Where do we use actors for role play and interactive skill practice?
We use our diverse creative team of professional actors, facilitators and writers to provide role play scenarios for skill practice, assessments and other drama-based interventions.
They bring realism and skilled characterisation with objective feedback so the participants are free to focus on their own learning.
This is a tool for exploring issues, foreseeing difficulties, problem-solving, improving communication and rehearsing good practice.
Programmes currently using actor-based skill practice include:
- Performance Management.
- Effective communication at work.
- Dignity and diversity at work.
- Management development (leading and developing high performance).
- Personal impact for leaders.
- Interview skills.
We work at all levels, building confidence and developing positive communication including:
- creating rapport and adapting and connecting to others.
- giving and receiving feedback and active listening.
- difficult conversations and assertiveness.
- positive regard and appreciating difference.
How does role play with actors work?
Our acting team creates scenarios illustrating the situation at hand – for instance, the merging of disparate teams or a difficult conversation with a member of staff.
Having seen the scenario played out initially, we then ask audience for advice on how to create better results, and re-enact the scene accordingly. The audience can stop the action at any point to modify the actors’ behaviour and the actors or the facilitator can ask for audience suggestions on how to move forward. Without the audience’s engagement, nothing will change – and seeing a familiar situation as an observer allows people to assess, recognise and resolve conflict or difficulties.
If appropriate, we can then involve the audience more directly in swapping with the actors to try out strategies and responses for themselves.
This experiential approach has very immediate feedback: it works or it doesn’t. It also has the nuance of human response, encouraging flexibility and building sensory acuity towards greater emotional intelligence.
This form of role play is as safe or as challenging as the participants make it, and all suggestions are valid. Their effectiveness or otherwise is immediately apparent.
Design and development.
From your initial brief we work up an outline of potential scenarios, and continue to liaise with you as we develop scripts to ensure that we meet your company’s objectives and your participants’ learning needs. We may take case studies or situations directly from your organisation, or place the action outside the world of your company, to encourage objectivity.
We also provide actors for role-play scenarios where the participants practice their skills without intervention from an ‘audience’, but with a facilitator providing structure and feedback.
Applied Improvisation is the another key tool. It provides a way of examining and expanding our interactive habits. It encourages listening, building, and thinking on our feet. Through games, exercises, and scenarios, it is a way of encouraging individuals or groups to: experiment, listen and respond creatively, adapt, become aware of their personal impact, have fun, remember their creativity, and grow in self-awareness and confidence.
Growth in awareness, of ourselves and others, is the basis of all our programmes – and building on awareness, we encourage commitment to actions based on: ‘what are we / am I going to do differently now?’
These interrelated theatre-based and creative approaches are a flexible resource within programmes, and our team of actors and facilitators make them truthful, relevant, and enjoyable.
These approaches can stand alone, or form part of a larger programme.
See video below for an example of our actors at work.
“Voice were my first choice when we needed to have a range of management development and soft skills courses delivered locally. Their team of actors brought the scenarios to life and provided skilled feedback in order for the participants to reflect and to make new and better choices”
Kerri Maryan-Green : FCO; former Head of Learning and Development, FCO Services