Is everyone in your company singing from the same hymn sheet? If there are signs of disharmony, or some people are soft-pedalling, perhaps it’s time to change your tune – because as well as supplying endless corporate clichés, music offers some powerful team-building opportunities.
All sorts of musical activities are on offer, but – partly thanks to the Gareth Malone effect – choral singing is increasingly popular. The Workplace Choir (0247 722 0159, theworkplacechoir.co.uk) offers team-building days for up to 100 participants, as well as 12-week programmes to organise and run a company choir.
The aim of the day or half-day workshops is to learn a song and perform it as a choir, and no musical knowledge or previous experience is required. Senior Musical Director Andy Guthrie says: “We do teach some harmony, so it’s not just like a karaoke session. But there’s no expectation that anyone has done anything like this before, or can read music.”
If singing doesn’t appeal, there are plenty of noisier and more exotic options. For example, Rhythmworks offers Japanese Taiko drumming workshops (07958 949 023, rhythmworks.com), while the Rock and Roll Experience can even create a company rock group from scratch over the course of a day (0843 289 8587, rockandrollexperience.co.uk).
Most outfits will come to your premises or a local venue – and unless everyone in the business is taking part, the latter option is recommended!
Pride is all that’s at stake, but any embarrassment at singing in public is soon forgotten.
Mr Guthrie says: “It’s often the people who think they can’t sing who get the most out of the experience, and sometimes it can transform their lives.”
Many participants report that their musical interlude helped them get to know colleagues better, improved their standard of teamwork and increased levels of confidence and wellbeing.
A half-day’s choir experience with two or three vocal coaches is inexpensive. Costs rise where more facilitators and equipment are required, but it’s still a cost-effective awayday.