Pig catching on 1 March: How to connect across gender, race and generation gaps

Flying pig

You are invited to catch flying pigs with us

In-person pig catching in Johannesburg

Topic: How to connect across gender, race and generation gaps
Date: Friday 1 March
Time:  7:30 am – 10:00 am
Place:  Floor 21, University Corner, above Wits Art Museum, Corner of Jan Smuts and Jorissen, Braamfontein (parking can be booked 8 days in advance)
Facilitators: Tshego Khutsoane, Petro Janse van Vuuren, Les Nkosi, Palesa Xulu
Cost: R280
Dress: Comfortable clothes you can stretch and move in
RSVP: by Wed 27 Feb to petro.jansevanvuuren@wits.ac.za (unless you want parking, then let me know as soon as possible)

Live online pig catching in a Zoom room

Topic: How to connect across gender, race and generation gaps
Date: Friday 1 March
Time:  2:30 pm – 4:00 pm
Place:  In Zoom room with ID: 2828282259
Facilitators: Petro Janse van Vuuren
Dress: Comfortable clothes you can stretch and move in
RSVP: by Wed 27 Feb to petro.jansevanvuuren@wits.ac.za

More about the topic

I am tired of people not hearing each other, not sitting down to listen and connect on the level that can bring healing to rifts and wounds. So, Les, Tshego, and I sat down and decided to experiment with stories that might cross these rifts. We are still experimenting, and we are having fun doing it. Come join us and let’s find our way to each other through our stories.

What does it mean to catch flying pigs? Look at this : https://prezi.com/jxgstjc_ckmx/about-pig-catching/

Flying Pig for February: Aligning with Associates

Flying pig

What are the values that bind us?

How do these values help us grow the pie and share it?

 

Face to face Pig Catching in Johannesburg
TOPIC: Aligning with associates – The values that bind us.
DATE: 23 February
TIME:  8:30-11:30 – Experience – stay afterwards for more coffee and afterglow.
PLACE: Emakhaya Foyer 19th floor University Corner Building Corner of Jan Smuts and Jorissen Braamforntein.
FACILITATOR: PetroJanse van Vuuren
DRESS: Comfortable clothes you can stretch and move in
RSVP: by  Wed 21 Feb to petro@playingmantis.net

COST: R280/ $24   Pay with paypal: 

Online Pig Catching
TOPIC: Aligning with associates – The values that bind us.
DATE: 23 February
TIME:  14:45-16:00
PLACE: Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://zoom.us/j/406130239
FACILITATOR: PetroJanse van Vuuren
DRESS: Comfortable clothes you can stretch and move in
RSVP: by  Wed 21 Feb to petro@playingmantis.net

COST: R280/ $24   Pay with Paypal:

More about the topic

In view of my wanting to grow Playing Mantis as a resource for facilitators, it follows that some of these facilitators, as have already happened, would fall in love with the processes, make it their own and want more and more. This means that you can then become part of a network of people who use SNE to serve client needs, while Playing Mantis serve yours.

I have changed my mind a little since I sent out the muse-letter two weeks ago: I will be looking specifically at the ethical principles that we all want to build our work on and if we can agree on what they mean?

So, whether or not you have received the SNE training  you are welcome to chip in with your thoughts. If you have received the training, but we have lost touch, come too and maybe we can find synergy with where we are now.

Figuring out a new business relationship that is mutually beneficial AND where parties agree on the underlying values that the work should embody, can sometimes be like catching flying pigs – especially when money is scarce. Let’s grow the pie and share it – there is enough to go around.

RSVP: by  Wed 21 Feb to petro@playingmantis.net

Complete your success story spiral this Friday with Susan

Flying pig

Join us for Part 2 of:

How do I find time for meaningful focused work in the midst of living and surviving?

You are invited to catch flying pigs with us

Face to face Pig Catching in Johannesburg
TOPIC: Doing focused work amidst the business of living
DATES: Part 2 Fri 1 Dec. (Part 1 not needed to enjoy Part 2)
TIME: 8:30-11:30 – experience (Please come on time for coffee or tea, we start at 8:30 sharp.)
11:30-12:30 reflecting on the methodology
PLACE: 21st floor University Corner Building Corner of Jan Smuts and Jorissen Braamforntein.
FACILITATORS: PetroJanse van Vuuren and Susan Williams
COST: R350 for Part 1 only
R500 if you book in advance for Part 1and 2
DRESS: Comfortable clothes you can stretch and move in
RSVP: by  Wed 29 Nov to petro@playingmantis.net

Note on the online course:
We did not have enough interest in this version of the course to justify it. We will go back to the drawing board and try again with a different format. Let me know if you are interested so tht I can let you know when it happens. Thanks.

