Monday, 27 February 2017

What would you do?

Imagine this:

You just got on a plane. It is going to be a long flight so you make yourself comfortable and take off your shoes. The seat-belt sign lights up and you lock your seat belt nice and tight as you watch the safety video on the screen in front of you. 

Just as you trying to decide if you'll have the beef or chicken for dinner, the plane starts moving and drives slowly to the runway. You hear the engines roaring as the plane seems to be ready to leave. However, the captain has one quick message:

"Uhm. Good afternoon ladies and gentleman, this is your captain speaking. Welcome on board of flight 724 to Amsterdam. I wish to inform you all that this will be my very first time flying an airplane and yes... I am a bit nervous. But not to worry. I have read two books on the art of flying and I have successfully completed a questionnaire on the matter, so I'm pretty sure we are going to be fine. (awkward silence) ... Ok. Well... I would like to wish you all a good flight."

How would you feel?

If people ask me why they should use a corporate actor in their training workshops, I like to tell them the story above. Because what this pilot needs, is also what participants often require:  

The flight simulator.

What does 'being a flight simulator' mean?

Sadly, in most instructor-led training sessions, too much time is spent on lecture and sharing information rather than practice and hands-on exploration of the material. Corporate actors close this gap by letting participants practice new behaviors in a safe to fail environment, meaning they won't have to "fly that plane" straight away. 

How does this work?

At InterACT we let people engage in face to face simulations of real workplace interactions. And every time we do this, people are blown away by the reality of the experience. It allows participants to put theory into practice and they can safely practice new behaviors. With our powerful and personalized feedback people learn to appreciate the impact of their actions, without risking relationships or reputation. 

Dave Meier, founder of the Center of Accelerated Learning once said: “Learning is creation, not consumption. Only what the learner creates is ever really learned.” And I couldn't agree more. That is why at InterACT we design all role play scenario's together with our participants. Whether it is a one on one role play session as part of a personal coaching or if it is a group case scenario during a leadership development program: We create customized, true learning experiences.  

So do you send your staff out to fly airplanes without any proper practice?Or do you feel like you are about to fly a plane without having been on the flight simulator?

Contact me here for a complementary information session. 

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

5 reasons to hire a corporate actor for your role play interview.

"I really don't get the feeling that you understand why it can't be done" I insist, "you are not listening to what I am saying!" 

The candidate who is sitting in front of me becomes irritated. "I will listen to what you're saying," she sighs, "but the reason does not matter at all. It just needs to happen!"

Today I am working as a corporate actor for a recruitment organisation. I am invited to test several candidates for a new job role within a bank. The perfect candidate needs to be able to cope well with resistance, and can convince others with strong and emphatic leadership. 

While many recruiters like to test skills in a competency based interview in their quest for the perfect candidate, nowadays candidates have to demonstrate them as well. That is why recruiters turn to the role play interview to help choose between candidates. It helps them to see whether someone can react appropriately in a ‘real life’ situation and not just on paper or with words. 

In the last years I've learned that many recruiters and HR professionals can't wait to play that angry client or dominant colleague in a simulation. But at InterACT WA, our clients decided to turn to professional corporate actors instead to 'act the part'. All to get the best results out of their role play session.

Maybe you wish to consider doing the same.

Here are our clients five main reasons to work with a corporate actor: 

1. A corporate actor plays realistically

An actor is able to portray different kinds of behavior simply because it's their job and they studied for it. For recruiters of HR professionals this is much more difficult. They are not used to acting and often seem to 'overact'. This will make the role play interview less realistic and therefor less effective. 

2. A corporate actor plays interactive

This means that the actor's behavior can be influenced. A professional corporate actor always responds to the behavior of the candidate. If the candidate demonstrates different competencies, it will also effect and change the actor's behavior. This allows the candidate to experience directly the effect of its own behavior and for the assessor to easily score performance. Recruiters are often not trained in this and will usually stick to a more rigidly role play. 

3. A corporate actor is not a colleague

Candidates often say that they felt a role play session with a recruiter or HR professional would not been as educationally valuable. Hiring a professional actor for the most important part of your recruitment process will allow you to test competencies without risking relationships or reputation. 

4. A corporate actor is able to give feedback after the role-play

An actor is trained to observe also during the role play acting. He looks while playing the role, from a helicopter perspective. As a result, the actor is able to provide valuable feedback afterwards. He can state clearly why he reacted in certain situations in a certain way. In contrast, recruiters of HR Professionals often get absorbed in their act they lose the helicopter view.

5. A corporate actor is familiar with the objectives

This means that the actor knows exactly what the objective of the assessment is. This allows him to reward preferred behaviors deliberately during the role play. He can also connect the feedback to the objectives of the assessment creating valuable insights for both organization and candidates. 

And finally, a good actor is not necessarily a good CORPORATE actor. At InterACT WA, our actors are trained to do role play interviews and they can truly help you improve your recruitment process results. 

Would you like to know how? Contact me here for a chat.