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Ah, the “happy hour” — a civilized concept harkening to a sort of 1950s civility — when one celebrates the day’s work, finds an hour of ease, light banter, perhaps a moment to toast some good news. A connection of sorts before we part to move into the evening’s activities. A pause that, literally, refreshes.

Way back in 2010 in the aftermath of the Great Recession, Thoma emerged a leaner, smarter, better firm. But something had shifted. We trimmed the fat and lost a little sizzle in the process. The serious business we were doing was making us, well — rather serious — as if the post recession smile we were sporting had a touch too much Botox.

We needed a way to celebrate our successes and cultivate our cool factor. We needed a time to connect across the firm and share “real” time, not just Instagram moments. So we instituted happy hour and have kept the tradition going ever since.

Now we know better than most that great brands breed great brand cultures. Brand promises lived out across all aspects of a business make for inspiring and visionary places to work and volunteer. Google may be the king of brand culture as laid out on their “philosophy” page:

“Our founders built Google around the idea that work should be challenging, and the challenge should be fun. We believe that great, creative things are more likely to happen with the right company culture — and that doesn’t just mean lava lamps and rubber balls.”

No it doesn’t. Google has gone way beyond lava lamps to create workspaces and culture that foster teamwork, creativity, a sense of play — and major agility, speed and innovation. The investment is clearly paying off.

T3 (a.k.a Thoma Thirsty Thursdays) is a civilized moment of connection with a creative twist. We present a new cocktail and mocktail once a month along with a few munchies. In the current pandemic, we’ve kept to our tradition, hosting T3 online. That time together is particularly important to us as we work to ensure a strong culture in a distanced environment.

It’s always been a pretty simple deal. But I notice that the niggling irritations seem to melt away with the ice chips, there is ALWAYS something to toast, roast and laugh about. No one will be over-served — but everyone seems to leave feeling served. T3 is a brand culture builder for sure. And I suggest that you create a small moment of celebration that seems right for your culture and see for yourself the positive outcome of brand building within your company.


Author Thoma Thoma

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