Before we discuss the reasons behind “Stupid Games,” we need to define what a Stupid Game is. It is a Stupid Game is any team-building game that is used to teach business concepts and concepts. I’m not willing to admit it: I’m not very good at playing these games, and I don’t particularly enjoy these games. However, I’d like to be honest in our relationship. Is that being vulnerable? Would you like to have a hug?
The most stupid Games can be a great way to teach businesses to be keen on improving their efficiency and performing in a manner that results in outcomes. For the past 20 years, we’ve utilized the method of experiential learning to teach and develop our clients. We refer to our work as experiential education is what a scholar might call it. To us, they’re “stupid” games and are beneficial because they provide corporate teams a chance to practice in which they can improve their abilities and increase their performance.
Time to Tent Poles
Here’s an example. This past Monday, I was working with a client I love who is committed to making the customer experience better. They’d conducted a thorough investigation about their company and found that their service was lower than the average of the industry. This is defensible. They’re putting all their energy and effort into improving their relationship with customers. Three task force groups were established, and on Monday, we met to discuss the recommendations they had to make to improve the way their customers are feeling about them.
At the beginning of the session, we started with the classic tent-pole drill. The exercise has been played before, and the participants were confident that they could succeed in this. I told them that the market was changing, so don’t be deceived by these tent poles since they were incredibly high-quality and unique from previously. I also stated that I was the client and that all they needed to do was to lower the tent pole down to the ground and then balance them on the index fingers. They would never forget to touch the stick. They had just three minutes to complete this. From my perspective as a consumer, the faster time is better.
The activity begins, the pole is moved upwards instead of downwards, and fingers aren’t touching people shout, and blame is attributed to someone. This is how it usually happens. The group then calms down and focuses, and some sort of organization takes place. Then, everyone is focused on the job at hand, but nobody talks to me, the client.
As a consumer I am, generally excluded from the conversation. At the moment, I am sitting at the end of the street crying. I’m calling in a quiet way while taking a bite of my thumb to ensure that I, as the customer, are being ignored completely. I am the one who is the victim at the end of the day.
Following the stupid game, We discussed the importance of good client service and paying close attention to the needs of the customer. In the debriefing, we discussed the events and the ways in which the customer could be more involved. We also discussed how it relates to what is happening currently within the company. There are always similarities between what happens in the games and the events in the real world. In the wake of playing games that are not very good, groups are suddenly able to see what’s lacking. These are things that they could not have thought of before.
I asked, “When you discovered that you’d be late, did you inform the customer?”
“No,” they said.
“Does this ever happen back at work?” I inquired. “Does the customer get notifying them of late arrivals or delivery times?”
“No,” they said
They’re beginning to realize it. They’re making those stares, first at me and then towards one another. Then I replied, “If you can fix this issue here and keep your customer informed, We have found that, back at your company, you’ll find strategies to ensure that your customers are informed.” This is the purpose of the games that are a joke and why they are effective.
So, back to this Article.
Let’s prove that these team-building exercises aren’t brilliant. You can be arguing (and I would say) that every game is a shambles. For a red-blooded American Male to believe that (AKA me) might be considered an act of heresy in Chicago, the land of Bears, Bulls, and Cubs. Our animals are our pride here at home in the Midwest. I could make a lot of sense in that statement, but it won’t.
Let me take a break from football. What happens? You’re playing the game and are on the line. Then you get the ball. Anyone who weighs more than 200 pounds jumps into the air and dives at you. What’s not to like? You can also play baseball. Small balls are launched at more than 90 MPH directly towards you. Then, you try to hit the ball with sticks. These are games that are considered to be “really enjoyable” in our society. You’re kidding, right?
The games that are designed to build teams are just as silly as regular games. Therefore, having the marble fall through the PVC pipe to be placed in a cup to celebrate winning-that must be as foolish as baseball or football. Or get a bunch of people to cross an imaginary river through walking across blue, squishy objects meant for a fitness center. It’s a huge success, especially even if it takes less than 10 minutes, is unreal. We do it with marbles in pipes and blue squishy stuff to act as step stones. It’s all silly games.
What is the reason? Do Any of This?
Groups, especially if they’re planning to work together, must train in a group. This is pretty evident. It is obvious. Army and Marines recognize the concept and refer to it as “boot camp.’ Dance and theater groups understand the idea and refer to it as a rehearsal.’ The sports teams understand it, and they refer to it as “practice.’ The business community doesn’t understand it, and for the most part, they don’t take any action. The majority of business groups show lower group performance. Do you see a pattern there?
That’s the point where the silly games kick into. They begin to appear like they’re not that stupid after all. They allow groups to look at their own behavior to see ways to enhance their performance. The idea is simple the idea that a group will solve problems in the same way because the members are similar. Group dynamics are the dynamics of the group. This is the case whether it’s playing the dumb game or at the “ranch.’
