Research Output

Transferring soft skills from the performing arts curriculum to business–a German-Based exploration into the possibilities for training management consultants.

  Recent research findings have reinforced the importance of soft skills for managerial
success. Consequently, there is an ongoing practical need for and research interest in
effective soft skill training. In order to improve the soft skills of their employees,
companies have begun to turn to performing artists in the hope of achieving a high
training effect. While this phenomenon has created excitement, it has hardly been the
subject of serious investigation guided by research questions and executed research
methodologies. In particular, hardly any insights exist into the exercises artists use when
providing soft skill training and coaching for a business audience. In order to explore
such activities in a systematic way, this thesis turns the attention to the performing arts
higher education curriculum for identifying relevant exercise categories and for linking
them to soft skills. This is accomplished through in-depth interviews conducted with
classical singing and drama teachers in Germany. In order to achieve a transfer to the
business world, HR representatives from German-based management consulting firms
are also questioned through in-depth interviews in order to explore relevant soft skills
addressable by performing arts interventions. The results show transfer links between
eight performing arts curriculum items and seven soft skill categories. Apart from
exploring the relationship between arts-based exercises and managerial soft skills, the
research results confirm the benefit rationale for arts-based training and highlight
success factors. The outcomes are visualised in a suggestive model aimed at providing a
systematic orientation for arts-based trainers and for organisations considering soft skill
training based on the performing arts. However, the research has also limitations,
especially a too conservative number of connections between performing arts curricular
items and soft skill categories. Other limitations include a regional and cultural focus on
Germany, as well as the reduction of arts-based training activities to the boundaries of
formal performing arts education. These shortcomings are used for motivating future
research.

  • Type:

    Thesis

  • Date:

    31 March 2012

  • Publication Status:

    Unpublished

  • Library of Congress:

    HD28 Management. Industrial Management

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    658 General management

Citation

Havar-Simonovich, T. Transferring soft skills from the performing arts curriculum to business–a German-Based exploration into the possibilities for training management consultants. (Thesis). Edinburgh Napier University. Retrieved from http://researchrepository.napier.ac.uk/id/eprint/5340

Keywords

Soft skill training; performing arts; coaching; arts-based exercises;

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