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No one expects the unexpected

The fact is, most of our lives are improvised! Particularly in business, the ability to react effectively in the face of rapidly changing or unexpected circumstances is one of the most important skills we must learn. And the theatre (paradoxically) provides a structured way of exploring how to do this.

Improvisation lies behind much of the work that we do. It's used in all role play, creativity and problem solving, attitude change workshops, team work, play-in-a-day and most interpersonal skills. It's the ability to accept things (and people) the way they are, rather than the way we would wish them to be. It's the ability to put yourself in another person's shoes. It's the recognition that your internal attitude greatly affects your behaviour.

Here are seven principles that underpin improvisation, which support the development of work-related skills:

  • Breaking rules can solve problems
    • If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got

  • Change is a good thing
    • Change what you do until you get what you want

  • One person's behaviour will create another's
    • How you treat someone will often determine how they treat you. What goes around comes around

  • Preconceptions can get in the way
    • Judgemental behaviours and attitudes can create barriers to good teamwork

  • Failure is a positive force
    • How do we learn to walk? By falling over!

  • What people do is not who they are
    • Separate the act from the person, as most people try to do what they think is the right thing in the right way at the right time

  • We are not only judged by others but also judged by ourselves
    • So try giving feedback in a positive way AND receiving it as a positive comment

For more information about the application of improvisation to your business contact Nigel Higgs.

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Actors Mean Business Ltd, 6 Penns Lane, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, UK, B72 1BD
Tel: 0121 350 1112   Email: Nigel@actorsmeanbusiness.co.uk