Saturday, 24 August 2019

The Secret of Great Roleplayers


Recently I recruited for a new corporate actor for our growing team. 

During one of my interviews, I asked the actor sitting in front of me what he thought to be the most challenging part of corporate acting. His answer: 

“Challenging? If you know your lines you should be ok, right?”

Wrong.  

The art of corporate acting is a lot more than just learning the lines of a role-play scenario. 

Corporate actors are expert improvisers and can create believable characters and in-the-moment performances. You know that feeling when you watch actors on stage or film, and you are transported to places that seem real and believable. Well, the same applies when actors take on corporate roleplay. The person they are interacting with quickly forgets they are with an actor, as the situation comes to life.

At InterACT we only work with first-class role-play actors.Our actors are trained to create those ‘real’ situations in imaginary circumstances so that participants can practice interactions as if they are real. A Corporate Actor can articulate meaningful, honest feedback based on what their character felt and experienced to assist the participant to better understand their own experience.

Now if you have worked with a first-class role-play actor then these qualities should be obvious. But if you’ve experienced mediocrity then perhaps your role-play actor didn’t possess the magic ingredient that, at our InterACT team, comes as standard…namely, an excellent attitude.

Because an excellent attitude from our role-play actors is as important as their talent and skill. An ‘excellent attitude’ can be open to interpretation of course, so let us break down what it means to us and what it can mean for you if you have hired a role-play actor for your training, presentation or assessment:

1. The role-play actor is happy to be there.
The actor’s attitude should be that your project is as important as any other job they have worked on. Corporate acting work is not a ‘fill in’ job, or temping work – something to do if there’s no better acting offer on the table. We specifically recruit role-play actors who have a keen interest in using their skills to help learners achieve their goals.

2. The role-play actor is hard working.
Attitude also shines through in the preparation for a project as well as the delivery. If the actor is not sufficiently prepared then the exercise will not work. We have heard stories of other role-play actors not knowing the learning objectives, or delivering a role-play with their brief ‘on their lap’ – this is not acceptable or professional in our book. Thorough preparation should be a given.

3. The role-play actor is not on a power trip.
The actor is there to deliver their role in the most realistic way and work in a collaborative partnership with the trainer, presenter or assessor. Through a careful briefing the actor must be disciplined enough to listen extremely carefully, concentrate and react to the participant’s behavior. The role-play actor may have to portray a certain characteristic in order to challenge, but a role-play exercise should NEVER be a celebration of how well the actor can act.

At InterACT we go to great lengths to work with actors who represent our values. Trusting the quality, commitment and attitude of your role-play actors is essential in delivering the most effective training, presentation or assessment.

Want to talk more? Give us a call on 0487 693 349.

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