More about Susan Williams, my co-facilitator

Susan has an MA in Philosophy through Pretoria University. In her dissertation, she provided a perspective on ethical agency in complex adaptive systems through sense-making methodology and storytelling. She entrenches arts-based methods in her ethics practice to help organisations develop a culture of responsive accountability.  As a facilitator and strategic organisational storyteller, she uses her skill and experience in coaching, facilitation and training to engage organisational leaders and departmental teams to grow as individuals and value-adding employees, who fulfil their own and their business’s potential.  She says that SNE, together with other methods, provides her with a toolkit that works for every situation.

Susan Williams

Susan’s encounter with SNE

I met Petro several years ago on a cold, overcast winters day over a cup of coffee in Melville, and we told stories to each other. To this day, no meeting happens without at least two stories being shared.

Being a storyteller, the concept of SNE has intrigued me since that first encounter.  Strategic narrative embodiment processes are used to get diverse and unconnected people together in an interactive space in which they use their whole body to explore beliefs, feelings, and thoughts. Through these interactions they make connections between themselves and others, and with bodies in the world through which they move.

Movement and play become the vehicle for deep exploration, reflection and learning, which often result in a deeper understanding of oneself and the relationships that are co-created in a shared environment. This understanding, and subsequently, the questioning of the known and safe spaces, is the first, tentative movement towards transformation and living a life of integrity.

More on the topic

At the previous pig catching session we covered stages 1 to 4 of our plans to do more meaningful work in spite of our struggles to survive. Usually, as you try to make the plan happen, you hit obstacle after obstacle. Now it is time for step 5 to 7. Join us as we guide our success stories through failure, disappointment and procrastination.

IMPORTANT: You do not need have attended the previous session to get joy and value from this one.

You may read in the place of ‘meaningful deep work’ any of the following: time for studying further, time for writing, for painting or designing a new process, or just remembering what gives you courage and significance.  Perhaps you are making a career change and you need time to strategise and execute new ideas.

quil and writing

For the past 10 years my husband, Gerhi, have been figuring out how to write the elusive novel and this year he is cracking the mystery. During the same time I have produced a PhD and published a number of research papers. Through all this we have raised our children and worked either on our own businesses or on teaching. We have tried and failed in so many ways; we have also found ways to succeed. What the course shares with you are the narrative heuristics that will allow you to improvise your own strategies for accomplishing your meaningful work.

The pig catching experiments will become part of my own journey towards writing the online course and perhaps a book on the subject. For now I call the process: ‘The success story spiral’ and I would love you to come and experiment with me while at the same time focusing on your own meaningful work.

Book now to secure your place by sending me an email petro@playingmantis.net

About Pig Catching

Pig catching is what coaches and facilitators do when we chase the moment of insight that brings shift and transformation in our clients.
Please note: No pigs get harmed, our pigs are purely metaphorical and they have wings.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND?

Coaches, facilitators, game changers, thought leaders like you who can accept the following:

  1. This is not a showcase or sales event geared to impress or win you over. If you come, you already believe that metaphor, embodiment, improvisation and imagination are powerful, fun ways to bring about transformation and you want to know more about using them in coaching and facilitation.
  2. Experimentation and mistakes are part of the process.  You must be willing to play with ideas that may not work or may be a bit uncomfortable, but that could lead to new heights of freedom and insight.

Join our group on Facebook:

Upcoming dates: Fri 25 Aug and Fri 1 Dec.

WE’RE LOOKING FORWARD TO BEING INSPIRED BY YOU. OINK!

What can happen when you integrate Applied Improvisation and SNE with your own work

Sunrise skyline of Johannesburg

Last Quarter our Pig Catching process dealt with the question: ‘How can Africa become a global economic player? Janet du Preez from Tools of Greatness, facilitated the process and did a masterful job of blending her own work on employee engagement with the SNE methodology she learned from Playing Mantis.

(Remember Last week I posted about the Graphic Facilitation by Lita Currie at the session)

In the group was a mixture of organisation development practitioners and applied drama facilitators and both groups were mesmerized by the process. One of the applied d drama facilitators was deeply intrigued by Janet’s innovative use of well known processes. 

I will tell you of two such memorable moments here.

