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COM 66 — Think on Your Feet: An Improviser’s Guide to Business and Communication

Quarter: Summer
Instructor(s): Debra Schifrin, Daniel Schifrin
Duration: 2 days
Format/Location: On-campus
Date(s): Jul 27—Jul 28
Class Recording Available: No
Class Meeting Day: Saturday and Sunday
 
Class Meeting Time: 10:00 am—4:00 pm (PT)
Tuition: $440
   
Refund Deadline: Jul 20
 
Unit(s): 1
   
Enrollment Limit: 26
  
Status: Open
 
Quarter: Summer
Day: Saturday and Sunday
Duration: 2 days
Time: 10:00 am—4:00 pm (PT)
Date(s): Jul 27—Jul 28
Unit(s): 1
Format/Location: On-campus
 
Tuition: $440
 
Refund Deadline: Jul 20
 
Instructor(s): Debra Schifrin, Daniel Schifrin
 
Enrollment Limit: 26
 
Recording Available: No
 
Status: Open
 
The skill of thinking on your feet is no longer optional in the workplace; it is mandatory. In this interactive, improvisation-based communication course, you will learn and practice skills for handling the unexpected with calm, grace, inclusiveness, and humor. You will increase your agility, grow your confidence in unpredictable situations, and learn critical new skills and mindsets. These include being more present and open to surprising ideas; cultivating a mindset of curiosity; and engaging with your audience with energy, commitment, and delight. Whether you are in front of an audience of one or 800, you will learn how to prevent missteps and imperfections from derailing you. The course will reveal the ways spontaneity and thinking on your feet can be joyful and how play and humor can be game changers in creating an authentic and positive connection with your audience. The course will include a blend of interactive activities in pairs and small groups, targeted debriefs, group discussions, and mini-lectures. By taking time to practice these techniques in a supportive and encouraging environment, you will come out of this course a stronger and more intuitive communicator.

This course is not a theater-performance course; no theater or improv experience is necessary.

DEBRA SCHIFRIN
Lecturer, Stanford Graduate School of Business; Founder, Debra Schifrin Consulting

Debra Schifrin is a corporate consultant and lecturer in management at Stanford Graduate School of Business. She co-created the school’s first and only improv-based MBA management course, "Spontaneous Management." As a consultant, she designs and leads innovative, improv-based training sessions for businesses on leadership, communications, collaboration, and storytelling. Her clients come from multiple sectors, including high tech, consulting, medicine, educational technology, consumer goods, and finance. Clients include Bain & Company, Box, DoorDash, Yelp, and Kaiser Permanente. She is an experienced improv teacher and performer. Before coming to Stanford, she spent a decade as a reporter, director, and producer for National Public Radio and Marketplace, where she reported her stories and commentaries on-air for millions of listeners nationwide.

DANIEL SCHIFRIN
Founder, StoryForward

Dan Schifrin, founder of StoryForward, consults with organizations and companies around the world in the areas of creativity, narrative design, and storytelling. Apart from his courses for Stanford Continuing Studies, he has taught in the Department of Architecture at UC Berkeley and the creative writing program at SF State. He is also the co-curator of the exhibition “Beyond Belief” for SFMOMA and the Contemporary Jewish Museum.

Textbooks for this course:

There are no required textbooks; however, some fee-based online readings may be assigned.