Monday, July 30, 2007

Serious Games: The Work Model Of The Future

Serious Gaming racks up points as the work model of the future

Via: Entrepreneur Magazine - August 2007

Some government agencies and companies are kicking around the idea of turning the desktop into a game where employees interact in a game format all day.

Video-gaming on the job makes sense to John Beck, co-author of The Kids Are Alright: How the Gamer Generation™ is Changing the Workplace. In the book , he shows how growing up playing video games actually helps kids be more sociable, have a greater understanding of strategic thinking and will help them become better leaders later in life.

Gamers are more social. Gamers regularly talk to each other about strategies, watch while others play (taking turns), and compete againsteach other either in the same room or remotely. In the workplace, they value other people more than non-gamers do, and firmly believe in teamwork. This is because they’ve experienced early on what working together can accomplish through games.

Gamers are natural strategic thinkers. Every game involves countless risk and reward decisions. In thousands of hours of practice, gamers learn to take risks without being reckless. They also learn to brush off failure; they’ve crashed and burned thousands of times before they even learn to drive. As adults, we find them resilient—optimistic and determined to keep working at problems.

Gamers are prepared to be great leaders. They’re confident, motivated, and expect a lot of themselves—in any area they care about. Like entrepreneurs, they want to rely on their own abilities. They care more about their companies. And they have a measurably broader skill set for leading groups—what company couldn’t use people like this?

The world our kids will inherit will be quite different from what we know today. It will change faster than ever before, and kids will need skills that will prepare them to deal with that change. Games are the perfect practice ground for developing the ability to adapt to rapidly changing rules in a safe, consequence-free environment. That’s why kids like them so much – because no matter how many times they fail, they know they’ll always be given another chance to get it right.

Video games "are played at such a young age that the brain's neuropathways are being formed around game logic," Beck says.