Empowerment Program

     Empowering and Improving your Business            

          

BRAINSTORMING IMPROV.

Stimulate and Empower your ability to think outside the norm, and get new creative ideas flowing. Using Improv. techniques in a fun safe environment, you will discover numerous ways to:

                               1) Communicate and Debate Successfully

                               2) Clarify what you need to accomplish or achieve

                               3) Accept and Build on others’ ideas

                               4) Change plans or directions with ease

                               5) See Mistakes as (wonderful accidents)

 

SPEAKING / COMMUNICATING IMPROV.

Build and Empower your confidence, when speaking live, or on TV/Camera. Using Improv. techniques and exercises in a fun, safe environment, you can explore various ways to:

                             1)Command the Attention and Empower an Audience

                             2)Relax and Calm nerves

                             3)Be present in the Moment

                             4)Empower your spontaneity skills

                            5)Communicate your message/idea clearly and successfully

                                            

SALES PITCHING IMPROV.

Fully understand and own your sales pitch so you can go off script and Improvise when needed. Using Improv. techniques and exercises in a fun, creative, environment, you can explore numerous ways to:

                           1)Communicate and execute more successfully

                           2)Accepting and building on what’s being offered.

                           3)Always be closing / And Close more deals

                           4)Increase listening and observation skills

                           5)Change Directions with ease

                    

ENSEMBLE / TEAM DYNAMICS IMPROV.

Empower and Inspire a stronger more productive ensemble/team by increasing comradery, and trust. Help alleviate stress. Using Improv. techniques and exercise in a relaxed, fun and safe environment, you will explore various ways to:

                          1)Collaborate more productively, and effectively.

                          2)Accept and contribute in others’ ideas

                          3)Debate and Communicate more successfully

                         4) Build stronger Ensemble/Team relationships

 

Testimonials

 

Leif is an inspirational leader and teacher. His unique ability to draw out emotion is very engaging as well as his lovingly evil laugh. I truly enjoyed his introduction to improv class and plan to continue training with this experienced teacher. I highly recommend his classes and services. Thank you Leif!

Jheri HardawayAuthorMs. Jheri WorldWideNew York

Leif, I have to say that every time you hold an event our talent LOVE IT! I know that you normally deal with my assistants but I wanted to personally thank you for the excitement that you always leave out talent with. They keep coming back for more!

Sanabel Billan Office Director 230 West 39th Street, New York, NY 10018

Leif coached my son into the Mark Twain Middle school, La Guardia High School, AMDA, and got his career going. I am forever grateful. What makes Leif’s Improv. and Acting Playhouse more reputable and unique is that Leif has great relationships, and a solid reputation with the best New York agents, and casting directors. With his whole family working in the entertainment business, no wonder Leif’s Improv. & Acting Playhouse stands out above the rest.

BG Fox Network Brooklyn NY

Like all parents, I just thought my son was a good “school play” actor, and was fine with that. Leif saw something in my son that I NEVER did. Besides, fine tuning his skills, his friendship and words of wisdom are off the charts. My son has been on National T.V., was a co-star in a Feature Film, music video, major chain store commercial, you tube channel series, just to name a few. You cannot go wrong with Leif Riddell or Leif’s Improv. Acting Playhouse!

Newsma@aol.com

Christopher started Improv classes 2 years ago with Leif Riddell, not because he was into acting, but because he was struggling with his social interactions. Since then he has improved exponentially and has built lasting friendships. Thank you Leif for all you do to inspire the kids.

Melanie MD Brooklyn NY

Q: What are the facts/theories behind using improvisation in corporate training.?

A: Improvisation has many techniques and concepts that relate to business environments. The main foundation of improvisation is teamwork and support. It is about working together to build an ensemble, have engaging conversations and tell a story that is compelling for an audience.  Companies thrive by tapping into the creative talents of their employees. Innovation and creativity enhance productivity, accelerate capability and help sustain the competitive advantage. Companies must innovate to survive, and Improvisation is by nature – innovative! Improvisation is not only fun, it encourages individual choice, trust and risk.

Chris an improviser who's been teaching corporations to "yes-and" since 2004 (he counts Google, Facebook, Cisco, eBay, and Dropbox as clients), cites the millennial-stacked tech industry as leading the charge. "I've found that the more a leader within the organization has done Improvisation before, the more likely a company or division within the company is likely to embrace Improvisation." As millennials age into higher and higher position of power, Improvisation Empowerment theory will continue to shape corporate thinking.

