Communication skills are considered a foremost important qualification for any job. A key ingredient in building a strong team and an expertise that is essential to every employer. So how do you improve your communication skills? Did you know that every conversation is an improvisation? This means it’s not just the jazz musicians or the comedy show actors that are improvisors, we all are improvisors in one way or the other. In order to build trust and encourage the buildup of relationships, you need to work towards creating impactful conversations that are both engaging and enlightening at the same time.
Improvisation is more than just making things up to get the audience laughing. It actually focuses upon establishing mutually valuable conversations. Here’s a look at some essential skills that improvisation teaches us and which are vital for success in just about anything – job interviews, team building, employee recruiting and retention.
Stay in the Moment
Rather than planning what you are going to say next, focus more upon what your scene partner is saying at that moment. Listen carefully and try not to occupy your mind with what you plan to say next, while the person is speaking. Accept what they have shared with appreciation and answer impulsively and supportively, that’s how the fun and engagement arises.
Appreciate The Other Person’s Conversation By Saying Thank You
Improv shows teach individuals to say thank you before responding to whatever the person has to say. For instance, if an unsatisfied customer calls you to record a complaint, your first reaction is to appreciate them for highlighting the situation by saying thank you. You then move on to explore the situation in-depth and understand where the problem lies.
Support the other Person & Don’t Interrupt
Improvisation is all about creating a positive experience, eliminating any signs of judgment. Always keep in mind that you are not in a conversation to contend or prove yourself superior instead, you are in it to assist the other person express themselves properly. Let your partner complete expressing himself or herself and then respond accordingly.
Trying Saying ‘yes and’ Instead of ‘yes but’
When you respond by saying ‘yes, but…,’ you will notice that is generally shuts out the other person’s contribution to the conversation. While on the other hand, saying ‘yes and…’ shows that you listened to the entire conversation and will explore possible solutions. This means you are open to new ideas and it is at this point creativity starts to follow and solutions are revealed.
Don’t Over Think Your Responses
Improv shows teach you to be spontaneous, which means the actors aren’t given much time to over think their responses, instead, they come up with impulsive and quick answers which makes the shows fun and interesting. Similarly, while conversing with another person, refrain from trying to provide impressive and most appropriate responses. If you think too hard for answers, it’s most likely that the other person will see that you’ve tuned out and this is the last thing you them to see.
Improv shows are a great way to improve your public speaking skills and converse confidently with a massive audience when necessary. Register for an improv class and find out many more secrets of enhancing your public speaking skills. I stated with the Improv Dojo and so can you!
These are the experiences of students past and present