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index examples

acronyms and abbreviations for learning and fun

bloom's taxonomy of learning domains

body language - theory, signals, meanings

brainstorming - process and tips

business process modelling

career change planner tool and template

cliches, expressions and words origins

david grove's clean language methodology

diagrams and other free tools

emotional intelligence (EQ)

experiential learning - and guide to facilitating experiential activities

'fantasticat' concept - for teaching and motivating young people

the four temperaments (four humours)

funny free posters

games, tricks, puzzles and warm ups for groups

games and exercises for team building

more games and exercises for team building

group selection recruitment method

hans eysenck's personality types theory

hrd performance evaluation


interviews - group selection method

interview presentations - how to prepare and deliver

job interviews - tips, techniques, questions, answers

johari window model and free diagrams

jung's psychological types

keirsey's personality types theory (temperament sorter model)

kirkpatrick's learning evaluation model

leadership tips

love and spirituality at work

mcclelland's achievement-motivation theory

management and business quiz - 50 test questions for fun (mostly)

motivational posters

william moulton marston's DISC personality theory (Inscape, Thomas Int., etc)

myers briggs personality theory and mbti types indicator

personality theories, models and types

pest market analysis - free template

posters - free, funny, motivational, inspirational

presentations at job interviews

puzzles and games for team building and warm-ups

puzzles answers

puzzles and conundrums - complex

quizballs - free questions and answers for quizzes

recruitment process and principles - attracting high quality staff

role playing and role play games process and tips

sales activator® sales training and development games system

self-employment planner template - finding what you can succeed at

self-help and self-esteem

stress and stress management

swot analysis - free template and examples

team building games and activities - free ideas, exercises

video clips for teaching and training

workshops - format and how to run

See main subjects index for more materials, ideas and resources.

role playing games and activities rules and tips

free role playing games ideas and theory for employee training, motivation, team building and development

Here are techniques, theory and ideas for designing and using your own role playing games, exercises and activities, and for using the free role playing games, exercises and activities available in this site (below and here). Role playing games, exercises and activities help build teams, develop employee motivation, improve communications and are fun - for corporate organizations, groups of all sorts, and even children's development. Role playing games, exercises and activities improve training, learning development, and liven up conferences and workshops. This free article about role playing ideas and rules has been provided by Edward Harbour and Jill Connick of AIM Associates (Drama) Limited, a London-based specialist consultancy using drama in learning and development. will help you design and use games and exercises for training sessions, meetings, workshops, seminars or conferences, for adults, young people and children, in work, education or for clubs and social activities. Role playing games, exercises and activities can also enhance business projects, giving specific business outputs and organizational benefits. We cannot accept responsibility for any liability which arises from the use of any of these free role playing ideas or games - please see the disclaimer notice below. Always ensure that you exercise caution and sensitivity when using any role playing games or activities which might disturb or upset people, and take extra care when working with younger people and children.


effective use of role playing in learning and development

Role playing has been around as a learning tool for a long time. Without defining it as such, many of us use role play as a basic tool of life. Whenever we project into the future in a kind of 'what if' scenario we are indulging in a role play of some sort, we are projecting ourselves into an imaginary situation where, though we cannot control the outcome, we can anticipate some or all of the conditions and 'rehearse' our performance in order to influence the outcome. Much of the time we are better for it. By way of example, you might wish to speak to your garage to raise the fact that they have still not cured the oil leak. Before doing so you might well rehearse to yourself what you intend to say. This would be a mini role play - we do it all the time because it helps.

In a learning environment role play can be a very flexible and effective tool. The tenet 'I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand' is very applicable here. Role play is often used as a way of making sense of the theory, of gathering together concepts into a practical experience. And yet, it often goes wrong. Why? Because like so many things which are simple on concept, it can become awfully complicated. If used badly in a training environment the role play tool can be ineffective and sometimes even damaging. One of the main complicating factors surrounding role play is the attitude or emotional state of the people taking part. Quite frankly, many people are nervous, even terrified, at the prospect of participating in a role play; not surprising when you hear about some people's unfortunate role play experiences.

For the purpose of this article, role play is defined as an experience around a specific situation which contains two or more different viewpoints or perspectives. The situation is usually written as a prepared brief and the different perspectives on the same situation are handed out to the different people who will come together to discuss the situation. Each person will have a particular objective, or objectives they want to fulfil which may well be in conflict with their fellow role player or role players. It is how each role player handles the situation that forms the basis of skills practice, assessment and development. The situations will be realistic and relevant to the role players and the most successful ones will be focused on developing a particular skill or skill set. If you consider a musical analogy, each 'player' is involved in the same 'symphony' but has a different score - their perspective and objective(s) - for their own 'instrument' - themselves as individuals - their histories.

So, how can we take the fear out of the role play experience?

Here are some guidelines that you might like to think about when planning your next session.


role play objectives

role playing placement - where in the agenda?

role play briefing

role play observation and feedback

Role play rules are basically simple: role plays must be focused; the objectives must be clear and understood; instructions must be clear and understood; feedback needs to be specific, relevant, achievable and given immediately. Crucial to learning and developing options of behaviour - knowing what works, what doesn't work, the range of behaviour available to an individual - is the opportunity to go back and have another go or several goes at bits of the role play and/or the whole role play. This flexibility needs judging and managing on each occasion, so as to provide a more comfortable experience, and to double the learning value. Aside from which, when you plan and run proper role play sessions, participants will often tell you they actually enjoyed the experience; that they forgot it was a role play, and found it the most powerful learning they've ever experienced!

This free article is aimed to help non-professional role play trainers and facilitators (ie., those without an acting background) to create and provide effective role playing for training and development, and includes the same principles that professional role play facilitators use in designing, writing, and delivering specialised role playing training activities.

This article is provided by Edward Harbour and Jill Connick of AIM Associates (Drama) Limited, a London-based specialist consultancy using drama in learning and development, and its contribution is gratefully acknowledged. Please give similar acknowledgement when you use or pass on their methods.

The design, facilitation and training of role playing are at the core of AIM's expertise. If you'd like more information or advice about role playing please contact them: phone +44 (0)20 8829 8978, website: www.aimass.com or email: info@aimass.com.

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The use of this material is free provided copyright (see below) is acknowledged and reference or link is made to the www.businessballs.com website. This material may not be sold, or published in any form. Disclaimer: Reliance on information, material, advice, or other linked or recommended resources, received from Alan Chapman, shall be at your sole risk, and Alan Chapman assumes no responsibility for any errors, omissions, or damages arising. Users of this website are encouraged to confirm information received with other sources, and to seek local qualified advice if embarking on any actions that could carry personal or organisational liabilities. Managing people and relationships are sensitive activities; the free material and advice available via this website do not provide all necessary safeguards and checks. Please retain this notice on all copies.

© content edward harbour and jill connick 2004-8; edit and contextual material alan chapman 2004-2013