Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Prepping a Game Session for our Sales Team

Ok, I tend to blend work and games to a fault. So much that I've become rather an alien kind of gamer in the game-o-sphere. I've thrown out rules that don't mix well with what I've observed in my work experience and continue to embed "rules of thumb" at work in so much of my gaming and my studies that it is this whole confusing and unattractive mess.

So it is only natural that my Spreadsheets and Spaceships is actually more useful applied to our sales team than to find players for such an experience. I don't know what word can best describe the situation where my GMing is tailoring more to social situation simulation and strategic biz management that I've alienated players and begun to be more accommodating to people in our company?

One of my favorite GMs is a professional lawyer who followed the Old School path, the kind of gaming where more of the problem solving came from the players than the characters. That characters and stats held less and less meaning and the players were able to push the limits of what would be a "mundane" character.

There was that narrowing focus on problem solving ability, resourcefulness, multi-tasking and attention to detail that made the game overly complex and strangely unattractive because expectations were changing and not symmetrically and at the same direction. That widening gap was a problem because as we all got older much of us changed and so did our priorities.

Now it seems I'm slowly going full circle. The game has helped me so much in work, I have several projects all lined up both in this blog and at work: ambitious, experimental and seeking criticism to ground expectations and assumptions. Now it appears that really, my games may be only suited to people at work and maybe that is the direction I should focus if I want to get my gaming fix.

Moving forward, I really have to change how I see what could be my potential players. I think the sooner I move toward Case Studies and Scenarios, and find a way to inject my desire for humanistic narrative, empathy, economics, tactics and strategy and love for problem seeking and solving in those sessions the sooner I can build on that and learn to accept the limitations of my circumstance and probably learn to love it.

Looking at it this way... at least I don't need a battle map and tokens anymore. All the news and speculation regarding competitors, other industry, and much of the forensic accounting analysis regarding their operating conditions can be transformed into NPC organizations with the potential to be partners, suppliers, clients and competitors. All the tricks in gathering information, and skillfully asking questions and trying to tease out clues will be what these games and scenarios are going to be about.

Probably end up using GURPS Social Engineering, GURPS mysteries, together with the Sales Certification and Training techniques and develop a method of discrete analysis and questioning playbook for the sales and key managers. Of course I'm eliminating a lot of the rules that don't really apply and use it a framework to build a foundation. I wonder if I could insert mastery of biases or fallacies in the skillset, and exercise framing techniques? Its like building a Social Simulation Game system... but the GM has some sales and dealing experience.

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