The lights come on. You see five performers lined up against the stage wall, their bodies tensed for action, their eyes and ears at full attention, eager to jump out and create a scene. It’s show time, and you’re with your friends in the audience, awaiting the laughs the improvisational players will deliver.
In the hour that follows, the performers create a full mini-play, complete with characters, locations and plot. You walk away; face hurting from laughter, saying “how do they do that? They’re so clever!”
What did they do, how did they do it and why should you care?
The what is that without planning or scripting, the performers worked together to create a dynamic show all made up on the spot. They built upon each other’s moves in a way that sustained the creativity and advanced the story, leading to high audience engagement and laughter.
The how is that the players were completely in sync, following one another’s cues, toggling the lead back and forth from scene to scene, ultimately creating a great outcome together. Is this starting to sound familiar?
We need this in business, too.
Improv offers us insight into vital skills that make this kind of performance possible. A high performance business team does much the same as an improv troupe. The players engage in:
- Listening intensely and in ways that involve all team players
- Valuing and making use of what others bring to the table
- Making bold moves that generate innovative results
- Actively and intentionally supporting fellow players
What would your team be like if they did more of these things? Where is it happening or not in your organization? As we dive further into 2017, consider how your team is performing. Business improv training can turn your team into an in sync, highly engaged group of players who lead, innovate, and create great outcomes together.