Learning Lessons In Leadership From Theater

It is the job of an actor to bring characters to life. This is similar to the role that senior leaders in the corporate role play when leading a team of professionals. Emotional intelligence has long taken a backset to critical thinking the minds of most professionals, but this has changed significantly since the dawn of the digital age. In fact, business greats like Stephen Covey, Ray Dalio and Dale Carnegie have stated that is important to focus on mastering emotional intelligence when it comes to healthy professional relationships.

It’s quite possible that business people can learn a lot from those who make their living in the theater. After all, actors have to practice things like showing empathy and character development in order to be successful, and these traits are important in a corporate setting as well. Here are a few tips to keep in mind. This practice allows actors to be emotionally honest as well, and this can be a useful tool in the workplace.

Be An Emotionally Intelligent Leader

Actors have to understand the emotions of their character in order to relate to these feelings and truly internalize them. To truly understand and break down a character, an actor asks specific questions in order to “humanize” the character and make the character relatable to an audience. Professionals leaders go through a similar process by taking their own goals in to consideration and acknowledging the long and short-term obstacles that come with reaching these goals. Leaders also have to consider what motivates them and those around them, much like actors.


Finally, it’s important to keep in mind that improvisation is one of the skills that shows the true talent of an actor. Leaders in the workplace should also learn this skill, and remember that it’s impossible to control everything all the time. Improve helps actors to truly get lost in their characters and deliver great performances. Leaders who improvise are able to think outside of the box, which may be necessary in a number of professional scenarios.