We sit down with Kyle Hayes as the Limerick hurling team celebrates its third All-Ireland title in a row. “Limerick is one of the most exciting places to be right now, the atmosphere is palpable,” says HR Officer and Limerick hurler Kyle Hayes, as we interview him for our #PeopleFirst series.
He is settling back into his day job after the high that was the iconic ‘three-in-a-row’ All-Ireland Hurling Final. Limerick secured their first three-in-a-row senior hurling title, after an intense final against Kilkenny at Croke Park in Dublin. Almost one million watched at home, and a further 80,000 took to the stands in Dublin.
“This year was the first year, since 2018, that we could have a proper homecoming. At the end of the day, we play for our county, our fans, our families, and ourselves, it’s only fitting that we celebrate together,” says Kyle.
And what a celebration it was. Thousands gathered on the streets of Limerick and at TUS Gaelic Grounds for the Limerick hurlers’ homecoming. Plenty of Kirby colleagues were there to cheer them on.
Kyle worked in the Kirby HR department as an intern while at college and joined us full time after graduating from his Business Studies degree at the University of Limerick in 2020. “Kirby is an incredibly supportive workplace; the directors are approachable and are all willing to develop and train you to be the best you can be. They are there for me on and off the field,” says Kyle.
Sports psychology and business have strong synergies and that’s something that he brings to work every day. “In hurling you never leave a team member behind; you are one team and work together to achieve a common goal. Kirby has the same mindset; we wear one jersey. Working in the HR team I know that the work I do prepares our team to put their best foot forward on our projects. The work that goes on behind the scenes at Limerick GAA is definitely comparable to what I see at work, as our site teams head out to the field with the backing of people like me behind the scenes. At Kirby we look after our team,” adds Kyle.
Kyle is incredibly passionate about promoting good mental health in the construction sector. “A lot of men see talking about their struggles as a weakness, it’s not. The sooner you turn to someone and say that you’re not okay, the sooner people can come together and support you. That’s what a team does,” says Kyle.
Last year he shared his tips for maintaining good mental health as part of the Lighthouse Club Construction Industry Charity’s Help Inside the Hard Hat campaign. The charity provides a 24/7 safety net for all construction workers and their families in the UK and Ireland. People can contact the Construction Industry Helpline on 0345 605 1956 (UK) or 1800 939 122 (ROI).