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  • Writer's pictureKate Crawshaw

How not to die a role-play death...

Why do we need actors? Jane in accounts is very animated……

In business, experiential learning - or role-play, is often tackled by getting in ‘Jane’.

Why pay actors to work with your staff? Jane is so affable, confident and charismatic… besides... She was involved in acting at University - so will know her stuff.

Actors don’t seem to do anything difficult.... - So why waste our training budget?

This is the core issue of most horrendous role-play experiences. (And many of us still hold “get in to pairs” role-play trauma). It is the reason some staff members shudder at the thought. It is the reason companies miss one of the most powerful learning approaches.

So we present: The Top 5 reasons why Jane should stay in accounts

1. Jane likes you.

Jane works with you. And has to continue working with you. She wants you to be great. So she makes it easy on you both. The problem? You are in a learning environment - and to learn - we need a challenge. Professional actors provide a safe, but challenging learning environment. It is positive and secure. We deliver a problem so you can practice the solution.

2. Jane is Jane.

She is working within her own experience. She cannot challenge you beyond what she knows. This is the job of a corporate actor. We assess your communication strengths and manipulate the scenario. This ensures each experience is beneficial and unique. We put the heat on when necessary and step back when required. The end result is to leave with greater awareness and confidence.

3. Jane is ‘acting’.

Actors don’t look like they are acting. They appear effortless because of their training and experience. We design a real-life scenario - and transport the participant through these skills. Experiential experiences require the participant to be themselves. This is the most powerful learning approach. To practice real life, as your would in real life. Jane is your colleague and the moment she steps outside of being herself, 'reality' is lost.

4. Jane is focusing on what she is doing - not what the learning is.

One moment of mind wandering, and the experience is over. The main focus must be on the participant and not on what to say next. Corporate role-play actors assess the scenario as it progresses. They ensure all the key learning outcomes are met and know when to end the scenario. They are trained to provide feedback that is constructive and useful.

5. Jane will be busy doing the accounting.

If we had a dollar for every person who said ‘Wow. I had no idea experiential learning could be THIS beneficial! The actors are so believable!’

Jane won’t have time to role-play - because she’ll be counting all those dollars. (And we won't be doing that because we are not accountants.)

So next time your staff need real-life learning - call in the experts. We’ll do what we’re good at. And then Jane can too.

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