Improvisation “draws on time-honored principles. They must be present in the moment, listening carefully, and contributing freely. These skills turn out to be particularly useful in workplaces that rely on adaptability … Studies have shown that people can improve their communication skills and lower their anxiety with regular practice. Improv’s low-stakes training increases the likelihood that team members will feel comfortable communicating in a variety of work situations.  Forbes Article, “Why Improvisation Empowerment training is Great Business training.”

Q: How are Improvisation and business life intertwined?                                                    

A: Business, like Improvisation, thrives on the exchange of information via dynamic conversations and excellent team work. Both require the need of original ideas. One of the golden rules of Improvisation is “Yes, And” which means to take what has been given to you by a scene partner and grow that idea even further. In a business environment, this means don’t make your teammates do all the communicating/work—everyone needs to contribute, help move projects forward with new/fresh ideas. It means “Yes, I understand your idea, AND here’s what I think can take it to the next level, or course correct to a new or different direction.” Duke, UCLA, MIT, and Stanford's business schools are all offering Improvisation classes.

 

“A fundamental principle of improv is listening and accepting any initiation that’s made on the stage. I want my managers to listen and respond to their employees’ perceptions, not ignore them. Managers have to be open to accepting any kind of initiation.” – Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter

 Array

Q: Why is Improv. training particularly important for current leaders, CEO’s, business owners, and aspiring leaders?

A:   Productive, effective, dynamic, and long lasting leaders are amazing individuals who continuously develop themselves. Leaders must use emotional intelligence to influence others.  Improvisation helps leaders to better express themselves, relate to others and cope with operating on point. Improvisation training provides a safe and fun place for leaders to energize, learn and practice new techniques, and learn how to better collaborate with others.  Enhanced capability in these areas directly impacts teams and productivity.

Aspiring leaders and individual contributors can use improvisation skills in the same way as leaders. Though application would appear a bit different and would focus on building better relationships with their peers, using creativity to create new ideas and to better communicate those ideas to their overseeing manager or team.  There are plenty of companies that exemplify what happens when you fail to embrace change —Blockbuster, Radio Shack and Kodak are examples of companies that did not embrace change, did not take advantage of unexpected opportunities and did not adapt to an evolving consumer landscape. One that did… Play Doh.

Improv is getting to be less of a hard sell to the Fortune 500. Considering over 10.000 people will take an Improv. Empowerment class this year. the odds are getting better and better that a future CEO will have done their time in the Improv Empowerment trenches. 

Q: What’s the most common shortcoming when it comes to interpersonal skills? How do you address them?   A: The most common shortcoming I have witnessed in our workshops is a fear of public speaking and a lack of awareness of how to professionally support someone else’s ideas. People hear improv and are automatically afraid of coming up with something on the spot, or speaking in front of a group. We address this fear right away by setting a ground rule that this is a safe and supportive environment. We emphasize that in the next two hours, there are no mistakes, only great ideas and all attendees will be supported in whatever they say. Our Improvisation instructor or team leads exercises on providing support and creating a comfortable environment. Several of our exercises explore how sharing your ideas, asking questions and driving conversation is a way to support others. Lack of awareness of how to professionally support other’s ideas is a common challenge.  Attendees know how to tell someone “good job” or “that was a good idea---congrats”, but they don’t initially realize that adding to someone’s idea is a compliment and a way to further support them in exploring the idea to its full potential.  This also gives them self-confidence.

 “Studying improvisation literally changed my life. The rules of improvisation appealed to me not only as a way of creating comedy, but as a worldview. In improv there are no mistakes, only opportunities.” – Tina Fey in Bossypants

Q: How does our training help business types overcome stage fright when speaking in a professional setting?

A: It’s a well-known that public speaking is listed as one of the biggest human fears! We have an entire workshop dedicated to building comfort around giving presentations.  The workshop focuses on preparation, visualization, practicing presentation delivery and receiving feedback, all with confidence. We also focus on the power of silence and teach tactics that allow presenters to pause, and consider their response before responding to questions. Our workshops involve interactive group activities that put people on the spot but in a safe and healthy way.  These experiences challenge and build confidence.  Some of the most rewarding feedback we have received is from people who are terrified of speaking in groups and were wary of how they would do during the workshop—some of these people had “break-out” experiences that resulted in a more positive and encouraging speaking experience.  It’s all about practice and positive experiences.

Of course, there are spoilsports, people who reject improv training because they think they don’t need it or it doesn’t apply to work. From our experience and other companies that have experienced it,  it washes away really fast, because they learn that this isn’t cleverness training or joke training. It’s really about the infrastructure of communicating and connecting.”

