Improv

1407946145171Imagine an environment where all outcomes, including mistakes, massive and miniscule, are treated as sources of inspiration.

IMPROVISATION FOR ORGANIZATIONAL INNOVATION

Half-day, full-day, 3-day, extended 3 – 6 months self-designed sessions. Through Improv, you and your team will create a meaningful, learnable, and sustainable systems that you can use to increase productivity and have a better place to work.

Innovative work places exist! They are called healthy because the people there embrace change. These workplaces are also stable, because to live on the creative edge is now a requirement for competition. The alternative is to become…irrelevant. Lets not do that!  The 1st principle of Complexity Theory (from Surfing the Edge of Chaos) is: Equilibrium is a precursor to death. When a living system is in a state of equilibrium it is unaware:, thus unresponsive, to the changes happening around it. This places it as Maximum risk

Leaders are encouraging themselves and their workers to take risks, but still dormant in their understanding of the word risk is the notion that the unexpected is “unexpected”, and something to be overcome. That ain’t it. It may behoove us to create conditions wherein behaviors once considered risky are no longer perceived as such. They are simply the way we do things around here.

In the best theatre company I was ever a part of, our motto was, That sounds like a terrible idea. Lets try it!  We saved more time than we wasted, and were  galvanized behind a single strategy because we were all privy to the purpose, and all riding the same page.  When that page turned, we adjusted as a unit without dragging our feet.

Over the past several years I’ve worked with Tobias Mayer, teaching the Agile System (Scrum) of software development. The methodology is easy to comprehend, but difficult for many companies to adopt, partly because those who have historically communicated through documents are now assigned to self-organizing teams and a world of intense face-to-ace collaboration. It is futile to function in the Agile system with a mentality forged from traditional business culture. I bring the principles of improvisation into play for self-organized teams. These principles lay a foundation that keeps individuals and group in the creative mix , making them creative even when uninspired. They bring rhyme to the intellectual reasoning behind a shift from document driven communication to verbal, potent collaboration with other humans.

I studied improvisation so that I could become funny on stage in front of people. What I learned from the training was quite different. I learned to:

Listen
Honor
Be accountable
Be positive
Move things forward
Stay present
Reincorporate
Empathize
Reflect
Validate my own feelings and ideas
Surrender: My agenda, 
Negativity, 
Judgment, 
Control, 
Anticipation, and 
Pre-determinate listening

More than readying me for the stage, it improved my life! The rules and tools that lead to clear, accountable communication spilled over into my family, community and work relationships, altering them forever. In 1990, I designed my first workshop for DSHS workers in Washington State, introducing tools to help them deal with stress and change. Since then I have been visiting corporate cultures, installing a template for authentic, spontaneous interaction appropriate to any circumstance. What I bring to your group is first hand experience in my own field (performance), years of designing and facilitating organizational trainings, and a true mission to pass on the simple discipline that so enhanced my own life, to the people for whom it can have the most value. Your people.

 

IMPROVISATION FOR INDIVIDUAL EXPRESSION

Replace that which keeps you rigid with advanced mental flexibility. So you can be better at everything. It’s fun and fascinating.

Improv Workshops

Freehold 8-week class
Mondays, 6:30 – 9:30, January 25 – March 31 (no class Feb.22 – Freehold Faculty Fund Raiser) This is a basic class.
Freehold: 206-323-7499

One-Day Workshops
January 16, Saturday, 9:30 – 3:30   $95
Basic Improv
Stay Young! rejuvenate your brain! This class includes the first exercises most improvisers learn. It’s about listening in a slightly different way, and responding in a slightly simpler way. These exercises are really worth knowing. Call or email me to sign up: 206-551-4622
Location TBD

January 24, Sunday, 9:30 – 3:30    $95
Narrative Improv
You’ll practice five or six “isolating” story exercises. Some advance, some color, some add depth and some add experience.  Fun and interesting. Great for writers of all kinds. And anyone else. Call or email me to sign up: 206-551-4622
Location TBD