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Facilitation

Our magic potion for experience design has 4 ingredients

By | Facilitation, Learning Design, Magical Moments

Our learning experience design methodology is based on the key goal of creating memorable moments for our clients. To do this we harness the power of magic. Then we and add a sprinkle of pride, insight and connection. See how each of these ingredients helps us achieve our goal… 

An experience is many things… it can happen in person or remotely and it makes you think, laugh, learn or be wow’d. It can be a reflection session, team activities, a walk or learning magic tricks. Experiences bring people together, bonding them over a shared moment.

What makes a moment memorable?

Attention, novelty and emotion do. It goes without saying that participants should be engaged and have fun. This paves the way for landing – and embedding – crucial learnings so that the experience lives on. We want people to talk about what they experienced, gush about it even! When that happens, participants become ambassadors for a new way of being or champion bringing new company values to life. And when that happens, we know we’ve succeeded in creating a memorable moment. 

One workshop can’t change everything, but it can kick start a new way of thinking about work and a new perspective on peoples’ roles within their company. Imagine the power of many moments!

Where do we start?

Before designing an experience, our learning designers ask…

  • How can we use the power of magic to elevate everyday moments and bring learning to life?
  • How might the experiences we create help people feel proud by breaking their limiting beliefs?
  • How might we spark insights for people to develop their self- and social awareness?
  • How might we cultivate deeper connections between people?

Elevate learning

Psychological research suggests that learning to perform magic tricks can create a wide range of benefits, including enhanced creativity (Wiseman, Wiles & Watt, 2021), and boosted social skills and self-esteem (Bagienski & Kuhn, 2019). Moreover, magic-based interventions show that magic tricks can be used to effectively communicate about a variety of topics, delivering educational messages in an entertaining way (Wiseman & Watt, 2018). Likewise, performing magic tricks helps communicate specific concepts in organisational behaviour (Krell & Dobson, 1999). There’s a lot of psychology behind the use of magic!

Ignite pride

We want people to feel valued, listened to and appreciated. In turn, they come to understand and appreciate colleagues in ways they may not have before. Participants leave our sessions with a renewed sense of joy and pride in their work. And what’s the long tail of feeling proud at work? Increased loyalty, championing the company, a better sense of community and belonging, and feeling more motivated. Ta-da! 

Unlock insights

When we start working with clients, we take time to understand what’s going on for them, particularly why they need a learning experience. We ask – why now, what’s the challenge they’re facing, who is this for, how do they want participants to feel afterwards, what should they have learned… Questions questions! The more we understand, the better we can get to the heart of what matters, designing an experience that hits the mark and provides insight – about participants, about their team, about their work and about the organisation as a whole. Abracademy workshops are always fun, but the insights participants leave with are truly magical. Who needs a crystal ball?!

Connect people

You’ve read this a thousand times in recent months – now more than ever, keeping colleagues connected is crucial. Whether it’s new joiners who have yet to meet colleagues properly or existing team members, making sure people know and understand one another will prevent a mind-blowing array of communication problems… Doubts that become toxic, questions that never get answered, questions that shouldn’t need asking, only receiving feedback when something goes wrong, not knowing what anyone else is doing, not having the most recent updates. The list is long. We bring people together as colleagues and as human beings. Our personal lives can affect how we show up at work so if you know your colleagues well, you’ll have more empathy and be a stronger team. We enable connections between people that continue long after the workshops have finished!

Here’s some more resources on experience design that you might find interesting:

 

References

  • Bagienski, S., & Kuhn, G. (2019). The crossroads of magic and wellbeing: A review of wellbeing-focused magic programs, empirical studies, and conceivable theories. International Journal of Wellbeing, 9(2), 41-65.
  • Heath, D. and Heath, C. (2019). The Power of Moments. Random House UK.
  • Krell, T. C., & Dobson, J. J. (1999). The use of magic in teaching organizational behavior. Journal of Management Education, 23(1), 44-52.
  • Wiseman, R., & Watt, C. (2018). Achieving the impossible: a review of magic-based interventions and their effects on wellbeing. PeerJ, 6, e6081.
  • Wiseman, R., Wiles, A., & Watt, C. (2021). Conjuring up creativity: the effect of performing magic tricks on divergent thinking. PeerJ, 9, e11289.

Jaxx can capture your L&D dreams!

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Sara Ramos

By | Facilitation, Magical Moments, Magilitator, Team
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Sara Ramos

Community Wizard

Facilitator

Sara is passionate about learning and bringing people together to create impactful shared experiences. In her eagerness to challenge the status quo, Sara seeks alternative ways to learn, work, live and relate to others.

She designs meaningful learning experiences and creates the conditions for great collaboration. She achieves that by holding space for others, asking questions and allowing collective intelligence to emerge.

She works as a freelance Learning Designer and Facilitator, and hosts a podcast called Learning Day: https://learningday.community

Sara's superpowers:

★ Creating safe spaces

★ Singing

★ Productive procrastination

Abracademy

We’re a diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy ♥

Meet the team

"Once the imagination is unshackled, liberation is limitless"

Walidah Imarisha

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Alex Lyons

By | Facilitation, Magical Moments, Magilitator, Team
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Alex Lyons

Word Wizard

Facilitator

Alex facilitates communication and connection wherever its needed most. Nothing matters more to him than being true to who we say we are. He has a background as a media, communications and culture specialist, TEDx host and speaker coach, and an equity, diversity & inclusion consultant. Alex blooms most when helping others to bring integrity and heart into their words. Fair warning though, Alex will talk your ear off about the worlds and works of Ursula K Le Guin or everything Wonder Woman has taught him about the power of love to change the world ⚡💖

Alex's superpowers:

★ Warm grins

★ Wise words

★ Wonderful clarity

Abracademy

We’re a diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy ♥

Meet the team

"Once the imagination is unshackled, liberation is limitless"

Walidah Imarisha

Contact us

Say hello

Tiu de Haan

By | Curiosity, Facilitation, Magilitator, Storytelling, Team, Wonder
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Tiu de Haan

Wonder Woman

Facilitator

Tiu is an Oxford-educated creative facilitator, ritual designer and idea doula. She helps people shift their perspective to remember the magic in the mundane. Her work is all about creating moments of meaning. Bespoke micro-adventures that connect us to ourselves, each other and our own creativity.

