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Getting “Happy” with Microsoft’s Human Resources Division


Here at Drum Cafe West, we’re fortunate to do something we love that happens to be incredibly fun each and every day. We have the opportunity to meet thousands of people every month and unite teams from all over the globe through rhythm. Each interactive corporate teambuilding event we create is fully customized to the organization we’re working with, and our latest event is one of our favorites to date.  We had the privilege of drumming with Microsoft for their 2014 Global HR Conference. The event and the results were extraordinary!

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Being a global organization with so many moving components, Microsoft called us in to strengthen the ties and connections across the human resource functions of their entire company. Our program was the closing of a 3-day conference, so our main goal was to leave the group feeling energized and eager to continue sharing with and learning from one another throughout the rest of the year. Recently, Microsoft brought in new CEO, Satya Nadella. Nadella is driving the company in a slightly different direction than his predecessor, making it even more critical that the team address the over arching issues for Microsoft right now—unifying individuals and departments into one Microsoft with the goal of being customer centric, competing in markets rather than dominating them. From administrative assistants through executives, all levels of the department were present, bringing our grand total to over 1,500 attendees from 61 different countries. By the time we got in to give our presentation, the room was electric.

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Our keynote touched on many of our favorite topics—the spirit of Ubuntu, how collaboration helps drive innovation, their milestone achievements from 2013 and much more. In our initial conversations with leadership about plans for this conference, we learned about the specific topics that they wanted us to delve into—standard for our programs. However, the highlight of the program for both us and the team at Microsoft was the closing piece, which was designed by us around their theme for the entire event. By now, we hope everyone has heard Pharrell’s smash single, “Happy,” and if you haven’t, we certainly hope you will enjoy this version! For the human resources team at Microsoft, this song resonated deeply with their organizational culture, and so we felt it important to their team to build it into our closing program. To say that they loved it would be an understatement.

We started off by having different sections of the room play the various rhythms to build the base of the song—then we started to play the recording. Check out the video, and sing along!

“Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you know what happiness is to you
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do”

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We want to send our deepest thanks to Microsoft for not only choosing us to close this incredible event, but also for challenging us to bring something totally unique and original to their program. We’re always ready and willing to bring our clients’ dreams to reality—and we think this collaboration was exceptionally powerful and fun. Talk about uniting, uplifting and inspiring!

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