In search of a unique collaborative environment, we joined Facilitator Pavel Lempert and Master Drummer Mangue Sylla from Drum Café.

Through an evening of collective rhythms and engaging conversation we were taught how crucial it is to create organizational structures that enable collaboration and cooperation. We spent an hour constructing a unifying drum cadence that allowed individual members the freedom to create their own solo moments while being supported by the group.

This experience reiterated that true creativity requires structure, focus, and discipline. Throughout the facilitation we discovered that we do not listen to each other as often as we thought. We were mentally preparing our next comment, formulated our next idea, or a host of other reasons that divide our attention. The drum circle required extreme focus and listening to provide the structure we needed, which led us to be more creative and granted us more freedom when it was our time to shine.


Here’s what some of the participants had to say about it:

Participating in the Innovation Loft’s ‘Drum Café’, provided a great reminder of the importance of working with and surrounding yourself with diverse team members.  The presenters opened with a powerful quote from Nelson Mandela, ‘I am who I am because of those around me’ which triggers additional reflection in this area. I strive to continue to be a truly inclusive leader – bringing diverse perspectives together to solve complex problems and also to create the needed intersection for innovation.

-Michele Landon, Ernst & Young


As a trainer, facilitator, and coach, the “call-and-response” drumming was a great exercise in active listening, and it challenged us to get out of our own heads. (Surprisingly difficult to do.) I loved the fun and collaborative environment that was created. It quickly opened up dialogue within my team, eliminated fear and risk, and allowed us to quickly create an experience that valued everyone’s input. The end result was a successful and fun (although slightly imperfect) outcome/performance that we were all happy to be a part of. The drumming was incredibly uplifting and fun, which really opened people up, and allowed for instant connection. Loved it.

-Steve Cherches, Big Blue Gumball


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