In 2010, scientist-turned-filmmaker Randy Olson asked me to create an improv workshop for several former marine biology colleagues to bolster their communication skills. I really didn't know what I was getting into, but "Yes, And-ed" myself into what's become a very rewarding part of my career and Life.
I love working with the science community! And for 10 years I've specialized in facilitating improv training to those across many different disciplines. You have unique
challenges around communicating important, often complex information to widely varied audiences. And your ability as a communicator often has high stakes consequences.
If you want action taken by policy makers, the ability to inform local stakeholders and/or to get funded! - you need your soft skills to be effective.
So I co-authored this book to share insights and techniques that I feel could be helpful to anyone who'd like some support with their comms skills. It's no replacement for experiential learning though. That's why the improv exercises are so important. They physically and mentally engage you in the learning process. It helps with interpersonal communication, collaboration, generating creativity, upgrading your emotional intelligence. It attacks that comfort zone thing you always talk about and it is genuinely, Fun to do. What are you waiting for?! Get some improv training!
The power and importance of storytelling is now widely accepted, but this book goes further to focus on story-making.
CONNECTION brings together a former scientist, a story consultant, and an improv actor to give you the critical thinking of science combined with a century of Hollywood knowledge in the creation and shaping of stories.
The material is relevant to lawyers, politicians, public health workers, educators, activists-- everyone. CONNECTION provides the narrative tools for effective communication.