Lesson 5: working with the unexpected Copy

Session 5 Overview 

Working with the unexpected can be challenging, but at the same time can also harbour opportunities. This module explores how we can prepare for the unexpected to happen and what we can do in response. We also discuss why flexibility and working with the unexpected is an important skill when navigating processes in the disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation field. This module also provides a closure to the course.

Learning Objectives 

In this session you will: 

  • explore the importance of working with the unknown and with a diverse group of stakeholders in a co-creation process 
  • learn tips and techniques to work with the unexpected, and ultimately become a more relaxed facilitator. 

Short Description

This video gives you some tips and tricks on how to prepare for the unexpected when planning and facilitating meetings and workshops.  

Key resources:

1.Harnessing humour for humanitarian work

In this TEDxvideo, the Climate Centre’s director for research and innovation explores how we can harness the power of humour to advance our humanitarian work.

2.Learning from failures in communication: sharing lessons

In dealing with the unexpected, adaptation is a critical skill. So too is taking the opportunity to reflect on what went wrong and how to learn from it. This article from We Adapt provides a helpful overview of a workshop that didn’t go as planned and what lessons were learned. 

3.Embracing uncertainty

This short blog highlights how improvisation teaches you to feel more comfortable when dealing with uncertainty, so that you can harvest those greater rewards.

Additional resources:

1. Applied Improvisation Training For Disaster Readiness and Response: Preparing Humanitarian Workers and Communities for the Unexpected

The purpose of this paper is to introduce applied improvisation as a tool for training humanitarian aid workers. It is an excellent modality for training aid workers to deal with crisis and disaster scenarios where decision-making and collaboration under pressure are critical.

2.Applied Improvisation: Leading, Collaborating & Creating Beyond the Theatre (Paid resource)

This collection of Applied Improvisation stories and strategies draws back the curtain on an exciting, innovative, growing field of practice and research that is changing the way people lead, create, and collaborate. The contributors in this anthology are professional Applied Improvisation facilitators united in the belief that improvisation can positively transform just about all human activity.

Lesson Content