I have asked training and development professionals why they use training games. The answers were so numerous that it resulted in a series of articles. You can read more about that at Why do we use training games?
Here you will find arguments (original spelling) falling into the category I called:
I like games to change the rhythm of the meeting, but more importantly, to let people explore and think more deeply about concepts that have been introduced. It’s a chance to let ideas percolate a little.
To me , most games I design and use during workshops are not only active but also very deep. Few times I had participants saying things like “this is too realistic ” or “I never imagined such a simple game could be so hard”.
One time I will never forget, a lady teared up saying “why do I do thing to myself” in a game about learning to say (no). […]
Often in a training, trainers have various topics that they need to cover. A strategically designed game can help the participants derive learning on more than one aspects. The best part is that they can see the outcome of their behaviour, as that part remains same everywhere. One of my participants, in an MBA college, was confused about which area of expertise to choose for further education. A training room game gave her such insight that she was able to select her field more confidently.
Training games are a great way of creating the space for people to work with any new knowledge they have acquired in the session and apply it. People learn best when they have the chance to collaborate with others and gain their own insights rather than being told. […]
People don’t like to be taught, they prefer learning by themselves. As such, training games allow them to reveal the core learning during the subsequent debriefing. People will have stronger buy-in. […]
Through activities the trainees feel an ahha moment, the learning happened and they were not taught or lectured. This is retained much better than talk. The debriefing wraps up and reinforces the learning. Participants have to think and act so they are not passive learners. It’s winwin.
People learn by doing better than any other ways. When they play, Particpants get the sense of ownership rather than feeling guests to the training.
[…] Bad or good reactions of people when processed properly makes it easier for Individuals to arrive at their own “aha “ moment.
For me games and various exercises, simulations, role plays, etc… are a great way to create a first-hand personal experience related to the topic of the training, and the game experience then can be debriefed together with the group. I found that the depth of learning is much bigger when there is recent personal experience participants can relate to. So games are not simply for breaking the ice, but for providing a fertile soil for learning 🙂
[…] It also ensures that they are not being “fed” the outcomes, but, are self generating them after playing these games. And, as we all know, learning needs to be self driven / experienced to have the most impact and these games provide that opportunity. Also, two famous philosophers said it well:
“You can learn more about a person in one hour of play then in one year of conversations (Plato) AND, “I hear, I forget. I see, I remember. I do, I understand (Confucius)
I use training games to deliver a message that the students can identify when the game is over without having to be told the point of the game.
What do you think about this? Share your thoughts below.