The props game reinvented

Janet du Preez
Janet du Preez
Janet used the very well known applied improvisation game in a very strategic manner. The game is sometimes called ‘Props’ and sometimes ‘This is not a water bottle /stick etc.’ Usually the game starts with a group standing in a circle with a single object in the centre, or sometimes a small number of different objects in the centre to choose from. Participants then take up the object (e.g. a water bottle) a and say ‘This is not a water bottle, it is a…’ and then they name something else e.g. a cell phone while at the same time using the water bottle as though it is a phone.

How Janet used Props

Instead of either placing one object in the middle of the circle for all to use, or placing a number of different objects to choose from, she gave everyone the same object, a stick of about two feet long.

Secondly, she did not require us to stand, but allowed us to stay seated in our circle.

Finally, instead of using the game as it often is just to warm up people’s brains and let them randomly come up with things the stick could be, she gave it a particular strategic frame in keeping with the principle of strategic intent as incorporated in the SNE (Strategic Narrative Embodiment) methodology.

We were to use the stick in the first part of the workshop as a way to name all the things that stand in the way of Africa’s economic flourishing. In the second part of the workshop we did the same exercise and used it to brain storm a picture of the ideal Africa. At the end of each round she asked the group to consolidate and integrate the ideas into a single representation by making tableaux – image with their bodies. In between the two rounds Janet did a number of other exercises to lend depth to the conversation.

Reflecting on the exercise, participants experienced elevated levels of creativity coupled with increased levels of safety. Sitting down instead of standing up and being able to hold on to their stick throughout the exercise removed a sense of perpetual vulnerability that they often associate with this exercise. Layering it with the strategic frame and integrating it into a larger design with tableaus and other processes, contributed depth and meaning to the experience.

Integrating individual with group images

It is a common practice to let participants build a real image, then an ideal image and then to transition them from a real to an ideal image using wome kind of process Boal style. My experience is that the practitioner usually chooses to work either with group images, or individual images. Janet used a combination of both in a startling manner.

Graphic of Pig Catching session captured by Lita Currie
Graphic of Pig Catching session captured by Lita Currie

To transition the thinking from current obstacles to future ideal image, Janet used the SNE technique called ‘Moving Story structure’. The process is a rather involved technique where the individual moves through a series of individual images that include ones that express our default reactions to obstacles and our defense reactions as well as idealised responses that are not practical etc. The end result is a clear understanding of what is real and practical actions we can take right now to get unstuck and closer to where we want to go.

While this is originally an individual embodiment process, Janet combined the individual work with group work so that we each had a clear experiential knowledge of how we each contribute either to the success or failure of the collective endeavour.

If you take in the fact that the group of people in the room were diverse and representative of various demographic groups of people in our country, such an experience was nothing less than moving and hopeful. Each of us left with a clear understanding of how we may be hindering collective flourishing and what we may be able to do as individuals to move into a thriving Africa.

I felt deeply moved by what happens when people of diverse back grounds and skill come together under the guidance of a masterful and gutsy facilitator like Janet: unusual and powerful things happen.

Join us for the next Pig Catching session on 25 August face to face or online at a later date (to be confirmed). This time our flying pig is: “How do I find time for meaningful deep work in the midst of the chaos of living and surviving?” Read more next week or in the quarterly Muse-letter – subscribe here.

How to capture a workshop process with pictures

Catching Pigs graphic facilitation

Graphic facilitation with 3Stick Men

I met Lita Currie two and half years ago when I was working on a process design for SAB and she was working there. Since then Lita had started her own facilitation consultancy in Graphic facilitation. To market her work, she generously did the graphic harvesting of our last Pig Catching session.

The large rolls of paper are put up on my office wall and everyone who walks in first says “Wow, beautiful handwriting!” and then: “What is it??” I explain that it is graphic facilitation and that it is a documentation of one of my workshop processes done by Lita from 3Stickmen.

It never fails to impress, but more than that, people see the value of it as a meaningful documentation process. No-one is likely to stick it in a drawer and forget about it.

If you want to get Lita to do this for you, or learn from her how to do it yourself, Contact her or visit the 3Stickmen website.

Catching Flying Pigs graphic facilitation 2

Our Pig Catching process she captured dealt with the question: ‘How do we put Africa on the global economic map?‘ Janet du Preez who facilitated the process did a masterful job of blending her own work on employee engagement with the SNE methodology she has learned from Playing Mantis.

In the group was a mixture of organisation development practitioners and applied drama facilitators and both groups were mesmerized by the process. One of the applied drama facilitators was deeply intrigued by Janet’s innovative use of well known processes.

Read more about this next week.

More about Lita and 3Stickmen

Are people falling asleep in your training sessions?

Worried that your conference will be boring?

