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Getting Your Business Ready for a Whole New World
Thoughts

Getting Your Business Ready for a Whole New World

In this uncertain climate, strong and forward thinking leadership will be more vital than ever…

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Work in Process
Thoughts

Work in Process

You want to provide an opportunity to fail early on and when the stakes are…

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Blending Science and Comedy to Fix The Fault in Employee Defaults
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Blending Science and Comedy to Fix The Fault in Employee Defaults

Married together, comedy and behavioral science can open all of us to accepting our own…

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New Year's Resolution:
Thoughts

New Year's Resolution: "Know Your Audience, Know Your Talent"

How well do you know your employees? And, how much are you willing to invest…

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5 Ways to Totally Blow Through Your 2016 Budget
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5 Ways to Totally Blow Through Your 2016 Budget

By Marilyn Cox – Vice President of Marketing and CRM Year-end budget spending…

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Can Memorizing a Phone Number Make You Eat Cake?
Thoughts

Can Memorizing a Phone Number Make You Eat Cake?

Improvisation provides you actual practice in playing with the fast and slow parts of your…

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5 Ways to be the Hero of Meeting Planning
Thoughts

5 Ways to be the Hero of Meeting Planning

So how do you, the planner, become the hero of the meeting? When you’ve got…

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In 1800, Musicians Stopped Improvising...What Happened Next?
Thoughts

In 1800, Musicians Stopped Improvising...What Happened Next?

Essentially, the old system can’t hold. It works against the natural curiosity of individuals. The…

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An Improviser’s Guide to Finding Insight Or, Five Ways To Get from Data to Insight
Thoughts

An Improviser’s Guide to Finding Insight Or, Five Ways To Get from Data to Insight

Data will always be important, but insight is what makes the people important. The ones…

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Improvisation as Habit and Productivity Enabler
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Improvisation as Habit and Productivity Enabler

Once fear and shame are out of the picture, we can not only look at…

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Managing The Unexpected
Thoughts

Managing The Unexpected

Businesses can either thrive or be undone by internal and external force…

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Improvisation and The Power of Habit
Thoughts

Improvisation and The Power of Habit

Knowing who you are - in relation to the world, to your friends, to your…

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We Sell Glasses
Thoughts

We Sell Glasses

Improvisation recognizes that miscomprehension is the normative state of things.

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Is your company a hotbed of harassment?  Maybe; 3 Signs That Your Organization is in the Risky Zone.
Thoughts

Is your company a hotbed of harassment? Maybe; 3 Signs That Your Organization is in the Risky Zone.

True workplace harassment and bullying is much more nuanced, much more complex, and much more…

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The Danger of Boardroom Guessing
Thoughts

The Danger of Boardroom Guessing

Put people in a safe space to speak the truth and then ask them what…

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Starting From No Perfection
Thoughts

Starting From No Perfection

We are in the muck and we’ve always been. And it’s those of us who…

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I Went Back to School and Learned How to Open a Door
Thoughts

I Went Back to School and Learned How to Open a Door

Fail at opening a door – or anything. Get uncomfortable and fail repeatedly. You’ll be…

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Mindfulness and Improvisation
Thoughts

Mindfulness and Improvisation

More present and attentive behaviors can only improve the internal dynamics of co-workers as well…

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Lights, Camera...College
Thoughts

Lights, Camera...College

You need to let go; you must allow for failures; you are rarely in control;…

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We're all the Fifth Beatle
Thoughts

We're all the Fifth Beatle

Better to think and act as a true team rather than a mere collection of…

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Let's Do Trust Falls! Or, Let's Not. Ever.
Thoughts

Let's Do Trust Falls! Or, Let's Not. Ever.

Everything you ever wanted to know about working with Second City Works, built from the…

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Robots Are Terrible Improvisers
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Robots Are Terrible Improvisers

Improvisation, conversely, is all about teaching you to find, create and explore what’s not there.

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If You Build It, They Will Come. So We Hope.
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If You Build It, They Will Come. So We Hope.

