Immerse yourself in team building games

The new rage in team building seems to be "immersion games." Immersion games come in many variants, but all share the common element that the participants take on roles and interact with each other (and perhaps actors or vendor-supplied participants) as if they are in some other imagined environment - a spy game, an Olympic competition, a military exercise, or the like.

Immersion games are not new, but they are newly popular as companies and social groups search for new types of bonding experiences outside of the usual dinner party, bowling competition or even scavenger hunt game. They allow individuals to stretch their imaginations and leave their comfort zone with the safety net of knowledge that the experience is "just a game."

The pluses of immersion games are:

  • They're way fun.
  • They offer a unique experience that few if any team members have had.
  • They open up channels of thinking and behaving that most of us have not had much opportunity to explore since childhood.
  • They allow individuals to explore new capabilities for themselves not possible in the workplace or most other games. For example, the most junior team member might find herself as Chief Spy; Mr Goody-Two-Shoes can play the evil villain. This type of role-stretching enables team members to envision themselves in leadership or cooperative roles that might not otherwise open up to them in the workplace.
  • They celebrate abilities not otherwise recognized in the office, but which can have real-world value. For example, the secret Sudoku nut's ability to recognize patterns might become extremely valuable in a spy game.

Interested in trying one? Run Brain Run's Alias and Alibi game allows you to immerse yourself into a spy vs. spy scenario in a fast-paced rush to solve riddles and save the planet (or, at least, your city) from impending doom. We're betting you haven't done that in the office lately.

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