Not Just Fun and Games – Games As Corporate Training Tools

Games, which engage participants in the learning process and encourage interaction, make ideal training tools. But say “game” to adult learners and you may get a unanimous groan. The idea that training can be fast-paced, engaging, and fun doesn’t match the typical adult concept of learning, so games may be viewed as play rather than serious training.

But a game appropriate for the training situation and relevant to the learner has the power to challenge this idea while generating results. Used alone, or as part of a larger training initiative, games can measure existing knowledge, present an organizational situation, or illustrate a point. They can demonstrate successful behaviors and help learners develop skills that create value for their organizations.

Games should be engaging and fun, but their real substance lies in form and function. Here are some important elements that make a game a successful learning experience.

Make sure it’s relevant. Games are effective when they provide knowledge, skills, or insight to business challenges. Games that address real-life situations or organizational issues have far greater results than a game played for its own sake, or to “liven up” a training session.

Look for proven research and theories. The market is filled with games of every type for virtually every training situation – board, card, and web or video-based games. Be certain the game’s marketing doesn’t overshadow its credentials. As with any training tool, those designed on proven research and recognized learning theories provide the best results.

Keep it simple. Even if the game is a perfect match for the training topic, it is only useful if participants can quickly grasp its objective and understand how it is played. Over-complicated or confusing games won’t generate results. Clear directions and rules help learning process continue quickly and smoothly.

Why Games Work

Games embody experiential learning by immersing participants in the learning experience, which is the best means of getting learning to “stick.” For example, a team building game that requires all players to participate, develop common strategies for overcoming obstacles and reaching goals, and face consequences or reap rewards as a team, encourages memorable, easily transferable learning. By providing the opportunity for processing new information and practicing new workplace skills, games create a comfortable learning environment where learners become active participants in the learning process.

HRDQ (www.HRDQ.com) is a trusted developer of soft-skills learning solutions that help to improve the performance of individuals, teams, and organizations. We offer a wide range of resources and services, from ready-to-train assessments, hands-on games, and programs to facilitator certification, custom development, and more.

At HRDQ, we believe an experiential approach is the best catalyst for adult learning. Our unique Experiential Learning Model has been the core of what we do for more than 30 years. Combining the best of organizational learning theory and proven facilitation methods with an appreciation for adult learning styles, our philosophy initiates and inspires lasting change.

Why Playing Online Games Is Beneficial

The appeal of online games has never been more popular today than it was a few decades ago. Thanks to an ever increase in access to the internet and constant development in visuals and graphics with realistic features, online gaming is here to stay. In fact, research shows that one in every five internet user visits gaming sites and this number will steadily increase in the next few years as game developers use more advanced technological equipment to make games even more realistic. Although some people may claim that playing online games can be harmful, there are some health benefits with playing games online.

Boosting Memory and Cognitive Development

Games available in the internet are not exclusive, meaning that, players have access to a variety of games. One type of game is that can actually help boost your memory and develop your cognitive skills. We all know that humans normally do not use 100% of their brain function and if one does, often only one side is often used. Puzzles, trivia, logics and other problem solving games help improve brain function and this is not only in one part of the brain but in all areas of it. As the internet grows day by day, one has limitless sources of games, making it easier to challenge oneself with new and exciting activities to work on.

Gateway to Health and Recovery

People with health issues or those who are recovering from illness may find using online game tools helpful to speed up their recovery. Adults who have kids that are sick may also find games that will help kids understand their illness and make it easier for them to deal with such illness. Some games are not only entertaining but also educational making these ideal tools to not only foster creativity but also understanding. Some not-for-profit organizations also make use of online games to help educate kids and adults.

Improve Social Interaction

People that have social interaction problems or are too shy may find it hard to develop friendships in the real world. This dilemma is eliminated through playing online games especially the role-playing ones. Most of the games have an online community so one would not feel alone and can even foster friendships that can extend outside the virtual world. Another thing that is great about this is that one can be oneself and does not need to fake themselves just to be accepted as the virtual gaming community accepts and does not discriminate against age, race and gender.

Business Development Strategies – 4 Stages You Need to Understand

Business Development Strategies are presented here as a measure of how businesses can grow and develop over time. In his book, “Fire, Aim, Ready”, Michael Masterson does a splendid job of explaining the problems, challenges and opportunities connected with each stage of business development.Stage 1, Starting Out: You have just taken your business from an idea to actively running and developing a positive cash flow. ($0 – $1 million).Main Problem: You really don’t know what you are doing.Main Challenge: Making your first profitable sale.Main Opportunity: Achieving a critical mass of customers.Stage 2, The fast growth stage: Taking your business from the $1 million level to $2 million a year in profits. ($1 million to $10 million in revenue).Main Problem: You are breaking even or may even be losing money.Main Challenge: Creating many additional, profitable products quickly.Main Opportunity: Increasing cash flow and becoming profitable. Being cost effective is key to profitability.Stage 3, The adolescent stage: Take your business over the $10 million threshold with profits in the range of $2 million to $5 million. Revenue parameters are from $10 million to $50 million.Main Problem: Your systems are strained and your customers are noticing.Main Challenge: Turning chaos into order.Main Opportunity: Learning how to establish useful protocols and manage processes and procedures.Stage 4, The Stage of Maturity: Your business has now grown with revenues of $50 million to $100 million or higher.Main Problem: Sales slow down or even stall.Main Challenge: Becoming Entrepreneurial again.Main Opportunity: Getting the business to run itself.You may find that Business Development Strategies outlined herein may be relevant to you today. You may also find them to be more relevant at another time in your life. It is hoped that you will identify where your business is today and will make plans to deal with the challenges that lie ahead.