Second City and Compliance

One of the surprises of Compliance Week 2010 is the attendance of Second City. I only thought of them as the comedy improv troupe working in Chicago and Toronto. Second City has a long history of great comedians learning their craft and performing for them. Gilda Radner, John Belushi, Tina Fey and Chris Farley are just a few of the stars and superstars that have come through Second City.

About 15 years ago they launched a corporate communications division. Their approach? Humor is an effective device for addressing tough subjects and improvisation is great tool for open, honest communication, creativity and professional development.

I was able to attend a closed door session at Compliance Week 2010, working on personal communications. It was an interesting, informative and fun session.

Engage and Connect: Improvisation as a Tool for Open, Honest Communication:
For many companies, a common ethics and compliance challenge is in finding fresh ways to make important topics relevant to their employees—engaging individual contributors and management in the conversation and creating a willingness to discuss tough subjects and grey-zone issues. Second City Communications, the business solutions division of the world-famous comedy theatre, will discuss how they’ve successfully utilized improvisation, humor, and learning methods to help clients improve ethics/compliance education and awareness. This session will include interactive exercises, small-group work, facilitated discussion, and multimedia to showcase how to create conversation, gain stronger insights, and make ethics and compliance topics more relevant for your global workforce. It featured Second City Communications Producer and Director of Learning Sarah Finch and Lee Smart.

Second City Communications has a new line for ethics and compliance. (See Second City Ethics and Compliance FAQ)

We’ll see more of them when they are on the main stage for the closing wrap-up.

, , , ,


  1. Second City on the Stage at Compliance Week 2010 Conference | Compliance Building - May 26, 2010

    […] played a video from my earlier session at the conference: Second City and Compliance. They then used those compliance challenges in an improv skit, with Lee and the talent back on […]

  2. Compliance and Humor | Compliance Building - June 17, 2010

    […] the Compliance Week 2010 Conference I was surprised to discover that the improv comedy group, Second City, had dived into the world of […]