The Power of “Yes, And”

Or: How to be creative like a comedian

By The Editors
March 4, 2015 9:00 am

Gentlemen, hate to break it to you, but you could be a “No, but” person.

Y’know: those people who argue everything in meetings. The people who always say, “Allow me to play Devil’s Advocate.”

Which, I mean, Ugh, right?

What you want to be is a “Yes, and.”

Start here: Yes, And: How Improvisation Reverses “No, But” Thinking and Improves Creativity and Collaboration, just released.

This is the new guidebook from The Second City that inspires originality through the craft of improvisation.

Yes, And is practical. Easy to read. For work and play.

And it’s from the Chicago institution that bestowed upon the world Nick the Lounge Singer and countless comedic greats.

Inside: nuggets of improv wisdom you’d do well to implement in your daily life immediately, told through lessons from SC workshops and behind-the-scenes anecdotes.

Like these:

Yes, And: Number one rule of improv. Always agree, then build on it. Give every idea the chance to be acted on. Foster possibilities.

Follow the Follower: Key for any great comedy troupe. Allow any member to assume leadership according to their expertise. Shuffle when needed.

Embrace Failure: The biggest threat to creativity is fear. Create a safe place to fail. Acknowledge mistakes and incorporate them into the run of play (i.e., that’s when you break).

And many more.

Now go forth, and make stories of your own.

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