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Start-Up Story: Role Players for Training

When I resigned from my permanent and pensionable position as a HR Manager in Financial Services there was a genuine surprised response from my colleagues – not because I was resigning after almost 14 years service at a time when the Tiger was just starting to ‘purr’ but because I was hanging up my business suit to take to the ‘boards’ – to train as a professional actor at Ireland’s premier drama school. Following 2 years of full time training and about 3 of working as a jobbing or freelance actor I discovered the world of using drama based skills in business and education – specifically in learning, development, assessment and recruitment.

Role Players for Training

The job of a professional corporate role player was an unknown to me until I got my first job (coincidentally in Financial Services) in the city of London.

7 years later still working as a freelance corporate role player with major organisations throughout Europe, I decided it was time for me to take control of my career where I really had found my niche – a marrying of my two previous worlds.

In 2011 with 2 anchor clients and a small team of associates with a similar background to myself – Role Players for Training was born.

The challenges

The challenges for us were getting in front of the relevant people in organisations who weren’t aware of (a) our existence and (b) the value of using drama based skills to support learning and development and gaining the confidence of large organisations who may be restricted in giving a small start up the opportunity to prove themselves.

Our story so far is one of hard work in getting our message out, building our team and offering and of course our client list.

The rewards from the overwhelming positive feedback from our clients make it all very worthwhile.

I would love to tell you more about what we do – feel free to contact me.

Written by Rita Smyth. For more information visit

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