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Entrepreneur Podcast Network Interview with Bob Kulhan

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Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 9.06.28 AMListen to host Eric Dye & guest Bob Kulhan discuss the following:

  • What is the difference between improv comedy and business improv?
  • What is “Yes, And…” and how is it applicable to business?
  • As a fellow entrepreneur, how do you apply improv techniques to Business Improv?
  • How can improvisation help increase your Emotional Intelligence and help you achieve mindfulness?
  • What kind of corporate culture can you create using improv techniques?

Can Playing This Card Game Save Your Hopeless Meetings?

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Want to have better brainstorms and faster meetings? Reshuffle everyone’s status and rank.
by BOB KULHAN for Fast Company

Screen Shot 2017-02-21 at 9.45.30 AMStatus is powerful. Once a team gets working, any initial willingness to communicate can go right out the window if nobody feels comfortable disagreeing with the VP at the end of the table, or the new junior salesperson who might have something to say.

But our positions within a company are actually a combination of rank and status. Your job title and the responsibilities that go with it comprise your rank. But your status is given to you by other people, or taken away by other people (either to your face or behind your back). Most of the time, people with a high rank are granted a great deal of status by coworkers—that’s the nature of a corporate ladder. Read More

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IMPROV NERD Podcast #225: Bob Kulhan

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Bob Kulhan is the author of the new book “Getting to Yes And: The Art of Business Improv.” He is an incredible improviser and teacher who was a core faculty member at The Second City Training Center in Chicago and co-founder of the uber musical group Baby Wants Candy. Jimmy talks to him about how he was influenced by improv teacher Martin DeMaat, the early years of musical improv, and how he fell into teaching improv for business.


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Adapted from “Getting to “Yes, And”: The Art of Business Improv” by Bob Kulhan, (Stanford University Press, (c) 2017 Robert Kulhan).

logo_100_BOne of the keys to success in any business lies in the ability to generate a tremendous amount of ideas, because when it comes down to it, almost every organization is, at heart, in the idea business. This is not a revolutionary concept. However, what often is overlooked—or simply misunderstood—is that the generation of great ideas is a numbers game. Businesses ostensibly are always looking for killer ideas that will boost profits and cut costs; ideas that streamline processes and maximize investments; and ideas that will have significant impact in the marketplace. To get to those killers, though, a business may have to cough up a mess of ideas that are ridiculous, budget busting, unusable, or simply awful.

A business that runs on the assumption that it will come up with a great idea exactly when it needs one is severely limiting, if not deluding, itself. That business is most likely achieving “greatness” by simply lowering the standard of what counts as great. The fact is, to get to unimpeachably great ideas—sharp, innovative, outright brilliant ones—you have to come up with an ugly pile of horrible ones, too (Osborn, Alex, “Applied Imagination: Principles and Procedures of Creative Problem Solving,” 3rd ed., Creative Education Foundation Press, 1963). By way of analogy, think about the old process of gold panning. As you might remember from elementary school studies of the California Gold Rush, panning is the art of extracting gold from a river by scooping up sediment with a large pan. Panning is a sloppy, difficult process, and it can get results.

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Bob Kulhan: Is Improvisation the most important business skill?

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Screen Shot 2017-02-07 at 12.30.43 PMJoined in studio today by Bob Kulhan, founder and CEO of Business Improv, and author of Getting to Yes And: The Art of Business Improv.Learn more about Bob Kulhan’s book here.

Discussion guide from today’s conversation with Bob Kulhan:
1. What is improv?
2. And how does improv integrate into our daily business practice?
4. What is “YES AND” and how does it work?
5. What are the cognitive and social psychology behind this?
6. How does “YES AND” and improv help with creativity and innovation?
7. Improv is a skill. How do we learn and develop stronger improvisational skills?

10 Keys To A Business Culture That Can Adapt Quickly

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by Marty Zwilling, Veteran Start-up Mentor; Executive (for Huffington Post)

Screen Shot 2017-02-03 at 10.27.46 AMAs an entrepreneur, you have to improvise and adapt quickly to survive and thrive in the face of the unpredictable challenges of the market. But this improvisation a not a comedy, although there are some distinct correlations, in relation to reacting, adapting, and communicating. In business and in comedy, you win most often with “Yes, and …” instead of “Yes, but ….”

I definitely learned a few things about how to improvise effectively in business from a new book, “Getting to ‘Yes And’: The Art of Business Improv,” by Bob Kulhan, who is a master of the art in both comedy and business. Kulhan is a professor at the Duke University School of Business, but was trained in improvisation by some comedy greats, including Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

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How to increase employee engagement and productivity. w/Bob Kulhan.

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Screen Shot 2017-02-01 at 11.00.54 AMBob Kulhan, veteran improv performer, university professor, CEO, and consultant, shares insights from his book: Getting To Yes And: The Art of Business Improv. Bob shows how improv techniques such as the “Yes, and” approach, divergent and convergent thinking, and focusing on being present can translate into more productive meetings, swifter decisions, stronger collaboration, positive conflict resolution, mindfulness, and more.

Recommended Reading: Top 17 Creative Leadership Book Picks For 2017

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By David Slocum (for Forbes)

Screen Shot 2017-01-31 at 10.11.26 AM2017 is opening with a stack of new and helpful books on technology, transformation, and the human and business challenges faced by creative leaders. Here is a list of 17 recommended titles.

Getting to ‘Yes And’: The Art of Business Improv

Bob Kulhan with Chuck Crisafulli, Stanford Business Books , January 11

An actor, former teacher at Chicago’s famed Second City troupe, and now an adjunct professor at Duke and Columbia business schools shares insights from comedic improvisation for better business performance. Kulhan’s lively guide to developing listening, focus, energy, engagement, adaptation, and decision-making skills provides leaders fresh ways to drive positive change in today’s fast-paced workplace. Read More