DLRC Annual Team Building 2024: Intercultural Communication

Published 26th June 2024

DLRC Team Building 2024

DLRC’s annual team building event was a resounding success, bringing together team members from our UK, US, and EU offices. Held at our UK office in Letchworth, the 2024 event focused on Intercultural Communication, emphasising our commitment to fostering strong, inclusive relationships within our diverse team.

Across the two days, we aimed to embrace our teams and reflect that no matter who you are, your abilities, or where you come from, we are stronger when we flourish in our relationships with each other and those around us.


Day One: A Cultural Feast and Heart-warming Performances

A Global Picnic

Despite the typical British weather keeping us indoors, our team picnic was a vibrant start to the event. Held in our Letchworth office, it brought the team together for the first time since December 2023. Team members shared culinary delights from their cultures, including Spanish dried meats, Indian savoury delights, Scottish shortbread, Italian Caprese salad, and American Oreo cookies. This cultural potluck satisfied our taste buds and set the stage for meaningful conversations and connections.

Following the picnic, we took a scenic stroll to Letchworth Hall Hotel, offering a chance to reconnect and explore the urban footpaths of Letchworth Garden City, the world’s first garden city.


Electric Umbrella

What a fantastic formal start to our team building event, led by Electric Umbrella’s Tom, Katie, and Jonathan. Electric Umbrella creates impressive, live, interactive music experiences with learning-disabled people. When their superstars take to the stage, they help change how the world looks at them—and others.

Initially, it was hard to imagine what they would teach us about diversity through music and performance, but their talent and bravery quickly became evident. As they invite you to the stage, you realise that you are not as brave as them, that you perhaps are less comfortable performing in front of your peers, but that they are funny and talented in a way that makes it genuinely heart-warming. It provokes the notion that we need to move past our prejudices and be open to learning about others and ourselves.


DLRC Team Building 2024


Electric Umbrella also discussed how when a learning-disabled person introduces themselves, they would never start by defining themselves by their disability. To explore this, Electric Umbrella also inspired us to create our own ‘I am…’ lists, celebrating our unique qualities beyond professional identities. Some team members shared their lists, accompanied by music from Electric Umbrella, highlighting the personal dimensions that make us who we are.

Well done to the DLRC team, who shared in the ‘I am ……’ song, got up to dance, and joined in with the singing with actions. After a number of the team shared ‘I am a cat mummy’ and ‘I am a dog mum’, we clearly have a culture of identifying as pet-human parents in this company!


Workshops on Intercultural Communication: Understanding Cultural Differences

Our next topic explored different cultures and how, depending on where people sit on Meyers’s culture map for context, there are various ways that people approach communications.  No one way is right, and we will be seen differently depending on where the other person sits on the scale.  With a little effort, we can understand how different cultures like to operate, and we can adapt or explain how we like to operate and how they can better understand us.


DLRC Team Building 2024


The difference between high context and low context was demonstrated aptly with different scenarios experienced within the team.  We also explored how having English as a first language can make you less easily understood in a group that comprises people from around the world – idioms, TLAs and ‘in jokes’ can make us far less well understood.


Evening Dinner and Recognition

After another stroll back to the centre of town (many of us took a different route) to the Turquoise Kitchen, we were delighted to welcome our special guest, the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire Annie Brewster. Annie met with team members and was particularly impressed at the cultural diversity within the organisation.  She then shared the history of her role and details about her very distinguished outfit. However, she did not unsheathe her sword as it was particularly sharp!



Annie also presented certificates to team members for their recent achievements:
  • Indraj Bamrah, Principal Regulatory Consultant & MedTech Team Lead – Chartered Engineer
  • Molly Lapworth, Senior Regulatory Executive – Level 7 apprenticeship with Distinction
  • Jack Hipkins, IT Helpdesk and Support Engineer – Level 3 Apprenticeship with Distinction
  • Ian Ashurst, Principal Regulatory Consultant – Fellow of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society
  • Luis Lopez Navas, Regulatory Consultant – Chartered Scientist
  • Tom Whitley, Senior Regulatory Executive – Registered Scientist


DLRC Team Building 2024


What a clever bunch! After an excellent meal (Turquoise Kitchen never disappoints), we finished the evening with a quiz, further demonstrating their cleverness.


Day Two: Deepening Cultural Insights

Interactive Team Building Sessions and Cultural Assumptions

We kicked off the next morning, continuing the theme of culture from the previous day and focusing on Intercultural Communication across all our cultures in the business. We started our first session after a short icebreaker learning about each other’s cultural heritages, and there were many stories to share. We created a live demonstration of the Ethnocentrism and Ethnorelativism models, highlighting the key messages of each and reflecting on where we think the business is along Bennett’s scale.



Our final session tackled cultural assumptions. Teams reviewed pictures and statements, coming up with their interpretations of what they could see and drawing from the information given. This was a great way to see how our cultures and experiences led to different assumptions, and we really did hear some imaginative explanations!

We wrapped up the day with a summary of the key messages. It was a fantastic two days during which our teams networked, connected, and embraced their unique individualities.



A Unified, Stronger Team

Team Building 2024 was a joyful success. It strengthened our team’s bonds, enhanced our understanding of intercultural communication, and equipped us with tools to prevent misunderstandings and improve interactions. A crucial skillset to navigate team and client interactions by preventing misunderstandings and enhancing communication. It also provided ample opportunity to connect with colleagues in person— an essential time for a hybrid team and a company spread over several countries. The event was a testament to our belief that we are stronger together, embracing our unique individualities and diverse cultural backgrounds.


DLRC Team Building 2024


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