Tiu has worked with Google, the World Economic Foundation, L'Oréal and the UN. She's also a visiting lecturer at UAL. She collaborates with neuroscientists, quantum physicists and chemists to create experiences that wake up our sense of wonder.

Tiu teaches creative thinking and imaginative awakening to a variety of organisations. She consults for global brands on rituals for beauty, food and wellbeing, as well as times of transition and organisational change. Her Tedx talk, ‘Why we still need ritual’, is about the art of celebrating the transitions of life, love and death.

Tiu's superpowers are:

  • Imaginative inspiration

  • Engineering serendipity

  • Creating magical mini adventures

Abracademy

We’re a diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy ♥

Meet the team

"Once the imagination is unshackled, liberation is limitless"

Walidah Imarisha

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Vanessa Faloye

By | Belief, Curiosity, Education, Facilitation, Magical Moments, Magilitator, Team
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Vanessa Faloye

The Enchantress

Facilitator

Vanessa works with change-making organisations to design and deliver social justice education, and strategy. Together, they challenge and transform systems of power by dismantling the intersectional inequities that uphold them. As a trainer-facilitator, she delivers curricula in anti-oppression, movement-building and systems thinking.

Her big dream is to build an activist training ground in Spain that invites retreat, resource and rehearsal for the revolution, through critical pedagogy, transformative justice and healing practice. Needless to say, Vanessa’s got big plans when it comes to our collective liberation and a non-binary world. A world where we all get to show up as our whole, free, joyous and magical selves.

In other news, Vanessa loves reading, writing, traveling, dancing, mixing music, speaking Spanish, Chinese takeaway, odd socks and Bollywood. She's originally from Nigeria. Born and raised in London, and grew up in Oxford, UK. Her favourite food is her Mum's jollof rice. "Thank God it's vegan".

Vanessa's superpowers are:

  • Empathy
  • Determination 
  • Laughter

Abracademy

We’re a diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy ♥

Meet the team

"Once the imagination is unshackled, liberation is limitless"

Walidah Imarisha

Contact us

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Francisco Dimitri

By | Belief, Curiosity, Education, Facilitation, Food for thought, Leadership, Learning and development, Magical Moments, Magilitator, Team, Wonder
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Francisco Dimitri

Abracademy collaborator

Specialist in Wonder

Francesco is an award-winning author, a speaker and trainer, and a business storyteller. He's been writing in many different forms, from nonfiction and essays to fiction, comics, cinema, digital media and for magazines.

Francesco's superpowers are:

  • Telling stories
  • Lighting fires 
  • Searching and researching

Abracademy

We’re a diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy ♥

Meet the team

"With the hybrid world of work, the model we should study is online dating! Here, obnoxious people can seem fine, and vice versa. We need to train ourselves to spot different cues in online interactions."

Francisco

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Rubens Filho

By | Belief, Change management, Client management, Curiosity, Education, Facilitation, Leadership, Magical Moments, Magicians, Magilitator, Schools, Storytelling, Team, Wonder
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Rubens Filho

Director of Spells

aka Co-founder, CEO and Magilitator

Rubens' background is diverse, to say the least! He followed the family tradition and started his working life as a lawyer in Brazil. After ten years and a stint in NY however, he realised law wasn’t the right place for him. He made the decision to return to Brazil and moved into ad-land as a Copywriter. He eventually became a Creative Director at Ogilvy, leading many award-winning campaigns for global clients. In 2012 Rubens brought his family to the UK to do a Masters in Digital Media Management at Hyper Island. This was to be another pivotal point in his career and in 2013, he founded Abracademy with the dream of helping people grow, personally and professionally.

Rubens' Superpowers

  • Creativity
  • A magical leader
  • Disruptive innovation

Rubens has brought magic to these companies

Meet the rest of our team

We’re a skilled and diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy.

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In this world of ever-increasing technology, we need to become more human!

Rubens FilhoAbracademy's Co-founder

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Priya Ghai

By | Belief, Client management, Curiosity, Facilitation, Leadership, Learning and development, Learning Design, Magical Moments, Magilitator, Team, Wonder

Priya Ghai

Mind Master

Head of Learning

Priya is a highly experienced and gifted facilitator - a dynamo at shifting group energies to create amazing learning experiences. She holds groups together enabling courageous, playful and powerful environments for personal and professional development.

Background

Priya has traveled the world leading workshops and gathering collective intelligence, pushing the way organisations work. She has designed change programmes for corporate clients including the Ministry of Justice and HSBC, and she has helped start ups and SMEs form strategies to own their markets, moving forward as united organisations. Priya cares deeply for social justice and she’s on a mission to make workplaces more inclusive, creating a sense of belonging for everyone.

Priya's Superpowers

  • Empathy
  • Inclusivity
  • Energy

Priya has brought magic to these companies

Meet the rest of our team

We’re a skilled and diverse team of magicians, facilitators, learning designers, strategists, communicators, scientists and creatives who love what we do at Abracademy.

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Contact Priya and the team

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