Use hand-drawn pictures created in real time to promote interest and engagement! Let us create a visual record of your conference, your workshop or your meeting. Your audience will remember it forever.

Your audience can see the discussion taking place as it is captured on a big piece of paper. It helps people think more creatively, make connections previously not seen and create commitment and engagement.

Contact 3Stickmen for a free quote.

Or visit the 3Stickmen website.

3Stickmen Intro to Graphic Facilitation intro course

How can we vehemently disagree and still remain good friends, colleagues or neighbours?

You are invited to catch flying pigs with us

Long time pig catcher Alison Gitelson will be facilitating.

Face to face Pig Catching in Johannesburg
TOPIC: How can we vehemently disagree and still remain good friends, colleagues or neighbours?
DATE: Fri 24 Feb
TIME: 7:15 am to 10:30 am – experience
10:45am – 12:00 reflecting on the methodology
Please come on time for coffee or tea, we start at 7:30 sharp.
PLACE: 305 Long Avenue Ferndale
PRICE: R250
DRESS: Comfortable clothes you can stretch and move in
Coffee, tea, muffins and fruit on arrival.
Contact us to book

Online Pig Catching
TOPIC: How can we vehemently disagree and still remain good friends, colleagues or neighbours?
DATE:13, 15 and 22 Mar (Mon, Wed and Wed)
TIME: 20:00-21:15 – experience
PLACE: a ZOOM room (we will send link)
COST: R250 or $20
RSVP by Wed 8 Mar to

More on the topic

Much is said and written about finding alignment; harmonizing; finding the win-win; integrating; being a happy family. What happens if we don’t agree? Why should we agree? Few things are simply right or wrong: there are multiple perspectives, multiple truths and even many different ways to achieve the same result.

The more diverse the group the more likely there will be disagreements. And that is part of the benefit of diversity. It takes us away from group think. This article explains how diversity makes us smarter.
However the reality is often an illusion of agreement on the surface with bubbling resentment underneath.

Let’s explore how we can use SNE (Strategic Narrative Embodiment) to discover our individual ways to
handle disagreement;

  • give and receive feedback;
  • feel curious instead of threatened;
  • be open to other perspectives;
  • be assertive without aggression;
  • have the courage to tackle the tough stuff!

My hope is that we will find tools we can use to help our clients and communities.
 – by Alison Gitelson who will be co-hosting Pig Catching sessions in February and March.

About Pig Catching

Pig catching is what coaches and facilitators do when we chase the moment of insight that brings shift and transformation in our clients.
Please note: No pigs get harmed, our pigs are purely metaphorical and they have wings.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND?

Coaches, facilitators, game changers, thought leaders like you who can accept the following
1        This is not a showcase or sales event geared to impress or win you over. If you come, you already believe that metaphor, embodiment, improvisation and imagination are powerful, fun ways to bring about transformation and you want to know more about using them in coaching and facilitation.
2        Experimentation and mistakes are part of the process.  You must be willing to play with ideas that may not work or may be a bit uncomfortable, but that could lead to new heights of freedom and insight.

Join our group on Facebook:
About  Alison Gitelson (her words)

I am a maximizer, facilitator and management enabler.  Similar to many of you.
In 2006, after twenty years in business and careers in optometry, IT and transformation, I started CanBeeDone to help individuals be the best they can be, and managers to become much, much better managers and leaders. Today I describe what I do as “working with leader-managers to find their new and better way of doing business so that they, their staff and the business all thrive”.
Over the years I have grown my talents and my toolbox as a facilitator. I met Petro in 2013. Each time I was at an event where she facilitated using applied improv games I was as nervous as anything when we started. But each time I was excited at the outcomes: at the power of the tool for discovering one’s own answers and for changing behaviour. So I began introducing AI games into my programmes. I combined them with the sharing of concepts and theories, having focused dialogue and doing other participative exercises. Then in November 2014 I did the Essentials in SNE three day course with Petro.

Since then I have incorporated SNE (strategic narrative embodiment) tools and techniques into most of my workshops, talks and programmes; combining them with my other tools. It enhances work which was already powerful and makes it uniquely me.

I’ve worked with groups as diverse as high school pupils, introverted coaching clients, middle and senior managers, illiterate community members and IT technicians.
I have plenty to learn and plenty of areas where I am still working out how best to use SNE to bring about the shifts we need in society and in business. Hence my wish that you will join me to learn and grow at this Pig Catching. And then perhaps at another session we can help you experiment with some of your ideas.”

WE’RE LOOKING FORWARD TO BEING INSPIRED BY YOU. OINK!

Contact us to book

Join our group on Facebook: