"It's a stage of life that sadly a lot of men still go through," Niall McGarry on lad culture
"I could have been a lad when I was at school."
Though the issue itself is nothing new, "ladism" may not be a term that many are familiar with. Essentially, it's a sub-culture that results in many young men going down a dangerous path through life.
According to Niall McGarry, founder of JOE.ie and Maximum Media, UK lad culture is rooted in an archaic media scene and an out-dated class structure. Niall was talking to host Tadhg Enright on The Architects of Business, in partnership with EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™.
When bringing his Irish brand's ethos over to the UK, he said there was a clear gap in the market. Many publications were aimed towards this lad culture, which he said is not a true reflection of modern male values.
"Because what you had is some titles were aimed at ladism, and lad culture," he said.
The UK's class system and lad culture
Despite so many publications directing content towards that demographic, he felt there was a need to approach it differently. It may not have been as prominent on these shores as with our neighbours, but he could understand how easy it is to gravitate towards that sub-culture.
"I could have been a lad when I was at school to go back to that. That’s a stage of your life you go through. Do you want your Dad to be a lad? Do you want to grow up to be a lad? Do you want to get married to a lad? No," he said.
"Ladism is not cool. And for me it’s a stage of life that sadly a lot of young men still go through," he said.
Having come from the West of Ireland, the UK's class system was not something Niall would've been familiar with. When he moved his brand across the Irish Sea, that proved to only strengthen his position.
"We went in, we’re ignorant to class. And again that’s an advantage because I came from a West of Ireland background where to me everyone was the same class," he said.
"We believe a young guy from Scunthorpe, from a housing estate in Scunthorpe could go on to become the CEO of a company. Because that’s the way it should be," he said.