The Trinity MBA Blog

Starting up my own business with The Trinity MBA as a launchpad

/ by Edel Mc Cabe

Edel Mc Cabe is a Full-Time MBA Alumna who graduated from The Trinity MBA in August 2020. She talks about her experience of The Trinity MBA, setting up her own business and how the skills she acquired during the MBA that helped make it happen.

Edel McCabe 1

Edel McCabe

The Trinity MBA was undoubtedly one of the best decisions and investments I have taken in my life. I love education and firmly believe continuous learning is vital to our careers and our development. The MBA came for me at a time when I was at a crossroads. After numerous years in the Marketing & PR arena and working in the C-Suite level, I was privileged to have been awarded All-Ireland Business Woman of the Year, 2012, Network Ireland. But, I still wanted something more. I wanted a bigger picture, I wanted more career and life options, I wanted to discover my next step. I believed the Trinity MBA would provide this and it did.

The MBA is all encompassing. It challenges you at every turn and every level. It heightens your skills and develops skills you never even knew you had. I loved working with my classmates from all different backgrounds that I never even imagined or would never have had the privilege to work with from Doctors, to Physios, to Pharmacists, to Operational Managers, to Telecommunications experts and Entrepreneurs. The cultural diversity on the MBA was extraordinary, although working with many different nationalities in my career the spectrum on the MBA was truly unique.  

The MBA teaches you to think with a 360 degree business perspective, you look at business from angles you never even knew existed. This skill can rarely be taught, but The Trinity MBA manages to do it effortlessly. The thought leaders and professional faculty members you have at your disposal are best in class not only in Europe but in the World. These leaders task you with business problems from real world companies and social enterprise projects (SEPs), allowing you to work on a consultancy basis applying your learning and business acumen in practical, tangible ways - that are then challenged and critiqued to make sure you truly are providing solutions and results that are more than just words on paper. It is inspiring and truly worthwhile when you later see the actions taken by companies and SEPs based on your hard work and research, implementing your recommendations for the betterment of the business or SEP.


The Trinity MBA Programme Overview

Since I was young, I have always dreamed of running my own business and the MBA gave me the additional skills I was missing. The Trinity MBA fosters talent, provides support and avenues that I would never have had access too. It truly does open doors that no other course could ever do. A major intangible asset the MBA offers is the support and access to the Alumni Network, Faculty Members and Staff. And, this is something that grows and grows as you develop as an MBA candidate and MBA Graduate.

During our second and third term, I was looking at the job market and talking to the dedicated MBA Careers team on my next step. We were afforded great opportunities to visit and talk to companies such as Google, Hubspot, EY and many more. This network and support really allowed me to thoroughly investigate my options. The more I talked and researched, the more I realised that it was a “now or never” scenario for me and so Effective Marketing Communications Agency was born (EMC Agency).

Download Our Brochure

During my career working in sports sponsorship and NGO Fundraising, I have had the pleasure of working with companies, big and small and from all walks of life including Paddy Power, Bank of Ireland, Marks & Spencer, Coolmore Stud, Ryanair, Specsavers, to the K Club and many more. Throughout my career, I also actively worked in Business Networks including Chambers of Commerce, Network Ireland and others to help businesses work together and achieve their goals and ambitions. These experiences have taught me invaluable skills regarding people and client relationships. They also allowed me to look at business from all sides, piecing together how companies can reach their audience in the most effective and efficient way and in a way that truly counts, which is at the core of what EMC Agency does. We make sure our customers are on the right frequency at the right time with the right content.


2-1Visiting HubSpot HQ, Dublin City Centre

The Trinity MBA enabled me to apply my practical business experience to my own customers and have the confidence to know I could achieve results that mattered for them. The MBA taught me how to connect my clients to their customers with emotion, passion, and genuineness. To create tools, campaigns and plans to ensure their brand, their business is the only choice for their customers. Creativity and uniqueness are vital to any business in today’s competitive world. Marketing, PR & digital creations need to be on point, on message and connected to their core values. The MBA helped me devise business plans, operational structures and financial investments to set-up EMC Agency and deliver this.

After only eight months in operation the business is going from strength to strength as I have built revenue streams to support the business in an on-going basis as I work with companies once again from all walks of life from estate agents, water plant filtration, artists, executive coaching, insurance brokers, mental health support and many more. As I look to the future, I look at renting premises and employing more staff as I set true roots down for EMC Agency. Setting up my own business was the best and only decision for me, and I could not have done this without Trinity MBA as a foundation and launch pad.


4-1Google Talk at Google HQ, Dublin City Centre

My advice to future and current MBA candidates would be one of “enjoy the journey”. The time flies by all too fast, and yes you have so much going on at times it is hard to appreciate it but do as much as you can to savour every moment as you will look back on this year with great fondness, even the bad days.

It will not all be plain sailing. There will be glitches, unforeseen events and circumstances but like the real and business world you adapt and overcome. And, know that anything that happens on the programme, any decisions that are made are always done with your best interests at heart, whether you can see and appreciate it at the time or not.

Treasure the contacts and network. You don’t realise it but you have so many contacts and mentors at your disposal, they are invaluable to your career and you will never again meet people that are of the same grit, calibre and genuineness as your MBA faculty, staff and classmates. 

Challenge yourself. I chose consciously to work on my biggest weakness and not go after glory with marks that I knew were achievable, building on skills I already had developed. As I usually do, I took a different path and selected the modules and courses that would round out my career and knowledge, challenge me and make me more aware of what I needed to work on as a professional. And what better way to work on it than with the support of the programme.


1-1Company Project with Team "Nudge Consultancy" 

Never be afraid to ask for help or opinions. For so many years, I was afraid to ask for people's feedback and opinions on my work. The Trinity MBA taught me how to trust my colleagues and mentors. But more importantly than that, to be discerning. To be true to my work, my thought process, my business acumen and my experience. I knew more than I ever gave myself credit for. The Trinity MBA made me realise this.

I welcome coffee and conversations with anyone currently on the MBA or considering it. Please do reach out to me at

Discover the Trinity MBA

Tags: MBA, Alumni, mba alumni, Full-Time MBA, Careers

Edel Mc Cabe

Written by Edel Mc Cabe

 Edel Mc Cabe is a Full-Time MBA Alumna who graduated from The Trinity MBA in August 2020. She has since started a marketing communications agency called EMC Agency.