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Year in Renew

It’s no wonder that the movie “Up in the Air” resonated with so many people. It played on our base fear that one day, we’ll lose our jobs – just like that. I hate to think of how that mentality affects daily performance at work. I’m sure there are studies out by now, showing how job insecurity affects concentration and productivity. That’s a tough cycle. Well, I’m looking at the last 18 months – reflecting on what we experienced here at Drum Cafe, and I do believe that as I type this, we are spinning towards a good cycle – with lots of lessons learned.

When I facilitated Drum Cafe programs in 2009, my message was pretty consistent: stay in the game and deeply dedicate yourself to the people still playing on the field with you. Know their strengths, protect their weaknesses, and provide the security and support that you want to get in return. I was acutely aware that any empty seats I saw in the audience reflected missing people who probably were not returning. Moral was tested and I felt it too. Drum Cafe had lost some big gigs – from customers who’ve been long time partners with us. Programs for 600 people in Denver, 1000 people in Vegas – both were cancelled due do to ‘a shift in priorities’.

It’s way past time for new year’s resolutions, so now it’s interesting to take a read on what 2009 means for 2010.  For instance, Polycom cancelled our program for their sales and partner conference for 1000 people in 2009. They reinstated us in 2010 and we just kicked off an amazing event for them. If this is any indication of where things are heading, I am all smiles. But I’m also grounded in the reality that we have to stay extremely flexible and relevant for all of our clients. There are twists and turns on the road to recovery and we’re taking them with a steady, cool pace.

Drum Cafe programs are designed to energize and focus people. Our methodologies are also rooted by the simplicity of making big things happen with what you’ve got in your hands, right in front of you. A small drum can make a glorious sound, and many small drums can move the earth. Sometimes, less is more, especially when there is clear intention and collaboration. 2010 is not about fear of losing. It’s about lessons learned, concentration and constant communication with those around you. When I’m on stage drumming with 1000 people, it so clear that this is true. Maybe we just needed a tough year to get us all back in rhythm together.


In rhythm and joy –

Natalie Spiro

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