Searching for the next corporate team building activity for your team of colleagues? Already tried your hand at all the run-of-the-mill activities out there? Already bruised (or been bruised by) your colleagues with a few hundred paintballs? Or have you memorised the entire history of that colleague’s love life after being stuck next to him during that loooong arduous hiking trip?
Here’s a big suggestion for you: MUSIC!
Music team-building activities are very holistic, encompassing many aspects of what a team-building activity should deliver. Here are some characteristics of music as a tool for team-building, some more obvious, some less.
1) Painless Way to Reinforce Agility
Ok, as we already know, there ARE many teambuilding activities out there which actually cause PHYSICAL pain…… but we’re not going there. The keyword here is AGILITY in your team. This could take up another entire article, but in a nutshell, agility is your team’s ability (it rhymes!) to adapt to new situations, and perform WELL under changing circumstances, while working together towards a common goal. The process of developing this ability involves every individual’s response to change and, yes, it can be painful. Making music as a teambuilding activity ticks all the boxes in agility-development: it’s a brand new activity for the vast majority of individuals, it involves a common goal which can only be achieved as a team, and it involves individuals’ responses to change in a dynamic manner. The main difference: music makes the process PAINLESS. The effect that music has on people is both energising and uplifting. Moreover, in a group setting, music has an ability to draw people together which few other tools possess.
2) Fun & Engaging
Who doesn’t enjoy a time of letting their hair down and making “noise” together? The very nature of music makes for a fun and stress-free activity. No need to crack your brains to solve puzzles to escape from a dungeon, no physical stress for those who “aren’t exactly the sporty-type” After all, the whole idea of team-building day is for everyone to RELAX right? Music is one activity that EVERYONE can engage in, regardless of brains or brawn.
3) Satisfy Childhood Dreams and Aspirations
Yup. We can see you smiling at this one. For those have jumped on the bed playing an air guitar to sound of their favourite bands on the radio, this one’s definitely for you. A music team-building activity is an excellent platform for your colleagues to make those childhood dreams a reality, with actual instruments and singing. This process is made even more effective if there are live coaches to guide them.
4) Variety of Instruments Play out Department Roles
There are many similarities between a corporate team and a rock band or orchestra, and many experts around the world – such as Ruth Blatt of The Rock Band Project – have used this model to inspire teamwork development in corporate organisations. The fundamental principle is simple – every corporate organisation consists of different parts, with unique functions, performing unique roles, but achieving a COMMON GOAL. A band functions based on the exact same principle. As your staff members try their hand at all the different instruments, besides just having fun, they get the feeling of what it means to be performing unique roles in tandem with other team members to produce something excellent. Also, especially when no one is a proficient musician, the playing field is level and everyone get to work together on something NEW, just like when your team encounters a new project in the workplace.
5) Chance to Make Music Professionally
This aspect of music team-building activities will really resonate with those who just know inside that they love to MAKE their own music. But not everyone has had the privilege of getting proper music lessons, right? The music-making process therefore gets confined to the karaoke club, the bedroom… or the bathroom. For such a budding musician, a music team-building session would not only be extremely exciting, but also tremendously enriching! To make music “properly”, playing REAL songs on REAL instruments, with the guidance of PROFESSIONAL coaches. And who knows, if things work out well, personal music lessons might just be the next step!
6) Life-changing, Momentous Experience for All
In our years of experience living and breathing music team-building activities, we have observed their effect on people. Time and time again, we’ve seen responses of amazement, not so much by what we could do, but by what THEY could do. Individually, music brings out hidden abilities within people which they didn’t know they had. We’ve seen engineers, finance managers, accountants, teachers, technicians you name it. People from widely varying backgrounds, all with ZERO musical training, able to play music WELL. We truly believe that there’s a musician in EVERYONE, but once again, this could make for another entire article. The point is, the moment that people discover an ability which they never thought they had, and the feeling of using that ability together with others to achieve a common goal – that moment is significant, priceless, and life-changing.
7) Therapeutic – heal departmental conflicts
A HUGE factor of conflict in the workplace is conflicting goals. When individuals strive not alongside their fellow comrades but in different directions, that’s when conflicts arise – especially since a common goal is fundamental to the effectiveness of a team. As much as we try, however, we all know that departmental conflicts are almost inevitable. This is where music comes in as a wonderful tool for healing conflicts in the workplace. Collectively, music brings people together towards ONE common goal – playing a song together. Regardless of how much they’ve worked against one another in the workplace, playing a song together reminds people of how it feels to work TOGETHER towards ONE goal – in case they might have forgotten how it feels like. Making music together causes people to put aside their differences and work as a team, in a way that they’ve never experienced before. This, coupled with the fun, stress-relieving effect that music naturally brings – plus the CRAZINESS of simply rocking out together – gives rise to a very conducive environment for cleaning up the wounds from the battlefield, reuniting and recalibrating your team for the days ahead.
8) Great Pairing with Milestone Events (awards ceremonies, rewards, employee benefits, celebration, dinner and dance)
Among the many ingredients which comprise an effective company milestone event, there are two important ones that are a must for an event that people will enjoy instead of endure: FUN and NOVELTY. Apart from the usual components of a company event – award presentations, lucky draws, table games, long. long. speeches……every milestone event needs a special activity to give it that extra “oomph”. That’s where the fun and novelty come in. It has to be engaging, it has to give your colleagues a sense of excitement. This keeps your colleagues looking forward to milestone events year after year, instead of thinking it’s something they “just have to be at”. A music team-building activity is one of the few which tick all the boxes. It requires the participation of everyone, it creates an infectious atmosphere of fun, it’s very novel, even for musicians, and it’s something that will stick in the memories of all, keeping them wondering what next year’s event will be like! What’s more, instead of hiring an external band to provide the music for your company event, why not make YOUR OWN music?