importance of market research when starting a company. She described how the research she had done was invaluable to the brand and that the power of market research should not be underestimated.

sile and Grainne seiogeThis was a great opportunity to meet and chat to some lovely ladies who are at the beginning of their journey in business as well as to offer some advice. We were delighted to meet Grainne and Sile Seoige, who both spoke highly of our product and concept- which is always lovely to hear. Thanks girls 🙂

 

Ollwyn gave a final tip to remember for your business to succeed…

Be FAB- Focus, Achieve, Believe

 

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Tot Model Photo Shoot

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As Creeper Crawlers prepares to launch our new range of developmental clothing for babies the excitement in the office began to build as this could only mean one thing, photo shoot!! The girls were especially buzzing with excitement at the thought of working with babies, real babies 🙂

Once we had our photographer and location finalised we set off on our hunt for tot models. We put out a post on our Facebook page which received a phenomenal response, far more than we could have hoped for, leading to hours and hours spent cooing over all the photographs that had been sent in from so many lovely mums.

Once all the mums had been contacted and we had our 7 babies everything was ready for our photo shoot.

 

On Friday 17th October Creeper Crawlers HQ at the Guinness Enterprise Centre was taken over by tot models and their entourage. Each model brought along excited family members including aunties and grandparents to assist with wardrobe changes and to keep their spirits high.

 

Once all the babies arrived the photographer got started, doing individual and group photos. Each baby got a chance in the spotlight and they all seemed to love the camera.  Even after numerous outfit changes and being surrounded by so many people our beautiful little models were professional, staying in top form and enjoying their day out.

We have no idea why people say never to work with children because we had a ball and can’t wait until the next photo shoot!!

 

We can’t wait to see the final shots of the babies in our new range of developmental clothing and to get using them, so be sure to check our facebook and website for the new images.

 

Thanks to the lovely mums and dads that we met for bringing their babies along and for allowing them to take part in our photo shoot. We had a brilliant day and we hope you did too.

Big thank you to all the mums who got in touch. We will have more opportunities in the future so keep a look out. :):)

 

Business Tips and Goodie Bags

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On the 9th October after a Creeper Crawlers team dinner at ELY Restaurant, the female members of the team were very excited to leave the boys behind and head to the Marker Hotel in Dublin to attend an evening with Liz Earle hosted by IMAGE Magazine.

Before the event got started there was some time to mingle and enjoy the wine and canapés while drooling over the jewellery from Boodles that was on display.

Liz Earle was introduced to the stage by Melanie Morris, Editor in Chief of IMAGE Magazine and along with over 200 other women all desperate to tap this entrepreneurial powerhouse for beauty and business tips we listened as she spoke passionately about her life in the beauty industry and how she built up her business to become the UK’s leading independent beauty brand.

Not only speaking about business, Liz also gave an insight into her personal life and we were amazed to find out that along with running a business empire she is also mother to five children. She explained how she was able to create a balance between family life and business and how she always made sure her family was her priority. Explaining the mutual understanding that she and her business partner had regarding their families and how their time had to be divided between home life and business was what made the relationship and ultimately the business work.

Speaking in more detail about having a successful partnership in business she highlighted the importance of having separate, specific roles “if you have a partner in business make sure they do different things to you”, Liz explained that she focused on the product development side while her partner was more on the business side managing the marketing and finance. Both women brought different strengths and expertise to the company and this is what made it a success.

Liz spoke honestly and also told us how they faced many challenges in the beginning like many businesses. They found that their biggest struggle was being taken seriously as business women in a male dominated industry. Lots of people refused to give them a chance and dismissed them as two little women without a clue. This is what Liz brilliantly refers to as her “pretty woman moment” and that now these people could see they had made a “big mistake!” This served as a reminder for everyone that hard work does pay off and to believe in your business without being deterred.

One of the greatest pieces of info that Liz disclosed was an insight into how she operated in business, with integrity as she stated that “to build a great brand you must act with total transparency.” As well as great beauty and business tips, like any woman she also provided humour and a little gossip when she told us of how she had known Gordon Ramsey back when he was polite and well mannered – how we would love to see that!

When the evening came to an end we were invited to try some of the Liz Earle products and speak with her beauticians regarding skin care routines and how to achieve the best results. After taking full advantage of this we left feeling inspired and more determined, with a fab goodie bag and in a rush to get home and wash our faces :).

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Ollwyn Moran is a trained Neurological Developmental Therapist and the founder of Creeper Crawlers, a revolutionary children’s clothing brand best known for its Easy Grip Crawl Suit. Made from 100% cotton and free of harsh chemical dyes, the patent-pending and award-winning Easy Grip Crawl Suit provides developmental benefits for babies ages 6-24 months. Learn more about Creeper Crawlers here.

#BabyBrain: Rocking and Rolling

Rocking and rolling exercises for babies

The balance system is located deep within the inner ear. A well-developed balance systemforms the basis for healthy brain and body connections.   Stimulation of this system is needed in order for baby to be able to cope successfully with gravity. Activities that cause this stimulation are essential for the inhibition of primitive reflexes and development of balance. They will impact on development of posture, movement, and a sense of position in space, motion, depth and self. Rocking and rolling movements can contribute to the development of balance.   Studies show that infants given regular vestibular stimulation in the first few months of life show accelerated development in motor skills as a result of increased sensory stimulation.

  • Cradle the baby in a cellular blanket with a person holding either end of the blanket. Now sway very gently and slowly from side to side. The slower the better. This slow movement will get the fluid in the inner ear moving which will in turn activate and stimulate the balance system. You may even find that he/she is soothed and calmed and may even fall asleep during this.
  • Put your baby in a seated position holding them securely under their arms. Rock him/her from side to side, gently and slowly and make sure not to go more than a 45 degree angle. This will help to develop the muscles in the neck and shoulders while causing the fluid in the inner ear to move and stimulate the balance system.
  • A variation on this is while in the same position as above rock your baby forward and backwards. Very gently and slowly and not more than a 45 degree angle. You may need to adjust your grip slightly to support baby at the front and back. Be mindful of supporting their head, the aim is to get them to support their own head but if they cannot do this then you will need to, until they can.
  • A floor time rock & roll session  when your baby is lying on his/her back will also provide good stimulation for the balance system and will provide some movements that help to inhibit primitive reflexes. Hold the baby’s hands and gently rock him/her from side to side, the head will turn accordingly.   Do not turn them more than 45 degrees.
  • As your baby gets bigger and older introduce plenty of rough and tumble play, not just for the boys. It gives so much stimulation to the brain and plays a huge role in building your baby’s brain.

Ollwyn Moran is a trained Neurological Developmental Therapist and the founder of Creeper Crawlers, a revolutionary children’s clothing brand best known for its Easy Grip Crawl Suit. Made from 100% cotton and free of harsh chemical dyes, the patent-pending and award-winning Easy Grip Crawl Suit provides developmental benefits for babies ages 6-24 months. Learn more about Creeper Crawlers here