Alan O’Neill


From Financial Services, FMCG, Hospitality, Industrial, IT, Motor, Retail, Telcos, Tourism to Travel and others and with 30+ years of front line board level experience, Alan has lots of no-nonsense expertise with lots to say.

Facilitating multi-million euro businesses to achieve amazing results he knows what it takes to drive change right through a business – from top to bottom… and front to back. Up to 2004, Selfridges for example was a sleeping giant – but in recent years has achieved two significant accolades it’s officially the best department store in the world… and is one of the most profitable department store in the world (per m²).

His retail and hospitality experience ranges from food to fashion… luxury to mass… single to multiple site… down-town to travel retail… in Europe, UK, Russia, the Middle East and Far East.

But it’s certainly not just about retail and hospitality. His B2B experience includes international giants like Glanbia, Intel, Kizad, Lavazza, Lufthansa, Moet Hennessy, Nissan, Pepsi, St Gobain,  Symantec, Vodafone, Xerox, etc., where he has brought discipline, rigour and common sense to change projects.

Voice of the Customer


Alan has a reputation for making the complex simple… for being down-to-earth and practical… with a commercial focus that brings everything back to the customer. He’s the strong voice of the customer! So whether the issues are about Change, Vision, Strategy or Structure… or High performance Culture… Leadership… or Customer Service – Alan has stories, models and real-life case studies that will adapt.

It is this unrivalled business acumen that has seen Alan facilitate and speak at conferences in several countries and conduct master-classes with C-level executives. He asks hard and uncomfortable questions, e.g. How do you renew culture and get it ready for emerging global challenges? How do you overcome cynicism and resistance to change? How do you ensure accountability and overcome complacency? How do you build a customer-service culture to drive sales?

Purchase Alan’s book
Dare to Change
Renew your Culture
Think Customer
Business Results

With every engagement, Alan takes time to understand the brief, the challenges, the expected messaging… and builds empathy before meeting his audience. Energetic, passionate and engaging… he will leave your audience with thoughts and challenges – that are guaranteed to provoke, inspire and give hope. He is also a competent conference chair – helping to get the structure, style and content matched to the expected outcome.


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Here are some of the great iconic brands that Alan has had the privilege to work with:

  • Acorn

  • AIB

  • Airplus

  • BoI

  • Future Finance

  • GAM Investment Managers

  • New Ireland

  • NIB

  • NIIB

  • Northern

  • PTSB

  • Ulster

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    • Breedon Cement

    • Errigal Contracts

  • St.Gobain

    • Ballygowan

    • Braun

    • Britvic

    • Bulmers

    • Donnelly

    • Fissler

    • Glanbia

    • Grants

    • Lavazza

    • Moet Hennessy

    • Tayto

    • T&G Woodware

    • Baxter Storey

    • Dalata

    • Gleneagle Group

    • Irish Hotel Federation

    • LVA

    • Monart

    • Ramada Dubai

    • Selfridges Restaurants

    • VFI

    • ADPC

    • Airtricity

    • Design & Display

    • EDF Energy

    • Equilume

    • IMI-CCI

    • Kizad

    • LC Packaging

    • ORM Kitchens

    • Scottish Power

    • Texaco

    • Vonroll

    • Xerox

    • Ford

    • Jardines

    • Leaseplan

    • Mercedes

    • Nissan

    • Renault

    • Subaru

    • TMD Friction

    • Chartered Inst Accountants

    • DNG

    • Fine & Country

    • Getty Images

    • Helen Turkington


    • Landbell

      Law Society

    • Sherry Fitz

    • Wilmington plc

    • Ann Summers

    • AWear

    • Blarney

    • Brown Thomas

    • Cash & Carry Kitchens

    • Chalhoub

    • Circle K


    • deGrisogono

    • Dubai Duty Free

    • Dunnes Stores

    • Eason’s

    • EU Promotions

    • Fortnum & Mason


    • Jimmy Choo

    • Karstadt

    • Leroy Merlin (Adeo Group)

    • Life Pharmacies

    • Mace

    • M&S

    • Musgrave

    • Rustan’s

    • Selfridges

    • Spar

    • Specsavers

    • Superquinn

    • TekZone

    • XL

    • BT Telecom

    • Clavis Insights

    • Converge

    • Dassault 3d Systemes

    • Equant/Orange

    • Intel

    • IT Alliance

    • Lucent

    • Paymentsense

    • Symantec

    • Touch Corp

    • Triangle

    • Vodafone

    • YoyoWallet

    • Failte Irl

    • Aer Lingus

    • DAA International

    • Eirebus

    • Eucon

    • IEC

    • Irish Ferries

    • Lufthansa

    • Sealand

    • UPS

    • ARI

    • Central Bank

    • DAA International

    • DVLA UK

    • Enterprise Boards

    • European Chemicals Agency (ECHA)

    • Nat Children’s Hospital

    • UN (CTBTO)

    The experience

    In his unique and compelling manner, Alan O’Neill brings alive one of today’s most provocative subjects for contemporary business leaders.

    Alan convinces all businesses that they are as ‘unique as their fingerprints’, but treat their customers just like everyone else. Anyone can copy your strategy but no one can copy your culture – its high time you mobilised and energised these points of difference through the customer experience.

    Rene Carayol MBE, International Keynote Speaker, Author and Leadership Guru | Author of Spike

    At Ann Summers, I have worked with Alan over a number of years, and highly value his expertise in creating a future-facing retail business that moves us from a transactional, profit driven model to a purpose-driven brand, inspired and led by our customers.  Alan helped us to see that we need to surprise and delight our customers, to attract new customers to our brand based on great product and experiences whether they shop with us in store, online or at a party.

    Jacqueline Gold CBE, CEO | Ann Summers

    ‘Customer Experience’ is indeed the new battleground and differentiator in this digital world. As a highly experienced Change Agent and Speaker, Alan inspires and challenges audiences with his practical business models and stories. The Selfridges Story is just one that brings all of the concepts to life and resonates with busineses of all types, B2B and B2C.

    Cosimo Turroturro, Managing Director | Speaker’s Associates

    Alan is one of the most brilliant minds in department store retailing today. Before engaging him for Rustan’s for a short-term project, I heard nothing but good things on the work he did for Selfridges. Having met him in Rome in 2015, I was impressed by the breadth and depth of his knowledge on two critical areas: company culture and the customer experience.

    Donnie Tantoco, President | Rustan Commercial Corporation, Philippines

    In my 35 years retail experience Alan is top of the league. I was also very fortunate to be mentored by him for sometime. A fantastic experience. If he offers this to you then you only need two words. Yes please!

    Peter Larkin, Senior Operations Manager | Alshaya - Egypt

    Alan O’Neill has been an inspiration, not only in business advice through articles that he has written in the Sunday Independent, but also as a non-executive director to our not-for-profit charity (County Kildare Local Employment Service) based throughout Co. Kildare.

    Clodagh Judge, Chief Operations Officer | County Kildare Local Employment Service

    Talk to Alan:

    +353 1 564 9727    |    alan.oneill@kara.ie

    Get in Touch