The Team

Distinctions is built on our professional experience and passion for creating sustainable business practices, a large network of highly skilled coaches and our proven track record in the areas of business strategy, leadership development, executive coaching, mentoring and organisational development and design. As a team we offer experience and scalable expertise


Dayna Caceres | Strategy, Executive Coaching & Organisational Development Specialist

Dayna works with organisations to help them navigate the ever-changing complex nature of work and improving workforce productivity and effectiveness. She founded Distinctions in 2011, having achieved success in Financial Services, where she led a team to build and sell a multi-million euro business. She blends her business experience of aligning strategy and processes with her deep understanding of personal effectiveness to achieve meaningful outcomes at a personal and organisational level.

At the core, it’s about empowering people in business by promoting strategic thinking, implementing self-sufficient work practices and delivering sustainable results. She brings a balanced level of honesty, empathy and respect that both challenges and supports her clients through their development. This coupled with her understanding of how behaviours, personality, and motivational drivers are formed is a powerful tool for building self-awareness.

Key areas of expertise:

Aligning organisational culture with work practices • Business, Team and Executive Coaching • Leadership development and shaping multi-disciplinary teams • Emotional Intelligence • Strategic Change Management • Business Mentoring • Training and facilitating groups • Structuring operational frameworks to deliver business & customer solutions • Building customer centric business models • Creating brand equity in B2B and B2C markets • Sales channel and distribution strategy.


Masters in Business Practice (Hons); Diplomas in Strategic HR Management (Hons), in Business & Executive Coaching (Hons), in Marketing Strategy & Digital Strategy (Hons), and Business Studies; Neuro Science Behavioural Practitioner, Accredited assessor of all BPS Occupational, Ability and Personality Psychometric Tests; Emotional Capital (ECR 360) / EQi 360 & MBTI.


Peter McDermott | Organisational Development Consultant, Coach & Facilitator

Peter specialises in organisational effectiveness, process improvement, staff motivation and leadership development, with a particular interest in team dynamics. He is an experienced negotiator with a proven track record in setting-up and managing high stake affiliate programmes, organisational development projects and multi-disciplinary teams. His professional and academic experience enables him to design and implement work practices that deliver on client’s goals at all levels of the organisation.

With over 20 years’ experience in the Financial Services sector, he has an in-depth understanding of the complexities involved in achieving productive working environments, effective cross departmental functions, and getting the best out of internal and external business relationships. Peter is passionate about empowering clients to succeed, helping them structure their businesses to drive excellence in people and processes.

Key areas of expertise

Organisational Behaviour • Aligning organisational culture with operational systems and processes • Leadership development and shaping multi-disciplinary teams • Business and Executive Coaching • Negotiations • Contact Centre Management • Training and facilitating groups • Affiliate Programmes • Systemic Team Development.


Diplomas in Advanced Systemic Team Development, in Organisational Behaviour (Hons), and in Business & Executive Coaching; Certified Project Manager; Accredited Neuro Science Behavioural Practitioner, Psychometrics assessor of Occupational Tests (BPS), Belbin Team Roles and ECR 360. Accredited member of the Chartered Insurance Institute of Ireland (A.C.I.I.).

Distinctions Associates

Tom Armstrong | Executive Coach and Facilitator

Tom works collaboratively with people, helping them identify and achieve their goals. He works mainly with leaders, business owners and managers. With over 30 years business experience, across a variety of sectors from operations to Board level, he understands the issues faced by his clients, in many cases, having navigated similar challenges himself. His professional experience and executive coaching skills enable him to support, facilitate and challenge his clients to access their full potential. His innate people and communication skills, background and training, enable him to understand the complex dynamics of companies, leadership and performance.

Areas of expertise:

Building self-awareness, behavioural change, performance, emotional intelligence, leadership, managing change, effective communication, and career development.


MSc in Business and Executive Coaching; Personal Profile Analysis Practitioner; ECR 360; BBS Business and Economics; Chartered Accountant; Associate member of the Association for Coaching in Ireland.


Tom is based in South County Dublin, servicing clients across Ireland, UK, and Europe.

Dearbhalla Baviera | Executive Coach, Speaker, Consultant, and Facilitator

Dearbhalla has over 20 years’ experience working in blue chip management consultancies. Bringing together her professional experience in change management, project management, strategic planning, communications, and training, she delivers high impact executive coaching and facilitation support to clients. She works with clients to help them understand their authentic leadership style in terms of driving their own, and their team’s performance. Her experience is that it’s the shift in mind-set and wider perspective that drives the change in behaviours needed to excel as a leader, which often involves actively managing the shift from management to leadership. Emotional Intelligence is at the core of this development journey.

Areas of expertise:

Managing stakeholders effectively, influencing, managing upwards, communicating with confidence, increasing assertiveness and resilience, raising your profile, productivity, prioritising, delegating, and work/life balance.


