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Over the last 10 years you will most likely have been inundated with corporate lunches and dinners, each time faced with a similar format of F&B, speakers and let’s be honest the usual 3 to 4 topics discussed at a banquet table in the attempt to build rapport and avoid any awkward silences.

The feeling and emotions that develop in preparation for these events have transformed over the years from a childlike excitement of trying something for the first time, to a frame of mind that has programed itself to just go through the phases in order to ensure minimal disappointment.

Recently you got invited to the John Smith Corporation’s Gala Dinner at a 5 star hotel in the city. As you arrived at the venue there was music coming from the function room, stimulating a buzz in the pre-function area as everyone tried to guess what was on the other side of the doors.

Suddenly the doors opened and you could see inside- the room looked amazing, white linen table clothes, candles, no detail was missed. As you moved to your seats you couldn’t help but notice the hundreds of violins and violas lying on the tables.

A maestro appeared on stage and said, ‘in 30 minutes we will come together and play an orchestrated piece of music.’

Conversation erupted across the room: ‘I use to play an instrument’, ‘I was in the junior band but never made it any further’, ‘I hated learning the piano when I was a kid’. People were instantly bonding at their tables as they shared stories and memories.

You didn’t believe the maestro’s bold statement but believe it or not… you did it, 30 minutes later, 300 individuals played together in unison! What a wonderful shared achievement, proving that anything is possible.

Ensuring events have participants NOT just audiences is what makes an event memorable and allows people to experience, absorb and retain information. When you are a participant your retention and engagement levels are 50% higher compared to being a passive audience member just listening to the content.

A professional team building session or team event run with purpose and focus builds REAL relationships and allows us to have GENUINE conversations. Events are all about the people! Make them participants NOT just an audience. Let them feel achievement, belonging and value. Let them experience something new and something they will remember.

You’ll never forget the night you played in an Orchestra!

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