ATD TechKnowledge: Can you say Games?

Posted by Amy Bybee on January 21, 2016
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BlogPhotoTechKnowledge.jpgLast week I was excited to attend the learning and development tech conference of the year, ATD TechKnowledge 2016.

If you are in L&D, then you know technology is disruptive—these powerful advances that are transforming life, business, and the global economy. You also know that technology isn’t going anywhere. In a world where mobile devices outnumber people, technology continues to change business and employee development in major ways. As we continue to place Millennials into leadership roles, a group that came into the workforce technologically-savvy, we must be prepared for them to continue the technology trend as they prepare the next generation of leaders.

At the end of the three day event (which for me consisted of over 18 sessions and a detail-oriented promenade of the expo floor) I can tell you one thing: GAMES, GAMES, GAMES! That’s right! The use of games for learning and development is here to stay. That reality rang true—loud  and clear—at this conference.

Here are some of the big takeaways:

  1. GAMES WHY? Games solve training needs in a big way. They engage an ever immersed workforce. They make learning a blast, rather than a requirement. They provide amazing discussion opportunities that yield on-the-job results and benefits. Forget ROI…how about ROE (return on engagement)!
  2. GAMES WHAT? Not all games are created equal. Games are not badges, trophies, and leader boards. Effective games have continuous challenges. They immerse participants into a storyline. They have the flexibility of attaining goals with multiple outcomes. Great games create competition…while disguising powerful learning behind great fun.
  3. GAMES WHERE? Where does a game fit into your L&D content? As long as the game is beneficial to your employees and built around learning objectives, then games can be used anywhere…for anything. So never miss the opportunity to plug a game into a curriculum, especially a topic that seems difficult or is highly resisted (such as financial literacy).

We could go on and on. The bottom line is, whether it is a board game with a blended learning approach or a fully online game, L&D games are here to stay. They may be offering up some of the best ROE than any other offering in your curriculum.

To learn more about infusing games into your L&D offerings, download our whitepaper.

Topics: Business Simulations, Experiential Learning, Learning Development, Technology, Human Resources, Employee Engagement