Diploma in Executive and Leadership Coaching, Accredited Executive Coach, Association of Coaching. Accredited Practitioner of Emotional Capital Reporting (ECR) 360, Certified TTi Success Insights Coach including DISC, Motivational factors, EI, DNA.


Dearbhalla is based in South County Dublin, servicing clients across Ireland.

Ronan Berry | Executive Coach

Ronan comes to the field of executive and business coaching with 10 years’ experience as a civil engineer and a general manager of an international indigenous company in the building materials sector. A key aspect of his role involved keeping his team motivated and engaged as the challenges borne out of the economic recession hit. This became a key driver that led to the establishment of his coaching practice.


Diploma in Executive Coaching (Hons); Certificate in Psychology; Certified administrator of ECR 360; Member of European Mentoring and Coaching Council and Member of Institute of Engineers of Ireland


Ronan is based in the Midlands, servicing clients across Ireland.

Eimear Carney | Executive Coach and Facilitator

Eimear spent 20 years in industry, where she worked globally in senior finance and marketing people manager roles. She uses her strong business acumen and innate skill as a coach to support clients in achieving personal and organisational goals in the areas of leadership, communications, culture, strategy and change management facilitation. Passionate about transformation, Eimear empathically helps clients think about how they change themselves, their teams and their wider organisations with careful consideration of the impact of that change on others. Further, she is a perceptive influencer capable of quickly building trust and developing strong interpersonal relationships, while remain grounded, objective and focused on accountability driven action.

Areas of Expertise:

Business, executive and team coaching; Business mentoring; Strategy and implementation planning; Workshop and programme facilitation; Cultural transformation, Change management and internal communication strategy; Supporting individuals through career navigation/life changing points.


Masters in Personal & Management Coaching, Diploma in Executive and Leadership Coaching, Bachelor of Commerce (Hons), Diploma in Marketing (Hons), Qualified as Chartered Management Accountant, Accredited in a suite of assessments including Emotional Intelligence (EQi 360), Personality (15FQ+), and all British Psychological Society (BPS) Occupational, Ability, and Personality Psychometrics Tests.


Eimear is based in South Dublin, servicing clients across Ireland, UK, and Europe.

Patricia Conlon | Executive Coach, Facilitator and HR Professional

Patricia has over 15 years’ experience in leadership roles. She passionately believes that coaching is key to unlocking the potential of every member of an organisation, in the knowledge that success rests with its people. She works with clients to define their vision for success and to develop plans ensuring they achieve that success. Patricia’s strength is her ability to create an awareness of what an individual’s footprint as a leader and a member of a team is – understanding what can lead to success or contribute to team dysfunction. Clients’ access clarity in their decisions, direction and strategies used to facilitate personal and team transformation.

In addition to her coaching practice, she holds a senior role with a Technology company, has worked in the financial sector, and with business start-ups establishing foundations for high performance.

Areas of expertise:

Leadership development, conscious leadership, collective intelligence in teams, team and organisational dynamics, behavioural change, emotional intelligence, communication, and resilience.


MBS; Diploma’s in Executive Coaching, and Strategic HR (Hons); Master Practitioner in Business Human Neuro Management. Certified administrator of Emotional intelligence tools EQi 360 & ECR 360, DiSC and MBTI psychometrics;


Patricia is based in South Dublin, servicing clients across Ireland, UK and Europe

Michelle Dinneen | Executive Coach and L&D Professional

Michelle has over 17 years’ experience working in HR, Learning and Development and Operations in highly regulated multinational environments. Her areas of expertise include Executive Coaching and L&D interventions in the areas of emotional intelligence, team development, career progression/transition, and enhancing communication skills.


Certificate in Business and Executive Coaching; MSc in Human Resource Leadership; H.Dip Personnel Management; Accredited assessor of all BPS Occupational, Ability and Personality Psychometric Tests; EQi 360 Emotional Intelligence, Margerison McCann Team Management Profile (TMSDI) and Talent Development 360.


Michelle is based in West Cork, servicing clients with the county and surrounds.

Maura Dolan | Executive Coach and Coach Trainer

Maura is a business psychologist and an accredited fellow of coaching (ACF) with over 15 years’ experience working in the area of executive coaching and coaching skills training. She brings strong business acumen and insights to her coaching and training practices, leveraging her comprehensive understanding of finance, compliance, legal and regulatory matters honed through her professional experience within the state and private sectors.  She also has strong commercial experience in marketing, programme development, developing policies and procedures, together with an adaptable and flexible approach to problem-solving. Her strength is inspiring action to support goal achievement. She builds non-judgmental, open and honest relationships, adding value through her motivational yet challenging style. Maura believes that in fast-paced, changing environments, self-awareness and adaptability are the building blocks to moving forward, managing conflict and achieving sustainable change.

