IMPROV IN THE WORKPLACE

Yes, Yes, YES! Improv Play gives your HR Team a Kick!

Author:  Dawn Burke

 

You know the restaurant “yes, yes, YES” scene in When Harry Met Sally?  Don’t you love it when the older lady turns to the waitress and says, “I’ll have what she is having”?  Classic.  It’s also a line that was completely improved.  Not scripted, not debated for hours, but created on the spot in a flash of inspiration.  Inspiration fed by staying open to the actions and ideas of the actors and “going-with-the-moment”.  Going with the moment in this case, created one of the most memorable movie lines ever.

Going with the moment in improv terms is simply “saying yes”. One of the best ways to learn to tap into the power of “yes” is by studying theatre improvisation techniques (sometimes just called improv). Improvisation techniques are interactive, typically involve little pre-planning, and are created collaboratively.  If you don’t think you know what improvisation is, you do.  If you’ve ever watched Saturday Night Live, Second City, or Who’s Line Is It Anyway, you’ve watch improv techniques in play.

If there is one group in corporate America that can benefit from learning the power of yes, it is HR.  If you’ve read Fistful of Talent, I’ll skip the missive on how crappy HR folks can be when they are saddled with being the police-y, “no-men”, blah.

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Unprepared, don’t care: applying improv to the workplace

Author:  Caren Spigland

 

"As a writer and creative director by profession, preparing, rewriting, editing, critiquing, proofing, and second-guessing are what I do. And what I know.

By contrast, the practice of improv comedy is like writing with no brief, no outline, no cynicism, and especially—no filter. It’s like posting a selfie with no makeup on. It’s a come-as-you-are party. It’s doing that presentation in your underwear. It’s—okay, you get it.

Practice “Yes, and”

No article on the benefits of improv would be without a discussion of its most fundamental principle, “Yes, and.” (Yes, improv has a tagline!) All this means is that you should always agree with your scene partner (“Yes”), and add something to what was stated (“and”)."

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Why Improv Training is Great Business Training

Author:  Jesse Scinto

 

“If you’re not funny, there’s no real-life consequence,” Rick Andrews tells students in his improv comedy class. “People just don’t think you’re funny. That is not a big deal.” Then he exclaims, “Okay, let’s get two people up there!” The next scene begins.

 

How does improv training improve communication?

 

The premise is simple. Improv performers don’t know what will happen onstage until they're up there. Each scene begins with a suggestion from the audience. The performers start with that prompt, making up the story as they go along. Although they improvise, the process draws on time-honored principles—the first among them being “yes, and.”

 

Simply put, “yes, and” means performers accept whatever their scene partners do or say as part of the reality of the scene and then build on it with their own contributions. They must be present in the moment, listening carefully, and contributing freely. These skills turn out to be particularly useful in workplaces that rely on adaptability.

 

 

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Why Every Boss Should Take an Improv Class

Author:  Kathryn Vasel

 

“If you’re not funny, there’s no real-life consequence,” Rick Andrews tells students in his improv comedy class. “People just don’t think you’re funny. That is not a big deal.” Then he exclaims, “Okay, let’s get two people up there!” The next scene begins.

 

How does improv training improve communication?

 

The premise is simple. Improv performers don’t know what will happen onstage until they're up there. Each scene begins with a suggestion from the audience. The performers start with that prompt, making up the story as they go along. Although they improvise, the process draws on time-honored principles—the first among them being “yes, and.”

 

Simply put, “yes, and” means performers accept whatever their scene partners do or say as part of the reality of the scene and then build on it with their own contributions. They must be present in the moment, listening carefully, and contributing freely. These skills turn out to be particularly useful in workplaces that rely on adaptability.

 

 

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