Remember Murphy’s Law: “Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.” Be prepared.
Periodically do spontaneous exercises on the theme of crisis management.
- During long-term practice sessions, remove a prop or other item integral to the team’s problem solution and ask them to continue their skit to the end. This allows the team to practice how they will handle problems during competition.
- Let the team decide what they would need in an emergency repair kit to take to the tournament.
- Have the team make a list of all the things that could go wrong and how they would deal with it.
Teams should discuss and practice what they’ll do if something breaks or does not work during their performance. Is it is better to continue with their solution and receive penalty points or stop to fix the broken prop, potentially running out of time? Would points scored by continuing offset the penalty points incurred for having that prop not work correctly?
Avoid a few tournament day crises by reminding the team that it is possible for the starting position to be on either side of the stage. Have them figure out how they will set up their props and set for both possibilities. Team members should decide and practice set-up responsibilities ahead of time.
Have the team think about what they will do if one of the team members is sick on the day of the tournament, both for the long-term skit and for the spontaneous competition.