Drum Circles - what are they all about?

Drum Circles - what are they all about?

Employment & HR

Divyansh Gupta

Divyansh Gupta

28 Aug 2017, 12:37 — 5 min read

Sometimes ancient wisdom and traditions can help us in our daily life even today. A drum circle is a practice that has existed from time immemorial with people gathering around and playing drums. This article will explain what drum circles are and their application to improving relations between employees.


A drum circle is a basically a community or team based activity involving rhythm and sometimes dance. In the ancient times, many communities had traditions that included drum circle activities. Each culture has drum circles that function differently for different purposes.


A dose of entertainment along with high energy team building exercise which is performed with the help of a set of musical instruments like drums, tambourines etc,  is probably the simplest explanation of the concept of drum circle. These energy boosting exercises infuse the participants with a renewed vigour and vitality.


The drum circle progresses with a specific procedure which involves a number of steps:


The first step is to build the connection between the various employees, which is quite commonly known as the ice breaking session. There is a certain amount of tension and nervousness as the participants belong to various groups and have their own fears, limitations and inhibitions. Thus, the first step is to get all these participants on the same page mentally so that they are able to enjoy the entire experience.


As the drum circle facilitator eases the individuals into a subtle yet rhythmic beat, the group begins to feel as a whole lot better as they have now acquired a sense of the rhythm and they are able to play in a better way which gives way to a sense of achievement.


High level of excitement leads to stress reduction and a positive environment which in turn provides a healthy atmosphere among the company employees and improved success rate of the organisation.


Historical significance 

Ancient tribes often used music to bring the members of the community closer as a functioning group. The instruments they created mimicked the sounds of nature around them. Utilising these sounds and placing them in rhythmic patterns created a communal effect that was advantageous to the group intent. Drum and dance celebrates harvest, weddings, and religious ceremonies since before written history.


Corporate drum circles

Drum circles are becoming quite common in corporate settings where they are often used to engage employees through such entertaining activities. They can be easily weaved inside a conference to break the monotonous tone and achieve greater outcomes.


When a large group of employees come together to jam to the rhythm of the drums, group synchronicity is achieved which then leads to the achievement of managerial goals. It leaves all employees with a great sense of achievement and drives home the message of unity and group versatility at the same time.


The circle formation allows each participant to perform at his/her best potential. Mostly the facilitators take centre stage to help guide individuals to perform to a particular beat. Rest of the activity is continued on by the members themselves, who feel unified and on the same level with each other.


The focus of these drum circles is on generating creativity, releasing stress and building effective communication skills. It is amazing to watch people from a diverse range of backgrounds participate in this activity. You are as likely to encounter young drumming enthusiasts and those who have no idea about drumming at all.


Drum circles can:

  • Break the ice between large groups of individuals who start communicating more effectively after the session.
  • Be an effective energy booster, especially as a break during long conferences or meetings.
  • Generate enthusiasm among members.
  • Add an element of fun, which is much needed in the heavily stressful lives of these corporates.
  • Overall, provide experiential learning to the participants with their highly engaging nature.
  • Drum circles are becoming increasingly popular due to their memorable, interactive musical experiences mixed with corporate learning and organisational goal achievement. They need to be organised more often in an office setting to enhance better productivity and employee skill development.


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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy or position of GlobalLinker.

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Divyansh Gupta

A mind behind Quest with the vision of Outdoor Experiential Learning across Industries and Outdoor Education in Schools.