We believe that corporate America needs to know that work can be better. Our new…

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Improvisation and Our Undeniable Lack of Perspective
Thoughts

Improvisation and Our Undeniable Lack of Perspective

Why do smart, caring people fail to consider other perspectives time after time after time?…

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Casting Talent at The Second City
Thoughts

Casting Talent at The Second City

If you want to attract the best talent, you can’t just be focused on “your”…

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The Gamification of Self-Regulation or Pokemon Go
Thoughts

The Gamification of Self-Regulation or Pokemon Go

Self-regulation is the ability to respond to the ongoing demands of life’s experiences with a…

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The 5 ways of what I learned that will help your success in my experience
Thoughts

The 5 ways of what I learned that will help your success in my experience

We are all working towards the same thing: unrealistic standards and shame around how we…

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Improvisation is People Centered Rapid Prototyping
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Improvisation is People Centered Rapid Prototyping

We need to tap the full creative resources of our teams - and those teams…

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Ethics and Improvisation
Thoughts

Ethics and Improvisation

Think of the environment as a multidimensional ‘Where’ of which the audience is a part.

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Am I a Bad Boss? Seriously, Am I?
Thoughts

Am I a Bad Boss? Seriously, Am I?

It's incredibly easy to judge our boss, company leaders, and everyone else for not living…

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Take the F****ing Note: Performance Feedback
Thoughts

Take the F****ing Note: Performance Feedback

Giving and receiving effective and useful feedback is a rare and wonderful thing. But it…

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Teaching that Sticks
Thoughts

Teaching that Sticks

We share the responsibility to collaborate: teachers and students, bosses and employees, human beings to…

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Training Creativity: The Scientists Say Improvise
Thoughts

Training Creativity: The Scientists Say Improvise

There are many skeptics out there who scoff at the idea of “training” creativity. More…

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Comedy is Authenticity or Astro Teller’s Rollerblades
Thoughts

Comedy is Authenticity or Astro Teller’s Rollerblades

Comedy is a significant art form that allows us to speak truth to power; to…

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America, tronc and Alexander Camelton or Really Fucking Stupid Brand Marketing Ideas
Thoughts

America, tronc and Alexander Camelton or Really Fucking Stupid Brand Marketing Ideas

“In a rapidly changing world, the lessons of experience can easily point us in the…

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Creativity Is Not Magic
Thoughts

Creativity Is Not Magic

All of us have bouts of creativity just as we all experience lulls of inertia.

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What Deadpool can teach us about consumer insights (no, really)
Thoughts

What Deadpool can teach us about consumer insights (no, really)

We should endeavor to know exactly what we’re doing and be willing to call it…

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Corporate Hecklers and Deafening Silence: How I Totally Misread the Audience
Thoughts

Corporate Hecklers and Deafening Silence: How I Totally Misread the Audience

You must listen to understand – instead of listening to respond. You have to be…

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Tales from TEDx: Show Don’t Tell
Thoughts

Tales from TEDx: Show Don’t Tell

Show don’t tell is a vital part of effective storytelling and presenting.

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Jean Paul Sartre and Ringo or How We Learned to Stop Worrying and Trust the Audience
Thoughts

Jean Paul Sartre and Ringo or How We Learned to Stop Worrying and Trust the Audience

So how and why do audiences get things wrong anyway? Do they know? Don’t they…

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Considering a Diversity of Thinking
Thoughts

Considering a Diversity of Thinking

At the end of the day, discomfort is the natural and exhilarating state of a…

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Communication Issues? Meet People Where They Are
Thoughts

Communication Issues? Meet People Where They Are

Could the key to effectively communicate with diverse audiences lay in the muck of our…

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Thoughts

"A Point Of Difference" or "How I'm Failing At Diversity and Inclusion"

A light bulb has been going off for me over the past months (and isn’t…

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My Kids Are The Best Improv Teachers I Know
Thoughts

My Kids Are The Best Improv Teachers I Know

Even with all the preparation in the world, something inevitably goes awry.

