There is no script for life and there is no exact script that will help you be more creative. In this episode, Amy interviews Chris Esparza about the power of Improv and how to work without a script. The skills and principles of Improv, borrowed from the world of theater, can help you deal with the ambiguity of leading creative teams.
What You’ll Learn
- What Improv is and how it can help your teams be more creative
- The three principles of Improv and how to use them with your team
- The importance of preparation versus planning
- How Chris was able to take five weeks off from his full-time job to dive deep into Improv in Chicago
About Chris Esparza
Chris is a listener-in-progress, leadership learner-educator, applied improvisor, and accidental runner. He currently serves as the Associate Director at the University of Oregon’s Holden Center for Leadership & Community Engagement. He shares both administrative and programmatic responsibilities across the center, including coordination of the LeaderShape Institute, Catalyst, and our Strengths-Based Leadership programming. Recently, he has been active in infusing principals of improvisation into the center’s curricular objectives, facilitating workshops and trainings across campus on adaptability, ambiguity, change, creativity, group development, and power and status.
Chris grounds his work in experience with leadership development, group facilitation, diversity and inclusion, and applied psychology. Chris attended Stanford University for his bachelor’s degree (Psychology) and UC Santa Barbara for his master’s and doctoral work (Counseling Psychology). Outside of work you might find Chris running on the riverside paths in Eugene, OR, eating lots of Mexican food, or participating in the world’s largest treasure hunt (geocaching).
- IO Improv Theatre
- Book: Improv Wisdom by Patricia Ryan Madsen
- Book: Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
- Book: Everything’s An Offer by Robert Poynton
- Book: Training to Imagine by Kat Koppett
- Applied Improvisation Network
- International Leadership Association
- University of Oregon Holden Center
- Chris Esparza on Twitter, Tumblr, and LinkedIn