My blog has moved! Redirecting...

You should be automatically redirected. If not, visit and update your bookmarks.

Friday, May 30, 2008

ComputerWorld Article on Leadership and WoW

I was recently reading a ComputerWorld interview of Byron Reeves, Revenge of the gamers: World of Warcraft is honing tomorrow's leaders. Reeves is the Paul C. Edwards Professor of Communication at Stanford University and a co-founder of Seriosity Inc. The article points to these reasons why business leaders should be playing online games:

I've made similar observations, both as an occasional World of Warcraft player and as a parent of child who plays Runescape Now, I have to admit that when I play World of Warcraft I tend to go it alone as much as possible. I enjoy exploring the worlds, fighting the beasties, piling up loot, and increasing my skill level. I have also joined others on quests, helped those in need, etc.

My son, on the other hand, takes his Runescape playing to another level. He and his classmates often ban together to defeat other clans, build businesses, plunder, and share loot. They also pull pranks on each other and share their accounts to help each other gain the highest level possible. To boast of their conquests and brag on their bank accounts, they post YouTube videos.

As I've talked to my son about what he's learned from Runescape, I can see that, among other things, he's learned how to form teams to complete a common goal, how simple economies work, how to run a small business, and how to deal with risk. He and his friends are learning these skills in an environment where they can safely fail. He's also finding out that there are real economies attached to these MMORPGs; companies and individuals making real money by selling virtual items.

I agree with Mr. Reeves regarding the merits of online games and leadership development. There are plenty of essons in these virtual worlds. From the video game created with the help of Ben Duskin, a boy who had leukemia and used his Make a Wish wish to help other children with cancer, to Byron Reeves company, Seriosity, Inc. that has borrowed some of the concepts of online gaming to approach email productivity, there's no doubt that online (and video) games are having an impact our society.

Technorati search