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I Was Replaced 3 Months into My New Job
Thoughts

I Was Replaced 3 Months into My New Job

I was focused on my idea, not the right idea. And the right idea results…

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If You've Got It, Flaunt It: Lessons from Joe Maddon
Thoughts

If You've Got It, Flaunt It: Lessons from Joe Maddon

Want to lead a confident team? Lose the rules that don’t make sense, and be…

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How a Clap is Conquering My Most Recent Failure; Addiction
Thoughts

How a Clap is Conquering My Most Recent Failure; Addiction

How often in our work do we actually give someone our undivided attention?…

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Just Listen
Thoughts

Just Listen

It takes work to be a good listener. But the results are so worth it.

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5 Live Epic Event Fiascos
Thoughts

5 Live Epic Event Fiascos

It’s amazing how many people take the producing of a live event for granted; as…

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Getting Unstuck
Thoughts

Getting Unstuck

The vast majority of individuals work to earn. Their jobs don’t inspire or ignite them;…

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The Last Mile? Try Starting in the Middle
Thoughts

The Last Mile? Try Starting in the Middle

In improvisation, “start in the middle” is a suggestion that you begin in action, with…

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Framing Your Hate Mail - Part Two
Thoughts

Framing Your Hate Mail - Part Two

Some of our greatest successes at Second City were born of epic failures.

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Framing Your Hate Mail - Part One
Thoughts

Framing Your Hate Mail - Part One

Great work emerges from very messy places - filled with painful rhymes, incoherent sub-plots and…

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I Work With a Bunch of Failures
Thoughts

I Work With a Bunch of Failures

By developing a culture of authenticity, companies can improve manager-employee relations, respond to change, and…

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Practice Improv, See the Future
Thoughts

Practice Improv, See the Future

Improvisation requires honesty and authenticity. Don’t silence your ideas before they even see the light…

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Oh, to be a
Thoughts

Oh, to be a "woman in leadership"...

We need to actively put women in leadership roles so we can overcome inherent bias…

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The Desperate Need for Authenticity
Thoughts

The Desperate Need for Authenticity

Real authenticity has become so rare that we feel compelled to point it out and…

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Sharing Culture: Sunday Classic Movie Night
Thoughts

Sharing Culture: Sunday Classic Movie Night

People often talk about “work culture” - but I suspect that many don’t really think…

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Why Improvisation?
Thoughts

Why Improvisation?

Why is improvisation important? Because we are a culture increasingly tied to screens, where the…

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The Power of “And.”
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The Power of “And.”

Focusing on “and” rather than “but,” we are making our brains recognize duality. It is…

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The Freedom to Fail
Thoughts

The Freedom to Fail

The failures, the mistakes, the losses - they are all part of cartography for the…

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The Room Where It Happens
Thoughts

The Room Where It Happens

I think most of us want to be in the room where it happens. Which…

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The Buggy Whip. VHS Rentals. The Focus Group.
Thoughts

The Buggy Whip. VHS Rentals. The Focus Group.

Great comedy is all about reflecting truth in new and interesting ways. Great improvisation is…

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Bad Boss: Stephen Colbert Mocks Me on National Television
Thoughts

Bad Boss: Stephen Colbert Mocks Me on National Television

Some bosses don’t want to hear truth, so they create barriers to real conversations; they…

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15 Bad Ideas For Your National Sales Meeting
Thoughts

15 Bad Ideas For Your National Sales Meeting

Here are a few acts that we suggest you leave off your entertainment short list.

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Funny Business Lady
Thoughts

Funny Business Lady

I learned from a very young age that if you could make the old men…

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What David Bowie Teaches Us About Originality
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What David Bowie Teaches Us About Originality

Originality requires failure and an individual’s resilience to not allow that failure to squash future…

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Adam McKay: Leading Like an Improviser
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Adam McKay: Leading Like an Improviser

Leading by following. It’s a concept that is core to improvisation. The idea is that…

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Diversity: All of Us are Better than One of Us
Thoughts

Diversity: All of Us are Better than One of Us

“All of us are better than one of us.” Sales teams will only benefit if…

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