Building a culture we’re all proud of is something we take pretty seriously at AFFINITY. So our Social Club team are always busy ensuring there are regular events to bring us together in a non-work context, to bring our brand values and vision to life and keeping things fun and fresh.
St Patrick's Day gave us another chance to work our magic. Although the day itself is used to commemorate the arrival of Christianity in Ireland, and celebrates the heritage and culture of the Irish in general, it’s usually associated with the colour green, shamrocks and drinking (lots of)…..
So to dial down the focus on the drinking part, or at least delay our drink until we’d earned it, we incorporated an interactive history lesson in the form of public speaking and spontaneous performance! And so living all four of our brand values: Curiosity, Craft, Collaboration and especially Courage.
A full script was prepared, elaborating on the history of St Patrick’s Day – together with some interesting, unknown facts (or folklore) and Irish jokes. The script was split up and randomly allocated.
When cued, each team member took centre stage and read out their ‘part’ in their most convincing ‘Irish accent’. Our resident Irish staff member, Sinead, set the scene and helped everyone to ‘tune’ their ear and speaking voice by kicking off with a bit of Irish storytelling and true/false verification. For example:
Did you know that ‘Up until the 1920s, couples could legally marry in Ireland just by walking towards each other, as long as they did so in Teltown, county Meath, on Saint Bridget’s Day. If the marriage didn’t work out, they could also divorce at the same spot on the same day by walking away from each other. The custom was based on old Irish Brehon laws which allowed temporary marriage contracts.” To which Sinead stated that however funny it was not at all true. Fake news alert!
Or how about, “Ireland is currently the only country in the European Union without a postcode system. That’s all on the brink of changing, as it’s in the midst of being introduced – at the small cost of 15 million Euro”. Which our resident Irish lass subsequently verified as true!
Guess what - you can’t believe everything you read on the internet, even when headed ‘fact’.
So after collaborating, feeding our curiosity, showing courage (or in this case Dutch Courage!) and doing our best, we definitely know who to and who not to ask to do an Irish brogue in future.