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IFS – An education in friendship

Lernia is one of Sweden’s leading employment agencies and education providers. Every year, they help 15 000 people finding work. For many people with a foreign background, a job or education at Lernia is a first step into the Swedish labor market and thus a way into the Swedish society. We wanted to find a way to show how valuable and important the first employment and workplace is in the process of integration.

And the fact is that studies show that friendship in the workplace is one of the most important tools for integration. Meanwhile, global studies show that Swedes are bad at making new friends. The worst in the world actually. How can people who just moved to Sweden become integrated if we do not give them the chance to be? Could Lernia do something about it? We decided to give Swedes an education in friendship.

We teamed up with a psychologist and expert on loneliness and created a friendship course for workplaces. It consisted of 36 questions based on psychological research presented in a deck of cards. The questions gradually got more personal aiming to make the players feel more and more close to each other, which is the basis for trust and friendship. Eight strangers got to try the questions on each other in the research process, an experiment that was recorded. The film was distributed and communicated through press pitching and bought media.

The project resulted in earned media reach of over 7 000 000, while brand tracking showed an increased awareness and preference for Lernia. The deck of cards sold out and had to be reprinted several times.