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words with friends with benefits

August 10, 2015

Comedians are funny people.

They don’t look at the world the way most other people do. They see things that most other people cannot.

They imagine what would happen if …?

What would the bartender say if … two red blood cells walked into the bar? “Sorry, we don’t serve your type here.“?

Same Time Next YearOr what would an app look like if… people were interested in intellectual engagement as well as physical intimacy?  “Words with Friends with Benefits“?

Innovation is a funny business.

It requires us to look at the world in a way that most people do not. To see things that others can not.

It requires us to imagine what would happen if …?

What would a personal computer look like if it used proportional fonts? The Macintosh.

Innovation is often the result of the combination of two previously separate elements. Someone has imagined a different way that might just be a better way of doing things. Like comedians, innovators are often laughed at because they see the world in ways the rest of us cannot. Yet.

The practice of comedy requires you to be agile, to think on your feet and to be open to possibilities. In improvisational theatre one of the cardinal rules is that you cannot decline an  offer from a fellow actor – whatever they say or do you must accept it and build on it. Being that way in the world opens the door to some wonderful possibilities.

The path to Partner in some of the larger Management Consulting  firms includes stand-up comedy and improvisational theatre training. If you are cynical you might say those courses are there to make sure the Partner always has something to say when they are with a client and, if all else fails, can make them laugh and leave them feeling good about the interaction.

Useful skills, but I suspect what they are trying to cultivate is a different way of looking at the world. Opening the mind to new possibilities, to new opportunities to innovate, to things that their competitors cannot see. Yet.

When was the last time you asked what if …?

If you can’t remember, you can be sure that your most successful competitors are asking themselves that question every single day. Or maybe they aren’t. But, what if …?


If you would like me to come and share with you and your team the benefits that come from my work in the theatre and the experiential learning environments that I create, make me an offer via the Contact Me page.

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