The situation: Your boss or client is vague with directions, but expects tasks to be done in a specific way, and is very critical of your performance. You're stumped on how to ask the right questions and pull out the information you need to do your job well.

The strategy: Explain that you ultimately want to help him. Illustrate that you're "trying to make him so freaking happy he won't be able to believe it," says Chalfant. "If you can get him to understand that, then usually he'll want to go there with you."

Trust is a big part of improv, and sometimes it takes a lot of reassurance to establish that trust. "It's the same thing if there's somebody in a scene who is persistently blocking, saying 'no' or canceling opportunities," Chalfant says. "Once they realize that you're really trying to go somewhere with them, and you'll go anywhere, then usually they'll have that light-bulb-moment and say 'yes' to something and let the scene progress." (Click here for 4 Subtle Signs Your Boss Hates You.)

The situation: Your boss presents the office with a business strategy that's outdated, uninformed, or just plain awful. Meanwhile, you have a more efficient and fruitful plan in your back pocket, but office politics might make it difficult for your idea to see the light of day. Without offending the big guy, you need to convince him to go with your idea instead of his own.

The strategy: Test out both ideas. Good improv involves trying multiple things at the same time--some fail and some succeed, but you keep trying. "This is very much an either-or scenario," says Chalfant. "A lot of times people overlook the ability to try more than one thing at once."

"Let's say we're trying four different strategies for something. You must be comfortable that one, two or even three might fail, and that doesn't mean the people who championed those ideas are losers or need to be canned," he says. Risk taking is essential to improv, and it's also a cornerstone of progressive businesses, since failure presents an opportunity to learn. "The ability to take risks collaboratively and not freak out when they don't always pay off is a key to success."

Traveling on business or for pleasure? Steer clear of The Filthiest Thing in Your Hotel Room--click to find out what it is!