Does your boss allow the words “fun” and “games” into the corporate lingo? Here at the Go Game, we’re aware of the misconceptions America associates with “fun.” It’s easy to assume games are for children, and “fun” is a waste of time.
Yet, many psychologists, gamers, and journalists come to battle everyday to defend the merits of immersing in work and play together. They argue we NEED fun.
Jane Mcgonigal, author of New York Times Bestseller Reality Is Broken, says games can be brought into the real world and used to better our lives. You may also know her as motivational TED Talk speaker, or ingenious blogger. According to McGonigal, by playing games, we increase our willpower, happiness, and determination. She mentions during her TED talk that Brigham Young University ran a study revealing parents who played videogames with their children had better relationships with their kids. The GoGame agrees! Did I mention she’s a lovely former employee?
An additional study was conducted by BYU showing girls between the ages of 11 to 16 behaved better when they played video games with their parents. Surprisingly enough, the girls also acted kinder and less aggressive towards their peers than their counterparts.
The importance of fun and play is vastly underestimated. Look beyond childhood. Katherine Karl and Joy Peluchette concluded from their joint research that employees who experienced more fun at work were also more satisfied. Furthermore, the happy employees had a greater connection and higher opinion of the organization. They were more confident, responsive, and reliable in their work environment. Talk to any of our Go Game employees and you’ll see it’s true.
Fun is serious business! Games represent more than a form of leisure time. They reward and motivate us. Ever used Yahoo Answers to ask a question? Have you read someone else’s questions, because you had similar ones? With a few quick, easy searches, anyone can have the world’s knowledge at their fingertips. Yes, it sounds too good to be true, but technology and social media are the future! YahooAnswers connects the community, circulating information, questions, and answers from all across the globe. It’s almost like a game. There’s even a reward system to encourage users. Asking and answering questions gain points. Best answers receive even greater reward. All for what? To receive a higher ranking or “level.” It’s as simple as that. Yet it hooks people; it draws them in.
From our sugar-filled childhood cereals to media or the web, you’ll find hints of games, fun, and trivial goals whirling around us. Look at forum sites, which rank their members by post activity and other stats. Or Weight-loss programs, which focus on tracking your progress and taking on a clear goal. Ever seen the Special-K Challenge weight loss program? Who said children are the only ones who need games?
Having clear, specific, and obtainable goals are key for better learners, workers, and gamers of all ages. Happiness impassions us to work towards our goals. Input “fun” and “play” into our work environments and surprisingly the output will be passion, hard work, and productivity.
Check out Dr. Stuart Brown’s TED Talk. He thinks so too!
Fun has been overlooked, and the Go Game is here to tell YOU to watch out. “Fun” is our future.
Blog post written by Go Game Intern Ian Sherman