I’m not great at memorizing a speech. In fact, it’s really hard for me. But I can sing the lyrics to hundreds of songs with ease. And if there’s a new song that I like, I’m usually able to sing the lyrics after hearing that song just a few times. I bet you can too. Music and memory have a powerful link that enables us to internalize information that would otherwise be hard to hold on to. Why is this? It’s because music taps into our emotions and when we connect with something in an emotional way it makes an impression. Allowing ourselves to feel something puts us in the moment and allows us to be present. Being present can also be stated as being engaged. And of course, employee engagement is something every company wants. So why not use music and memory to help make that happen.
Music and Memory – Understanding Your Message
Whether it’s a speech you want to memorize, or your company’s mission or value statement, putting your message in a musical context can really help your workforce buy into what they’re selling. Plugging music into your message can help take an analytical, or hard to grasp, statement and make it both authentic and accessible.
Bring a popular song into a company meeting and start the meeting by playing the song. Then announce that the group will spend your meeting time re-writing the song lyrics to tell your company’s story, or your corporate mission or value statement. To develop your story into a lyric, you’ll need to talk about it in plain english. You’ll need to get everyone to share what they believe it is in their own words. When this happens, people begin to think about and understand the story in a very personal way.
You’ll start with lots of broad themes and specific ideas but you’ll have to whittle them down to what is really important. Why? Because a typical song doesn’t have a lot of words in it. The songwriting process forces you to distill your message into what’s vital and what resonates most – the essence of what you really want to say.
When you finish creating your lyrics, you’ll definitely want to sing them and guess what? By the time you’ve sung the song a few times it will be memorized. Music and memory compliment each other. When music is involved, you’ll learn and retain with less effort because you’re emotionally engaged. For your workforce, you’ll have moved them into territory in which they relate on a more genuine level with your company message.