DRUMMING, DANCING AND THE CELEBRATION OF CORPORATE JOY

Drumming has become a popular process to facilitate team building and enhance other corporate interventions. It is also a form of celebration.

How effective is drumming as a corporate spirit-builder?

The Nigerian drummer Baba Olatunji says: “Where I come from we say that rhythm is the soul of life, because the whole universe revolves around rhythm and when we get out of rhythm, that’s when we get into trouble. For this reason the drum, next to the human voice is our most important instrument. It is special.”

There is an old Arab proverb: “He who makes a mistake is still our friend; he who adds to or shortens a melody is still our friend; but he who violates a rhythm unawares can never be our friend.”

Drumming at Syngenta

This is taken to mean that if you are listening, if you are aware that you are violating the rhythm, then you will know enough to stop and figure out where you are. This has implication for leadership in encouraging alignment with company vision and drumming is a powerful tool to facilitate this.

Research has shown that the use of the drum in indigenous cultures for ritual and ceremony has specific neurological effects. These effects enhance community well being and the ability to access vision.

Rhythmic drumming lifts my spirit and fills me with creativity. When I share this experience with others they report feeling good and quite often use words like “release”. Release from stress, release of energy and release from boredom.

There is a huge payoff for companies who encourage expressions of joy in achievement, fun in the work place and celebration.

Our drumming events have a multiplicity of applications. We use them to enhance learning, anchor insight, entrain and align with company initiatives, or just plain let hair down and celebrate.


And what about dancing?

South American poet, medical anthropologist and psychologist, Rolando Toro, who recently visited South Africa to accept, amongst others and other things, Lance Bloch as a teacher/facilitator of Biodanza, developed the Biodanza system of integration through music and movement more than forty years ago in Chile in response to what he perceived as the increasing dissociation of individuals in modern culture.

Rolando Toro Araneda, founder of the Biodanza system of movement full of meaning, presenting a Biodanza session in Johannesburg Toro started working with psychiatric patients in Santiago, Chile, and soon realised the profound effects of music and movement upon them: depressive people became more joyful, and the disintegrative states of paranoid schizophrenics stabilised.

Today, Biodanza is applied and practised in numerous contexts, notably in the corporate world where its effects are to not only stimulate individual health, but also organisational health through fostering a sense of joy in work and a feeling of community, friendship and solidarity amongst co-workers.

Participants report a renewed experience of well-being, and companies find that their employees consider their work, and their lives inside the company, to be more meaningful because of and through their experience of Biodanza.

Drumming and Biodanza are available as part of longer workshops, for conferences, X-mas parties or once-off events, and Biodanza is also available on its own on a weekly basis.

%d bloggers like this: