Our June event, Improv for Entrepreneurs, was an energizing close to the Swerve year. Jen Brown, founder of The Engaging Educator, got everyone on their feet and engaged with improv activities related to their work as creative entrepreneurs. Brown encouraged attendees to listen and interact in a large group and then in smaller, one-on-one partner pairings. First was a fast-paced game of Zip, Zap, Zop. Brown joked that the activity was the equivalent rush of a morning cup of coffee.
All participants were invited to bring a pitch based on their business. In groups of two, everyone shared their stories. Jen modeled how to improve listening skills by asking the partner not pitching to request the presenter to “Zoom in” or “Zoom out” of the conversation which forced the presenter to be flexible with the focus of their message. This experience emphasized the importance of knowing your pitch cold and being flexible based on your audience.
In another interaction, individuals acted out an activity directed by a partner. Once performing the task, the partner asks what they are doing. The person responds by stating a task other than the one they were miming or executing. It was a fun experiment in multitasking and focus on keepingyour mind in the present!
Brown explained how improv can help in numerous ways in professional settings. Her organization, The Engaging Educator, offers classes that teach the “how to say it” aspect of speaking in both professional and social settings. Like the exercises at the June MeetUp, the classes focus on active listening, public speaking, storytelling, creativity, flexibility within conversations, and teamwork. Jen inspired everyone to actively engage and stay present.
Join us for the new year of Swerve Meetups beginning in August. Do you use social media for your business? The next meetup, Sharing Your Brand Online, will take place August 18th with LinkedIn Coach, Teddy Burriss, who will focus on using social media to influence your brand. Register here.