Prepared for the unexpected
We live in a world that is currently undergoing major changes. Many of our previous plans can no longer continue in this form and we are faced with the challenge of acting in the here and now. Improvisation means dealing with the unforeseen ("improvisus" - the unforeseen).
In our applied research project "Organizational Improvisation", we investigate the mindset and skills of experts in the arts, science, and business and provide current activities on this website. The aim is to better understand the ability to improvise in different contexts, including improvisational theater, jazz, creativity and innovation, entrepreneurship, as well as emergency forces.
How do experts "think on their feet", playfully adapt to changing situations and radically collaborate for real-time creativity? These scientific findings will be applied for entrepreneurial purposes to be prepared for the unexpected.
University Course on Business Improvisation
In the course (May 25-29, 2021), international experts from the arts, science, and business conducted highly interactive online sessions to teach the mindset and methods for professional improvisation. The basis of improvisation is found in the arts (theater, music), however, in Business Improvisation it is applied for entrepreneurial purposes to better deal with unexpected situations. For the research project, all lecturers were additionally interviewed to give a deeper insights into their field of expertise.
Business Improvisation 2021
Interviews at the Peter Drucker Forum
Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Screwing up to get better over time. Alex Osterwalder, co-founder of strategyzer and inventor of the Business Model Canvas, shows why constant experimentation is crucial to innovate. Entrepreneurs are constantly improvising and adapting to new and unexpected situations. But it is not about talent, it's about taking risks and gaining experience to create something new.
Vinton Cerf, Vice President & Chief Internet Evangelist at Google and co-inventor of the Internet, demonstrates how to prepare for an unknown future. He shows the design of systems to cope with sudden changes in the environment and highlights tipping points of technological change, from newspapers to the Internet. He concludes that in the future, it is not only learning that is critical, but also understanding how to learn quickly in order to adapt.
Amy Edmondson, Professor at Harvard Business School, explains the essential core elements of psychological safety. Instead of the "command and control" mindset of some managers, she demonstrates the concepts of fearless organizations and how to perform under uncertainty.
Capabilities for organizational change
How do you solve business problems that you could not foresee? Edivandro Conforto, demonstrates, how organizations deal in dynamic environments, using the mindset of improvisation. After doing research at MIT he now works as a Managing Director at Accenture.
(LEGO) Serious Play
Johan S. Roos, Chief Academic Officer of HULT & Co-Inventor of LEGO Serious Play, demonstrates how to make the process of strategy making more innovative. Instead of just dreaming about the future we have to become aware of what is happening right now. For this, we need a different state of mind to improvise, play with new scenarios, and develop real-time strategies.
The Alexander Technique
Michael Gelb, author of various creativity books, demonstrates physical reactions when dealing with fear. People typically take a defensive stance when being afraid. Using juggling as an example, he shows how to relax in stressful situations.