February 17, 2020

Meet John O’Shaughnessy, Creative Director of Verve in Dublin, Ireland.


How did you get started in events? How did you end up at Verve?

I was working for a design agency and Verve was my client. I ending up visiting their office a lot to present proposals and one day they convinced me to stay. From there, I fell into events head first. I’m an oldtimer now, having been there for 12 years.


– Tell us about a time you’ve totally failed. What can we learn from it?

I once pitched a proposal to a food company without ever tasting their product (which was honestly pretty unappetizing). Big mistake. You really have to get under the bonnet of a brand and believe in the products you’re helping to market.


– Describe 3 personality traits you think someone needs in order to make it in this line of work.

Resilience, Creativity, and Curiosity.


– What trends are you seeing in the event and live communication industry?

Sustainability is the biggest trend we’re seeing – events can generate a lot of waste so I think the whole industry is finally seriously starting to consider the legacy we leave behind.


– How do you benefit from being a 27Names member?

27Names is endlessly inspiring especially from a creative perspective – after every meeting I have a notebook of new ideas to take back to Dublin! It’s been a great opportunity to connect with some of Europe’s most talented event professionals and visit some incredible venues.


– If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing?

Probably interior design – I grew up on a farm but working with cows never appealed to me as an option!


– Most interesting thing you’ve read, seen or done recently?

I was in Argentina last month and heard about “Falsa Boda:” essentially they’re fake weddings staged simply as an excuse for a huge party!


– What might someone be surprised to know about you? Any hidden talents or unusual hobbies?

I have a twin brother – we’ve been known to swap places occasionally. That’s all I’m saying.


– Something everyone is obsessed with but you don’t like or understand?

Selfies – I don’t understand the enduring fascination.


– You can go back in time and give yourself one piece of advice: what would it be?

Follow your gut instincts and don’t be afraid to ask for help!


Random Facts

You never know when this info might come in handy 😉

– You’re being forced to sing karaoke: What song would you sing?

It takes about a bottle of vodka to force me to do karaoke but ‘Supermodel’ by RuPaul is a favourite.

– Someone wants to buy you a drink: What should they order?

Guinness of course – it’s a meal and a party in a glass.

– The top 5 Frequently Used Emojis on your phone:

☘️🙅🏻‍♂️☠️🧟‍♂️👯‍♂️ I’m not sure what any of them mean.

John’s Dublin Tips

– Favorite coffee shop?

Bewleys Grafton Street:  Traditional cafe with a small theatre and gorgeous stained glass windows.

– Favorite local publication/blog/Instagram account?

Dublin Decoded: tours of Dublin that most tourists don’t experience.

– Top 3 sites every tourist should visit?

Lismore Castle

Inisboffin Island

The Sally Gap, Wicklow

Thank you for sharing with us John!

If you’d like to learn more about 27Names and our members, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.


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