The main difference is that in the event that the group back at the ranch fails to perform well, there will be consequences both internally and with the customers. If the team does not succeed in the game, it’s an excellent opportunity to learn. There is no consequence to playing a game that isn’t fun, except for learning while having fun and laughing at your own self.
What can groups learn? Here are a few of the lessons that I’ve witnessed groups of people master repeatedly. Another game is an activity called The Tent Pole. Utilizing only one finger at a time, the team must bring the pole until it is level with the floor. There is no way to be able to disconnect from the bar. Fingers are all on the tent pole, trying to hold contact. The rod is pushed up rather than down. The crowd yells and screams at one another. The blame is thrown at a poor fellow. It’s a lot of entertainment.
One of the reasons people often use as a reason for their inefficiency is that nobody was named the leader, and that is the reason for the chaos that occurred. This is usually the most common and accepted explanation. But is it actually the case? In reality, we don’t realize what they’re actually missing; that is the ability to listen. Nobody is paying attention when the exercise begins.
Can You Hear Can You Hear Me?
Listening is what makes the difference. If a group can listen and collaborating, anyone can be a leader. When listening is in place, comprehension and solving problems happen naturally. People are able to focus and collaborate. Before that, there is the reaction of shouting and screaming. The ability to listen is one of the many lessons I have witnessed groups learn through playing silly games.
Another thing that groups learn from games that fail is the importance of practicing. For many teams, it’s an eye-opener to realize that improving your group’s performance takes the time to talk, learn and practice. If people understand that practice is essential while playing an unintentional game, The drama is slowed down, and the players relax. They realize that it’s okay to fail and learn from mistakes. This is the result of ‘practicing.’ We discover that we can be secure with one another.
Failure is an important lesson to be learned from the world of stupid games. There’s a failure; after that, there is a failure. As humans grow and learn, then there will be a failure. Failures can result from not doing the thing that has to be done, as well as when performing the wrong something. The issue is that there can be real consequences for mistakes made in the business.
I’ve seen companies play the same games repeatedly and still gain value from the games. Standards may change, the rules may vary, the things people learn are able to change, but it’s all about training and development.
In business, if the group is able to alienate a customer, the consequences are severe. In a game that is a shambles, when the group is disloyal to the client (who is, in reality, the facilitator, playing the role of a consumer), there is development and learning. This is why you should use the games as a field of practice that is secure and in which participants are able to learn and grow. There aren’t any long-term consequences for a lot, of course.
Plan to Plan
The ability to plan and execute well makes the difference in both silly games and in the actual business world. Every time we meet with our clients, they prove the efficacy of the words Dwight Eisenhower said: “In the process of preparing for battle, I have discovered that strategies aren’t necessary and planning is vital.” Games that are stupid provide us with direct access to this concept. In certain games, as in real life, you could run and shoot and be successful. But not with the silly game.
The Cube If you run towards that puppy, it will devour you and throw you into the sand.
Imagine, if you can imagine, the PVC cube stares down at the group, inviting the players to move forward and score 26 points. The Cube is vast and white and is made of sparkling PVC pipe, which is positioned on the top of a bucket resembling something out of Millennium Park. Every slight slap or push by the group members as they attempt to get through the cube will send it down to the floor. The result is that you forfeit your points, and the team must start the process over.
Groups need to plan to succeed on the Cube. Everyone should know where they will be going and what they plan to accomplish. Even if they do not follow exactly what they are supposed to do, The method of planning will help the success of the group. This is a valuable lesson to be learned. Group planning works.
That Night Shift Did It
Recently, I was working with a manufacturer who has seen record sales. They also faced production issues that were impacting their profits. There were a lot of scraps and rework. It appeared that the majority of this could result from poor communication among shifts.
We took part in the “Plank Game’, in which we had three teams that were formed by employees of the company. Each group was required to construct or put together their own set of planks. The planks for each stage were identical, but they could not be interchangeable. The challenge was, as an organization, to have the three sets of planks up within a matter of fewer than twenty minutes.
The game was a success, and one team even got completed in 14 minutes. That’s amazing. The team members immediately rose to help fellow teams. They got everything done in 18 minutes, and that was an excellent time. What the first team did not do was invite the second team to construct their own design over their own. This could have saved a lot of time.
In the post-game debriefing, following the game, we examined using the principle of sharing across groups’ and the benefits that could be gained from different manufacturing shifts becoming more interconnected and collaborative. Although everyone can see progress in this topic, it’s evident that there’s more to do. A greater degree of discipline and rigor is required. The shifts must define the best way to communicate. The production team of this company isn’t implementing this knowledge.
There aren’t any Mistakes.
One of the principles I adhere to is that everything that happens within the workplace is planned. The same is true of silly games. The way to approach it is Don’t make plans and pay the cost. Don’t pay attention or pay. Argument and fight and then spend the cost. Work together and solve problems. Move the ball. Find a solution and succeed. The Axiom of “garbage in, garbage out’ comes evident in the world of games that make no sense. If you invest time and effort in the planning and preparation of your game, you’ll see quality outcomes.