Areas of expertise:

Assessing and understanding workplace behaviours, leadership skills including developing a coaching leadership style, executive presence, succession and career planning, developing high potential performers, change management, growth mindset, adaptability and resilience, emotional intelligence, biases and decision making.


Master Coach & Executive coach trainer; Diploma in Executive Coaching (Hons); NLP Practitioner; Accredited assessor of all BPS Occupational, Ability and Personality Psychometric Tests; DiSC; and Emotional Intelligence tools EQi 360 & ECR 360.


Maura is based in South County Dublin, servicing clients across Ireland.

Fabio Grassi | Executive Coach, Facilitator and OD Architect

Fabio has over 20 years’ experience in training and development, with a proven track record in design, development and delivery of powerful organisational development programmes focused on engaging professionals in rapid behavioural change at all organisational levels. Having experienced the tight discipline of the army, the drive of corporate life, and the creativity of high tech industries, his motto is that ‘the best answer to a tough question is not an “either/or” answer but a “what if?” question. Fabio believes the best way to achieve well-formed outcomes is to embrace client’s strengths and guide them to explore diverse perspectives. He supports clients by helping them challenge assumptions, and to think outside the boundaries of conformity to find clarity of purpose.

Areas of expertise:

Emotional intelligence, challenging assumptions, motivation, organisational dynamics, leadership flex, managing change, and effective communications.


INLPTA Master Practitioner Coach; M.Sc. Organisational Behaviour; Master Trainer; EQ Certified Trainer; Certified administrator of DiSC, Emotional Intelligence tools EQi 360 & & ECR 360, and Myers Briggs (MBTI).


Fabio has bases in both Galway and Dublin, servicing clients across Ireland, Europe and the USA.

Ultan Molloy | Executive Coach and Management Consultant

Ultan works as an executive coach and management consultant while owning his community pharmacy, angel investing in MedTech and developing other business interests. His interests are in coaching consulting, inspiring and supporting clients for sustainable behavioural change, high-performance team development, employee engagement and business development. Ultan has worked extensively with senior leaders in the recruitment, IT, pharmacy, financial and veterinary industries, as well as with sportspeople and teams.

Areas of expertise:

Leadership Effectiveness, Management Development, Feedback and Conflict Management, Strategic Planning, High-Performance Team development, Emotional Intelligence, Strengths-based Employee Engagement, and Personal Productivity.


MBS in Business Studies, Diploma in Executive Coaching, Diploma in Strategic Marketing with Digital Marketing, Diploma in Management. Accredited in a range of psychometrics including Emotional Intelligence (ECR 360), Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Hogan Assessment®, Myers-Briggs (MBTI), DISC, and all British Psychological Society (BPS) Occupational, Ability and Personality Psychometrics Tests.


Ultan is based in Galway, servicing clients across Ireland.

Barbara Nugent | Executive Coach

Barbara has over 25 years’ experience in senior management finance roles. She has significant people management experience having led teams and cross functional projects in multinational organisations. Her experience of developing high performance teams and coaching individuals through their journeys to leadership inspired her to move into the world of coaching, in an effort to share the power of coaching on a wider stage.


Diploma in Executive Coaching (Hons); Diploma in Leadership (Hons); Fellow of Chartered Association of Certified Accountants; ECR 360.


Barbara is based in Cork, servicing clients across Ireland.

Lorna Lawless | Psychologist, Executive Coach and Facilitator

Lorna is a qualified psychologist, applying her skills as an Executive Coach and Facilitator. Her areas of expertise are emotional intelligence, mental toughness and flow. Lorna uses her knowledge of these areas to bring clients focus to their use of strengths and identify possible areas for further development. She has a passion for the study of positive psychology, bringing evidence-based interventions to her sessions to allow clients to perform and feel at their best. Lorna has ten years of corporate experience and has presented and published her research at international conferences on emotional intelligence and its impact on reducing work-related stress.

Lorna uses an applied positive psychology approach as her coaching style. This focuses on clients developing strategies to bring about progressive, sustainable change in their lives. She has been described as client centred, empathetic and skilled in building the self- esteem of her clients. She also brings an element of humour and light-heartedness to her sessions making them a positive and warm experience.

Area of Expertise:

Lorna works with individuals and groups from both corporate and sports settings. She focuses on reducing work-related stress by developing client’s skills in emotional intelligence to assess performance and help increase their overall well-being. She applies her knowledge of mental toughness to assist athletes in developing a growth mind-set and overcoming performance anxiety.  Lorna has coached CEOs, managers, professional and amateur athletes and facilitated group sessions in both settings.


First Class Honours MA in Coaching and Positive Psychology, BSc (Hons) in Psychology, Accredited Practitioner for the EQi 2.0, MTQ48 and Strengths Profile, Graduate member of the PSI and BPS working towards Chartered Status.


Lorna is based in Kildare, servicing clients across Ireland.