Surprising Uses for Online Improv
Updated: Aug 19, 2021
In May last year, I wrote this blog post about three ways to use online improv in lockdown. While all of them still stand, in the past 15 months I've found even more surprising uses for online improv. As a result I have decided to continue offering online improv workshops for the foreseeable future.
1. Crossing borders
In the earlier post I had suggested that online improv would be a great way for your team to keep in touch while working from home but what I hadn't appreciated was how far apart those homes could be. In every workshop I did there was at least one person calling from a different town, state or country from the others. One company had their team spread throughout Europe. Usually they would fly to and fro but there was no way that was happening in 2020/1!
It felt great to not only unite these groups but to know that everyone was included. Growing up in Scotland I often felt like I was missing out or having to make an extra effort because I didn't live in London. Perhaps a shift in focus to online will allow more people and employees to feel involved no matter where they are.
On the theme of FOMO... 2020 was a stressful year for people in all stages in their career but for some it definitely felt like the worst timing. Whether they were just starting a new job or were looking to branch out, quarantine felt like someone had pushed them off the career ladder.
Even if you're already established in your field, networking is necessary for keeping up to date, staying relevant and gaining clients.
Hosting an improv session for a large group of strangers online may sound terrifying but it was the best ice-breaker exercise. Networking can always feel awkward at first but in this environment you are on a level playing field, being guided around and meeting lots of different people all from the comfort of your own home.
3. A new light
Having structure in the midst of such chaos is generally a good thing. However, I think some of us have been surprised by how much of a "lockdown routine" we've settled into.
My favourite piece of feedback is hearing people say they saw themselves or others in a different light because of the workshops. We forget how much stress we hold on to and don't communicate. It's easy enough to pigeonhole people (or feel pigeonholed) in an office but when we're only seeing each other via a screen for an hour a day that can get even more restricting.
Taking time to not talk about work, to try something different and laugh with our colleagues is vital for feeling whole and connected, even if it's not in person.
I hope you are powering through and taking time for yourselves.
For a free consultation to discuss how I can help with your next online event, just email me here.