Enliven Zoom with the Sound of Music

Last week my colleague Rachel Nicolosi and I started a Zoom gathering with music. As people entered the virtual space the sound of relief and surprise were audible. Some individuals even thanked us for the music in Chat and aloud. All this despite the fact we only played music 2 minutes!

The fact is, music can be healing, calming, energizing and joyous. So, why don’t more of us use it as a tool in this time of extreme Zoom fatigue?

I suggest we should.  

Here is some music to listen to as you read this blog… Consider how it feels to read with it on.

Reasons to Use Music

There are many reasons music can be helpful in your virtual meetings, trainings, and gatherings. Here are a few:

  1. Help build safety. Joining a new virtual gathering can take some adjusting. Music helps everyone ease in and minimize any discomfort felt with the silence that is often experienced in the minutes before the official start.
  2. Offer a soft enter. In this time of Zoom fatigue, jumping right into work when a meeting starts can be challenging and hard on us emotionally. Music can soften the start (and closing) to minimize the ‘tyranny of the urgent’ many of us feel in our day-to-day work. Yup, it can feel like a short but helpful break.
  3. Invite more enjoyment in our work. When music is playing in the 10-minute intervals of work during a working meeting session, I may feel more joy in the task. Try it!

Ways to Use Music

There are multiple ways to insert music into our virtual sessions. Consider these:

  1. While participants enter the virtual platform. Most often people arrive at different times. Whether you open the virtual space 10, 5 or 2 minutes before the starting time, it can be lovely to be welcomed with some well-selected music.
  2. At the end as the group departs. There is usually not much time between saying ‘good-bye’ and people leaving. However, you can say your closing words while the music is on (softly) or if there is a closing task with people leaving when they are ready, music can be a lovely addition.
  3. During a solo activity or group work. Working with music can greatly help energy and focus. Instrumental music is often best for this.
  4. While completing a survey. A great way to get 100% survey completion is to ask participants to complete it during your final live virtual session. Offering a bit of ambience through some well-selected music can be welcome.

Important Technical Tips

Using music intentionally to deepen reflection, make the work easier, connect to each other, or to respect the pressure many people feel, is good. However, knowing how to best use the technology to set this up well is paramount.

To maximize success, you need to ensure the music plays through each personal computer. Here is how to do it.

One more thing

Allow me to leave with this piece of music.


When can you image using music in your virtual sessions?

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Jeanette Romkema is GLP Senior Partner, Knowledge Broker, as well as Partnerships & Network Leader. 

Here are more blogs by Jeanette.

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