Twitter Q & A: Áine Mulloy - The Girl Behind One of Facebook's Success Stories

Catherine Madden | 21 November 2016

Girl Crew began as just another Facebook group page set up in Ireland and has become a huge success among women all over the globe. Being lauded as one of Facebook’s success stories of the last year, we were more than excited to organise Twitter Q & A with Áine Mulloy, GirlCrew’s CoFounder and Head of Marketing. If you missed the live session on Twitter, you have a chance to catch up now.

How did GirlCrew come together?

@elvacarri started things off one Fri night when friends were busy, bored she turned to @Tinder to find new friends to go out dancing with. I joined as a member and saw a chance to make the experience more streamlined. I got chatting with Elva and joined the team… very informal at this stage… a few months later @elvacarri & @PamIrishTimes met at @WebSummit Surf Summit in Mayo, she was looking for a project to get involved with. To see if we could work together we went away for a (wet) weekend and talked through plans and projects. We hit it off and @GirlCrewHQ was born.

Tell us a bit about your background and career to date?

I did my BA and MA in @nuigalway and I wanted a career as a #literaryagent. From there I interned at @AshvilleTeam before landing a job @edco_ie. I stayed at @edco_ie for 3+ yrs, but earlier this year a chance came up at Gill Books so I interviewed. I was down to 2nd round but it wasn’t to be… @GirlCrewHQ was growing fast, so withdrew my application to Gill Books and handed in my notice @edco_ie on the same day!

Why did you get involved?

Loved the concept behind @GirlCrewHQ and it was something I was looking for at that time so could see the need for it.

What inspires you in your work?

Seeing the community grow and evolve is great, it’s such a positive space and negates so many female stereotypes

What is the vision for the future?

We aim to be the largest female network in the world, so that no woman is left behind.

How many people are currently on the GirlCrew team?

We’re small, but fierce - 3 co-founders, 1 junior dev, & hiring for #leaddev role at the moment. We also have roughly 100 volunteers, who we love!

How big is GirlCrew currently?

Right now, we’ve groups in over 40 cities, but this is growing with location requests coming in all the time.

What types of Crews are currently set up?

Haha! Anything you can think of, mums groups, 40+, careers, bloggers, entrepreneurs, crafts, TV spoiler chats, fitness, fashion etc etc.

Can there be a tech group?

We’ve had a pop-up for @WebSummit that’s worked well. We add groups based on member requests/interest and have had #tech events before.

What are the growth plans for GirlCrew?

Ideally, we’d like to keep growing the locations we have already, and add other key locations based on a series of metrics.

What advice do you have for other startups?

Ask for help and #network - that’s almost a job in itself as not all events are equally valuable, so make a list and prioritise.

Do you think college/university courses prepare people for the reality of starting a business?

Yes and no. I did Arts but I’m now in tech - so loads of transferable skills, but not so many core “business” ones. They can be learnt though! 3rd level is great for teaching problem solving & critical thinking. You may need to be creative in the application of your skillset.

How can guys get involved and spread the word?

We’ve a guys & girls page in Dublin with over 6k members, and we’re always on the hunt for collaborations!

From a startup perspective, what has been your biggest learning?

It’s been a total rollercoaster! We’ve met amazing people like Mark Zuckerberg @sherylsandberg but we’ve hit roadblocks… you need to be prepared for that, people say it but in reality it’s true. It’s not a 9-5 life, and you need to think on your feet.

What different things have you heard GirlCrew being mentioned for?

People love the community and the spirit of it, there’s no judgement so everyone is welcome. We’re built on the principle of respect. It’s nice to hear women of all ages find friends, jobs, houses, mentors, advice through our network

Obvious question. Where do we start. How do we find our Crew?

That’s easy, you can find the list of groups here or for #Dublin by messaging us at GirlCrew HQ on Facebook.