I think you may be puzzled about the meaning of “acting skills for businessmen”. Why do they need it? Will they be taught “how to put on masks and show off”? I’ll try to provide an answer that will make it clear.
Why do businessmen need it?
We give them practical assistance in performing one of the most complicated tasks in business: getting their way with people, getting what they want from people and, more exactly, eliciting desirable moods, thoughts and actions. We teach them how to manage other people in the widest sense of the word.
In the majority of cases the leaders and owners of companies are clever persons of strong character. They know exactly what they want and develop irreproachable plans. But in order to implement these plans with minimum expenditure of effort, or to reach the goal within the shortest period of time (which is often the critical issue), it is necessary to communicate with people in suitable ways in order to make them assist you and promote the implementation of your plans.
The key issues in managing people are understanding others, self-control, and skill in motivating others to act appropriately by means of your thoughts, feelings and emotions.
In order to manage other people three requirements should be met.
First of all, you should have a definite understanding of what you would like to gain from the other person or what you would like to accomplish together with the other person. (Usually this is not a problem for the majority of businessmen.)
Secondly, you should have complete personal information about the other person and his current condition. (Here intuition is required).
The third challenge is to influence the other person effectively by means of your individual abilities. (Here you will need skill in controlling both the technical apparatus of your voice and body, and the state of your soul.)
Are they taught there to “put on masks” and “pull people’s legs”?
We are not teaching play-acting or adoption of “masks”, but rather are teaching our students to become natural: our efforts enable them to open their own inner worlds. As a student, you will be taught to be yourself and reveal your various individual characteristics in different situations, not to conceal their essence behing different masks. We teach you to feel sensitive to other people, to control your inner world, to be the owner of your voice and body apparatus, and to manage other people by means of your personal abilities. The result of our teaching is that people wish to communicate with you; they would like to undertake joint activity with you; you simply “attract” them; they would like to follow you as they consider you an outstanding person.
The topic of “masks” and natural behaviour arises rather often during our talks with potential students. It is so important that we devote additional time to this issue.
Each phenomenon has two sides; one might say that there is always authenticity and falsification. It may be difficult to make this situation clear. For instance, in the jeweller’s practice, for any jewel its imitation or falsification may be found. In the case of a precious stone processed by an experienced jeweler, any dilettante will be able to distinguish the original from the falsification, as the true jewel, acquiring a perfect shape, will radiate sensuous beauty. Glazier crystals after processing by a jeweller become jewels – diamonds. The same parallel may be drawn between true acting skills used by a strong individual, and play-acting, used by a person to hide his characteristic features.
I will mention only two issues involved in play-acting.
Among us there are many people who are always playing some role: sometimes it is the very busy lady, sometimes the extremely cordial gentlemen, and so on. We become accustomed to our roles and behave accordingly; it is not our inner world and natural features that determine our behaviour. As a result, we miss favourable opportunities in life because of estimating everything around us from the point of view of a particular role, but not from our own point of view. Sometimes you play a role in order to impress your interlocutor or to attain some goal. In this case it is impossible to take part in communication to the fullest extent, as your attention is diverted by play-acting. As an inevitable consequence your inner world disintegrates. The absence of unity results in stress and efforts to control yourself, and the paradox is that this situation prevents your plans from being implemented. Natural thoughts and behaviour may serve as a source of your vitality when tension, which is necessary to play fixed roles and which consumes your energy, disappears.
We are not always aware that insincerity has a ruinous effect on our relationships. What is the main point for you in human communication? Is it words and, related to these words, feelings and intentions? This means that trust and sincerity are very important! First of all, relations of trust should be created, as all your words have no meaning for people unless they feel that you are sincere. And trust may be stimulated by natural behaviour during communication, natural movements of your body, as well as the natural sound of your voice. Being natural from all points of view, the person becomes a bright individual who attracts the attention of others. Natural behaviour gives power and energy. A natural person is an absolutely perfect one; such a person may be involved in any process and work effectively at an intuitive level. A mature person who makes use of intuition (an ability which we teach the person to use) will never be deceived by play-acting, as intuition easily penetrates the protective covering of “masks”; and his strong feelings affect the other person. Touch, sight, hearing, or logic may deceive you, but intuition will never do so.
True acting skills and a high-level individual always accompany each other. They virtually cannot exist without one another, since the individual’s high level entails understanding of the world and its laws, self understanding, and skill in interacting with other people.
High-level people possess a more complete picture of the real world. They think in terms of other categories, live according to “other laws”. They are free from conventionalities.
In the world there have always been leaders and followers; the elite and the rest. Each elite representative is elite in “his” particular circle: financial business, administrative authorities, fashion, medicine, education and so on. In other circles, not their own, they follow somebody else. And they are quite aware of the fact when they make their choice of services, goods and ideas from the leaders in different circles, who constitute the same elite in those fields as they are in their own. Meanwhile, most people simply follow the direction in which they are pointed, and choose according to the principle “the cheaper, the better”.
At the end of this introduction I’ll simply put forward a few ideas which may arouse your interest.
Contact with other people as well as contact with yourself determines all aspects of your life. It is important to know what you have gained as a result of your communication. Are you satisfied, are you happy or not?
The manner in which the person controls his emotion determines his feelings. The person’s feelings determine his behaviour. Our behaviour determines our relations with other people, influencing the success or failure of our actions.
In any situation a strong person proves to be the winner. The true force is that which gives you the power to control yourself and other people.
The meaning is hidden not in words, but inside people.
To know something and to have the skill to put your knowledge into practice are quite different things.