In fact, studies have shown that people can improve their communication skills and lower their anxiety with regular practice. Improv’s low-stakes training increases the likelihood that team members will feel comfortable communicating in a variety of work situations. “Yes, and” is the key. When you say yes to something and find a way to make it work, you actually are coming up with solutions, I believe there’s a longer-lasting satisfaction to saying yes and affirming things.”

The great thing about our workshops is that while one of our staff instructors are facilitating, the attendees are 100% fully engaged with each other.  We look for attendees who struggle with our introductory activities and we lend more support to them during exercises in the beginning and middle of the workshop.  We exploit signs of strengths and give them a bit more freedom and creative room as the workshop progresses. Attendees can participate at different levels and we make sure to facilitate towards each individual’s comfort zone, while pushing their boundary in a healthy way.

By the end of the workshop, introverted attendees are typically laughing, engaging and interacting with the group on a higher level. They’ve taken risks, they’ve succeeded, and they’ve tried some new things that didn’t work out as they might have expected.  Ultimately, they feel positively supported in their experience.

Q: Why is role-playing so important in corporate training?

​A: “Role-playing is an excellent tool for preparing for new or difficult situations”.

Q: Can improv and role-playing build confidence and character? If so, how?

A: Improv. role-playing, confidence and character are deeply related. Role-playing helps to build confidence, learn from mistakes in a risk-free environment, and better understand best practices. Improv. is all about role-playing and trying out new techniques in a safe environment. Improvisation exercises are basically role-play opportunities where attendees practice specific techniques for communicating creatively and spontaneously. These techniques lighten the communication process and highlight best practices for interpersonal communication. Being able to communicate so that your audience fully hears your message, and not only in a way that you are most familiar. You will learn to present your main idea or point, and then add in the details so everyone can follow. You learn to allow others to participate, and provide support, and understand how and when to change technique for maximum impact.  Improvisation exercises have levels of complexity that challenge different communication styles.

 Confidence increases with preparation and from receiving consistent positive results. The role-playing nature of improv gives plenty of opportunity to practice, learn, and achieve results.  Developing character comes into play through new experiences, challenges and successes—all of which are included in our improv workshops.

Leif’s Inspiration and Empowerment center uses some of the most important modules that help companies focus on competencies relevant to business: Building your team and collaborating, Presentation skills, Dynamic and effective communication. Being responsible, and taking initiative. Thinking quickly on your feet, especially in highly stressed situations or when there is a deadline.

Why Business Owners and Employees should study Improv.

“Entrepreneurs Must Skillfully Perform on Two Stages, Not Forfeiting Home for Company”.

Keep your employees connected, and engaged.   Improve, Inspire, and empower their overall wellness in the workplace.  Below are a few of the Corporate Empowering workshops we offer.

We can also combine and customize one for your individual company needs.

 Collaborated Brainstorming Improv.

Stimulate and Empower your ability to think outside the norm, and get new creative ideas flowing. Using Improv. techniques in a fun safe environment, you will discover numerous ways to:

                               1) Communicate and Debate Successfully

                               2) Clarify what you need to accomplish or achieve

                               3) Accept and Build on others’ ideas

                               4) Change plans or directions with ease

                               5) See Mistakes as (wonderful accidents)

 SPEAKING / COMMUNICATING IMPROV.

Build and Empower your confidence, when speaking live, or on TV/Camera. Using Improv. techniques and exercises in a fun, safe environment, you can explore various ways to:

                              1)Command the Attention and Empower an Audience

                             2)Relax and Calm nerves

                             3)Be present in the Moment

                             4)Empower your spontaneity skills

                            5)Communicate your message/idea clearly and successfully

 

SALES PITCHING IMPROV.

Fully understand and own your sales pitch so you can go off script and Improvise when needed. Using Improv. techniques and exercises in a fun, creative, environment, you can explore numerous ways to:

                           1)Communicate and execute more successfully

                           2)Accepting and building on what’s being offered.

                           3)Always be closing / And Close more deals

                           4)Increase listening and observation skills

                           5)Change Directions with ease

ENSEMBLE / TEAM DYNAMICS IMPROV.

 

Empower and Inspire a stronger more productive ensemble/team by increasing comradery, and trust. Help alleviate stress. Using Improv. techniques and exercise in a relaxed, fun and safe environment, you will explore various ways to:

                          1)Collaborate more productively, and effectively.

                          2)Accept and contribute in others’ ideas

                          3)Debate and Communicate more successfully

                          4)Build stronger Ensemble/Team relationships

                          5) See mistakes as wonderful accidents, and opportunities

Why Attend an Improv workshop?  It’s not about becoming a comedy performer.  It’s not even only about becoming a better speaker.  The skills you learn in an improv workshop will be applied to all parts of your life.  They provide building blocks for business success.  Improv skills teach you to have more fun in life. They also teach you to be in the moment. In the moment is where opportunity shows up.  In life, opportunity shows up only occasionally. If you are not in the moment you risk losing out on opportunity. If it happens once, you can forgive yourself. But if it happens more than once, then you are responsible for it, and will kick yourself for not jumping on it when it shows up. Believe me, if you don’t someone else will.  What is holding you back? Fear? Lack of Confidence? Do you really work well with others?

1.Sharpen Leadership Skills.  An amazing thing I’ve learned after presenting Improv. workshops for more than ten years are this:  There is no such thing as a weak Improv. player.  There are only skilled Improv. players who are not skilled enough to make the weaker players look good. When a worker has substandard performance, the question is: Are YOU good enough to lead, motivate, and work with them.  You are responsible.  Make them look good.  Bring out their best.  This isn’t a gimmick.  This is a reality of life.  The responsibility and power lies with you.  Lead by example. What would the world be like if everyone was present for you, if everyone listened to you, if everyone treated you like a genius, if everyone agreed with you, if everyone trusted you.  What would it be like if each of your employees experienced that kind of world. It’s your job to be the “someone” who creates that experience for them.  Every choice you make affects other people.

  1. Build Strong Ensembles/Teams.   You’ll learn strong skills in agreement and consensus.  The Improv. principle of YES AND teaches you to agree with others and to add to that agreement.  You will also understand that YES does not mean you agree, it simply means that you hear the other person.  It moves you forward.  BUT is an eraser and stops forward progress.  You learn to treat others as though they were a genius.  You develop the habit of going with the flow and trusting the group.  Learn to say yes to at least one stupid idea a week.  That, of course, is an impossible challenge.  There is no such thing as a stupid idea.  Improv. games are also great for mixers

  2. Build Your Confidence.  In life, the prize often goes not to the fast but to

the bold.  Not to the quick but to the confident.  Improv training boosts your confidence.  Whenever you are personally challenged, it builds your confidence.  You become a better risk taker.  You learn to fail gracefully.  It gives you confidence.  And confidence enhances your performance and competence in the eyes of others.

  1. Develop Listening skills.  Listening is more than hearing.  Listening is also watching.  Listening is understanding. Body language, gestures, facial expressions, and the tone of voice. Communication is more than facts.  Communication is watching for feelings and intention.  Improv teaches you all that, and how you can contribute by NOT saying something.

  2. Inspire, Empower, and Stimulate Your Creativity.  Creativity is sometimes the result of talent, accident, or the product of self-confidence.  Improv training can help in you in all areas.  Improv teaches you to be open to possibilities and see the alternatives.  You become less rigid and more flexible.  You learn to contribute to the ideas of others, creating new possibilities. This often leads to amazing results, and empowers the ensemble.   Improv gives you a better understanding of that view of life.

  3. Have Fun in the workplace.  A workplace with no play is usually rigid and inflexible.  Improv teaches you to play.  Use it to start the day playing a game with your ensemble/team.  Use improv games to warm up before a meeting or brainstorm session. You’ll find that your employees will be more productive and creative in that type of environment.

 At Leif’s Inspiration and Empowerment Center we strive to always:

*Acknowledge every situation and desired outcome as unique
*Approach individuals with empathy
*Identify strengths and potential vulnerabilities
*Provide the tools and support to quickly to overcome obstacles
*Customize sessions based on your precise needs

*Create an environment that inspires more productive teams

  

            Empower and IMPROV. your Business

LEIF'S IMPROVISATION PLAYHOUSE

“Be Present, Speak up, Take Action!”

Stay in the moment. And Seize the Opportunities!

Thanks for all the support!

www.leifsimprovplayhouse.com

www.facebook.com/Leifsimprovplayhouse?ref=tn_tnmn

Why Business Owners and Employees should Study Improv.

“Entrepreneurs Must Skillfully Perform on Two Stages, Not Forfeiting Home for Company”. 

Keep your employees connected, and engaged.   Improve, Inspire, and empower their overall wellness in the workplace.

