Video game training – Is this the future?

Over the last few months I've seen evidence of more and more businesses utilising video games as a form of business training. This was most recently confirmed for me in the article Game Theory, which cites statistics that 70% of major American employers currently use interactive software and games for workplace training purposes.

So are video games the future of professional development training? How seriously should businesses consider implementing them?

To us at Fortune, video game training has its benefits. And those are especially pronounced when comparing it to education and lecture-based learning, as the article does. The interactive nature of video games alone, regardless of the additional benefits of cost efficiency and ability to customise, will make it more effective than a lecture. As Ben Franklin famously said, "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I may remember. Involve me and I learn."

But while video games may involve you, they won't involve you as much as an effective facilitator will. So by extension, you won't learn as much with video games as you will with a good facilitator. And that's because an effective facilitator will not only customise content to a job, an 'environment' or a set of skills, but by creating a whole persona through effective questions and strategies, they can customise content to each and every participant. We each have different behaviour styles and learn differently, so this is a crucial additional element that ensures key information isn't just received but is also personalised, thus increasing the likelihood that the training program will positively change behaviour.

The bottom line: If you're looking to educate your employees, then you should absolutely consider video games as an alternative. But if you're looking to train your employees, so that you can enact positive and ongoing change, then it would be hard to recommend video games over the personalisation and teamwork that comes via facilitator-led training.

Posted: 9/06/2010 12:38:00 AM by Andy Klein | with 0 comments
Filed under: business, facilitator, interactive, leadership, online, sales, training
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