ASA launches new ‘Experts In Their Field’ podcast series
Episode 1: ASA President Anne Marie Butler interviews Richard Hayden, MD, Hayden Turfcare
30th September 2020: Today, the Agricultural Science Association (ASA) has released the first episode in a podcast series which will explore the career paths, challenges and ambitions of leading graduates of Agricultural Science. The ASA ‘Experts In Their Field’ podcast series, sponsored by Ulster Bank, will be a monthly podcast featuring prominent voices in the Irish and international agri-food industry.
In the first episode, ASA President, Dr. Anne Marie Butler interviews Richard Hayden, Sportsturf consultant and MD of Hayden Turfcare who design, install and manage high quality natural and synthetic sports turf surfaces. This year, Hayden Turfcare successfully installed its 450th pitch across the globe.
Coming from a strong agricultural background in Graiguenamanagh Co. Kilkenny, Richard shares his experiences of the first principles acquired from his BAgrSc Degree from UCD and his advice for graduates forging a degree in the agri-food industry.
“Ag Science is such a broad programme but it gives you a taste of a lot of things. The vast majority of subjects I studied I actually use on a regular basis. The degree teaches you to go back to first principles– you are never going to be an expert at everything but it will mature you enough to be able to ask the right questions and know where to find the answer. Getting the practical experience is also very important. You cannot just walk out of university and expect to become an expert. What is important is your experience – the learnings from the things that didn’t work as well as those that did work. Every job you do you learn something new”, he said.
Hayden Turfcare has worked on projects in 52 countries and in the podcast, Richard brings listeners on a world tour as he discusses his experiences from the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, to Poland-Ukraine in 2011 and the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil.
Richard also shares his advice on running a successful business and the importance of being surrounded by good people. “It is so important to know that you’re not going to be good at everything and to hire someone who is. Surrounding yourself with good people is crucial, even if it costs you a bit more. Treating people well is also really important. It is hard as a small business owner to get a good work-life balance but it is something we are always trying to do”, he added.
Richard and his team are proven in the development of state-of-the-art stadium pitches including hybrid reinforcement technology, pitch cooling and heating systems, irrigation and shade management systems. In the podcast, Richard also highlights some recent achievements in the area of natural turf equestrian surfaces and the importance of equine to his business.
Eddie Cullen, Managing Director, Commercial Banking Division, Ulster Bank said:
“Ulster Bank is a strong supporter of the agri-food sector and we’re delighted to sponsor the ASA’s new ‘Experts In Their Field’ podcast series, presented by ASA President and Senior Agricultural Manager with Ulster Bank, Anne Marie Butler. The series is a must-listen-to for anyone who’s interested in this sector, and particularly those who are considering a career in this area. In Ulster Bank we’re working with our agri-food business customers across the country every day, listening to their needs and lending to them, as we champion potential.”
The new ASA ‘Experts In Their Field’ Podcast is available to download now on the ASA website Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play and Sound Cloud. New episodes of the monthly series will be available on the last Wednesday of every month.