How singing helped with employee re-engagement

How singing helped with employee re-engagement
Type of post: Choir news item
Sub-type: No sub-type
Posted By: Amanda Fisackerly
Status: Current
Date Posted: Tue, 31 May 2022
One of the greatest challenges for organisations and companies during the pandemic was keeping the corporate culture and cohesion of colleagues, even in the smallest of workforces. Many employees have worked at home for the last two years, and maybe only spoken to co-workers or managers sporadically, in some cases less than once a week.

As employers and employees grapple with the return to working in a shared space, it’s clear that for some, the flexibility of home working, driven by the pandemic, has become an attractive ‘normal’ with some employees feeling reluctant to return.

However, not all businesses want their staff to continue working remotely full time and some are preparing for a return to the office in some form or another. So what can employers do to encourage people to return to the workplace and reconnect with their colleagues and the purpose of the organisation?

Among other initiatives, Surrey County Council (SCC) pro-actively chose to embrace the excitement and shared focus of the Platinum Jubilee. It hosted an employee event over the lunch period, encouraging its workforce from across the county to meet during the break and spend some time together in an informal setting. Due to the neurochemicals released when people sing together with others giving a heightened sense of connectedness and inclusion, SCC invited Elmbridge Choir to sing during the event. The choir is a thriving volunteer led, not for profit, non audition, mixed voice adult community choir based in Surrey.

Over one hundred employees signed up to attend, many getting into the swing of it by joining in with the singing and wearing Jubilee themed clothes, whilst others brought home baked Jubilee cupcakes to share.

As Madeleine Pallas, Head of Internal Communications says: “Thank you very much for your star turn at yesterday’s Platinum Jubilee event. Your choir’s contribution very much made the day, pulling it all together, and from the feedback I have received, our staff loved it!”

Elmbridge Choir Chair, Amanda Fisackerly commented: “Although only a quarter of our 90 members could attend, we had a great time! It’s so good for us to give something back to our community, especially those who have worked tirelessly through the pandemic to serve our needs under such difficult circumstances. It gave us a chance to practice our performance craft, while singing uplifting and inspiring music. It was heart warming to see the audience joining in and some were even dancing!”

Elmbridge Choir offers potential new members of any age a free programme of taster sessions, so they can try the choir out for four weeks before deciding if they’d like to join. In particular, the choir is looking for new tenor and bass members at the moment.

As first time performer, recent new bass member Andy says: “I loved it. Some butterflies but as soon as we started it was amazing. Filled me with a great sense of pride and joy! The fact it was for a good cause is just icing on the cake! Elmbridge Choir gives me a great feeling of togetherness and I find it really relaxing and rewarding. Forget yoga. Join our choir.”