BP asked us to organise and host an event for the BP Women’s Network, which believes there should be more women in leadership positions, and that diversity and inclusion should be a way of life for businesses.
The key objective for BP was to equip conference delegates with the skills needed to convey confidence, particularly in the context of standing up and sharing ideas in front of an audience.
As much of the conference programme was speaker-led, BP were looking for a series of short, punchy sessions that added a unique, practical element to the day.
The sessions had to be structured in a way that engaged delegates and provided tangible communication techniques that could be applied immediately.Having had some experience of the world of the performing arts, one of the BP team members felt that actor-led sessions could have the dynamism required to fulfil the brief.
City Academy proposed a series of communications skills workshops rooted in performance training, covering methods of conveying presence and creating impact. We designed three short practical sessions to explore the importance of ‘gravitas’, sending out three core communications specialists directly to the BP offices in Sunbury on Thames.
Delivered on site and in house, each workshop targeted around 30 people, mixing both technical (engineers, geologists, IT) and non-technical (HR, marketing) staff members to make for more stimulating learning environments.
Provided with the very same body language and vocal training methods taught to professional actors, everybody was given techniques for being confident and feeling heard, communicating authority and demanding respect, as well as understanding status and negotiating power-play. They were encouraged to explore their own personal styles, and find ways of holding attention and making an authentic connection with their audience.
Nurtured with the likes of icebreaker activities and body language exercises, individuals let go of their inhibitions as they navigated everyday interactions through role play, coming out of the other side of their workshop prepared for the competition.
What They Thought
We enjoyed an absolutely wonderful session this morning with Kate, Dolly and Lotte! They managed a crowd of 90 people with real energy and professionalism, and everyone walked out of there with a smile on their face and a spring in their step. A big thank you to those three incredible ladies.
– Kathleen De Melliac, BP Organiser
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