There is nothing more guaranteed to get members of an audience mumbling and folding their arms than when someone introduces the morning or afternoon ‘energiser’. No matter how effective and engaging our activities actually are, we make every effort to avoid any negative apprehensions from the very start. We have many unique and entertaining strategies to ease, shock and surprise any audience into our high-energy sessions.
Here is just one example – our gum boot dancing activity. One early morning last week, I met with our African performers in downtown Reading. By 7.30am, we were all at the conference venue, with our performers hidden in position and in full costume.
The night before, our on-site event team had discretely placed nearly 200 pairs of wellington boots all around the main plenary room. These boots were ultimately to become conference giveaways for the delegates – that is after being required for a very unusual task!
I walked on stage, facing a bleary eyed audience. I thought it only fair to reassure everyone that the scheduled morning energiser would be gentle and easy. I quickly explained that, for a complete change from corporate energiser convention, we were to adorn specially purchased wellies and take a stroll around the hotel gardens. Our aim was to try and identify a very rare and elusive spotted toad. This would greatly help the venue staff to submit a more accurate report to the wildlife authorities!
Everyone jumped up at the thought of some sun and fresh air and, in no time at all, our willing audience was booted and ready to go. This was exactly the point when I opened the doors to have our amazing African performers come crashing in with drums while singing their hearts out. We were not going outside for a walk at all. We were all to learn the unique skill of South African gumboot dancing!
It is hard to describe just how infectious and engaging our African team is but, in seconds, everyone in the room was swaying and putting the first steps together. Only minutes further on, the room was synchronised and stopping and starting perfectly.
This totally self-contained event combines drumming, singing and movement with all the vibrant energy of Africa. Dressed in colourful mining costumes, our performers taught everyone an uplifting dance, which always totally changes the atmosphere of any meeting or conference room.
In the final minutes, we split the room into two groups and had a dance competition. This was simply hilarious. Colleagues could not believe what they were seeing from each other.
In just 30 minutes, the laughter, sights and sounds had definitely started the day off differently. What more could you ask of an energiser?
Our team left as dramatically as it had arrived, drumming and singing through the door. Left behind was the group of delegates, totally transformed, and it wasn’t even 9.15 am!
Gumboot dancing is the perfect ice breaker or energiser. It is easy for participants to master, does not require any set up or special equipment and delivers fun, positivity and success in abundance.
Our performers are steeped in traditional and cultural awareness but also have the communication skills to lead and facilitate any size of group.
The activity can be delivered with or without the giveaway wellington boots option and leaves participants with a smile on their faces! So, if you require something completely new to shake up your team and get the day off to a fantastic start, please contact us.
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