 

Why Attend an Improv class.  It’s not about becoming a comedy performer.  It’s not even about becoming a better speaker.  The skills you learn in an improv workshop will be applied to all parts of your life.  They provide building blocks for business success.  Improv skills teach you to have more fun in life. They also teach you to be in the moment. In the moment is where opportunity shows up.  In life, opportunity shows up only occasionally. If you are not in the moment you risk losing out on opportunity. If it happens once, you can forgive yourself. But if it happens more than once, then you are responsible for it, and will kick yourself for not jumping on it when it shows up. Believe me, if you don’t someone else will.  What is holding you back? Fear? Lack of Confidence? Do you really work well with others?

Sharpen Leadership Skills.  An amazing thing I’ve learned after presenting Improv. workshops for more than ten years is this:  There is no such thing as a weak Improv. player.  There are only skilled Improv. planers who are not skilled enough to make the weaker players look good. When a worker has substandard performance, the question is: Are YOU good enough to lead, motivate, and work with them.  You are responsible.  Make them look good.  Bring out their best.  This isn’t a gimmick.  This is a reality of life.  The responsibility and power lies with you.  Lead by example. What would the world be like if everyone was present for you, if everyone listened to you, if everyone treated you like a genius, if everyone agreed with you, if everyone trusted you.  What would it be like if each of your employees experienced that kind of world. It’s your job to be the “someone” who creates that experience for them.  Every choice you make affects other people.

Build Strong Ensembles/Teams.   You’ll learn strong skills in agreement and consensus.  The Improv. principle of YES AND teaches you to agree with others and to add to that agreement.  You will also understand that YES does not mean you agree, it simply means that you hear the other person.  It moves you forward.  BUT is an eraser and stops forward progress.  You learn to treat others as though they were a genius.  You develop the habit of going with the flow and trusting the group.  Learn to say yes to at least one stupid idea a week.  That, of course, is an impossible challenge.  There is no such thing as a stupid idea.  Improv. games are also great for mixers.

  1. Build Your Confidence.  In life, the prize often goes not to the fast but to the bold.  Not to the quick but to the confident.  Improv training boosts your confidence.  Whenever you are personally challenged, it builds your confidence.  You become a better risk taker.  You learn to fail gracefully.  It gives you confidence.  And confidence enhances your performance and competence in the eyes of others

  2. Develop Listening skills.  Listening is more than hearing.  Listening is also watching.  Listening is understanding. Communication is more than facts.  Communication is watching for feelings and intention.  Improv teaches you that often you contribute by NOT saying something.

  3. Inspire, Empower, and Stimulate Your Creativity.  Creativity is sometimes the result of talent, accident, or the product of self confidence.  Improv training can help in both areas.  Improv teaches you to be open to possibilities and see the alternatives.  You become less rigid and more flexible.  You learn to contribute to the ideas of others, creating new possibilities. This often leads to amazing results, and empowers the ensemble.   Improv gives you a better understanding of that view of life.

  4. Have Fun in the workplace.  A workplace with no play is usually rigid and inflexible.  Improv teaches you to play.  Use it to start the day playing a game with your ensemble/team.  Use improv games to warm up before a meeting or brainstorm session. You’ll find that your employees will be more productive and creative in that type of environment.

 

 

 At Leif’s Inspiration and Empowerment Center we strive to always: 

*Acknowledge every situation and desired outcome as unique
*Approach individuals with empathy
*Identify strengths and potential vulnerabilities
*Provide the tools and support to quickly to overcome obstacles
*Customize sessions based on your precise needs

*Create an environment that inspires more productive teams

 

Here are what some other companies are saving about IMPROVing your Business:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/how-to-use-improv-to-jumpstart-your-business-144852425.html

 

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2017/03/09/three-ways-you-can-hone-your-leadership-skills-with-improv/#6981e506435c

 

http://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2015/may/6/what-business-leaders-can-learn-from-improv-actors/

 

http://www.inc.com/minda-zetlin/4-leadership-lessons-improv-actors-know.html

 

http://www.businessinnovationfactory.com/summit/story/improv-business-yes-and…see-how-it-works

 

http://www.npr.org/2012/12/05/166484466/it-s-improv-night-at-business-school

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/19/magazine/19Industry-t.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

 

http://bats.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/01/yankees-take-a-break-to-brush-up-on-their-comedic-skills/

 

http://www.holmesreport.com/opinion-info/10645/The-Cost-Of-Poor-Communications.aspx

 

http://www.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/08/12/rs.how.to.think.on.feet/index.html?iref=newssearch

 

http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/246898

 

LEIF'S IMPROVISATION PLAYHOUSE

“Be Present, Speak up, Take Action!”

Stay in the moment.. And Seize the Opportunities!

Thanks for all the support!

www.leifsimprovplayhouse.com

www.facebook.com/Leifsimprovplayhouse?ref=tn_tnmn