Written by Ivan Capdevila | General Director of AMFIVIA
I LOVE THIS GAME!
As a child and then as a teenager, I used to play basketball; I was also basketball trainer and I even co-founded a basketball club. It was 15 years without any free weekends, but rich in satisfaction, learning and making friendships. I loved basketball.
However, over the years, during my studies at the Faculty of Education and my professional career, I discovered that basketball and sport was not my true passion. What I really enjoyed so much was playing and most of all, being a team player.
Playing was pure pleasure. It was like sinking into a new world, based on its own rules. It implied action, effort and spontaneity in a fun environment, collaborative, complex and scented with the delicious flavour of uncertainty.
From my years at the Faculty I basically took with me the course “Management, Leisure and Amusement” and the many hours spent on the final degree project based on “Playing”. During those years at the university I learned tones of concepts that, in a surprisingly natural way, I have applied to the corporate environment.
The whole universe and significance of playing has been my most precious learning phase from my years as a student, deriving to these three sentences I have mentioned so many times in the educational environment:
- Learn by playing
- Games, when shared, are funnier
- Who is the winner? The one who had more fun!
Games’ categorisation is a fascinating topic. They can be organized depending on level of codification (simple, complex…), the role of the mentor (spontaneous, directed…), the activity (sensorial, symbolic…), the participative model (individual, team…), the dynamics (competition, opposition, cooperation, collaboration…) and the thematic (traditional, popular, sportive…) among others.
PLAYING: A FULL-TIME JOB
“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”
A team game, competitive, collaborative, that thrives on opposition and is based on complex codification could be a sport game or simply a sport. If we include the concept of “business”, these words define the role of an organisation and its teamwork. In any case, both actions:
- Require physical, cognitive and social investment
- Follow goals or are set to solve a problem
- Include rules that have to be known and accepted by everyone involved
- Require abilities, attitudes, strategy and luck
- Require interactivity
- Generate stimulations that help you gain skills that foster personal development
- Are based on the participants, who are responsible for their results and learnings
- Have an important emotional part, the key for success
- Are dynamic and evolutive: participants have to adapt themselves to the changing characteristics, rules and functions
- If played, quality relations will be created and therefore it will be easier to count on creative, pro-active, compromised and stimulated participants
When we ask ourselves why we play, we tend to answer that we play because it is fun. This is the big thing with playing: although it is a multifaceted teaching resource, its deepest secret is the simplicity and the human need to experience it.
The recreational activity is an essential concern for every person, and it is a sign of health and enjoyment. Regrettably, it has been set as antagonistic to work.
That said, and if we assume that the most of us love to have fun, to have fun in our daily job should not be a problem, but an incentive. Therefore, healthier and highly compromised teams tend to be the ones that do not contradict the fact of reaching goals with having fun. The truth is, nevertheless, that companies’ reality is every day more uncertain, complex, competitive, globalised and based on high goals and expectations.
CREATING AN HARMONIOUS ENVIRONMENT
“At heart, we scientists are lucky people: we can play every game our whole life long”
In Amfivia we have been reflecting on the basis that teams should be encouraged to reach goals in a harmonious and enjoyable environment. For now, we have conceptualized it in 6 main ideas:
Values and working patterns agreed, shared and accepted by all team members.
Colleagues able to stop focusing only on themselves to understand, accept and include all sensibilities and points of view of the rest of the team members.
The feeling of being part of competitive, congruent and transparent team.
Investment: individual contribution
Evaluate which and how many resources everyone is willing to share in order to reach team goals.
Build: to be and to do
The wish to be part of a team that develops meaningful, relevant and motivational projects
Involvement in complementary work to reach goals while enjoying the process, learnings, persons involved, the moment and the results.
This year 2018 we have decided to share with you some reflections about these ideas and concepts in a bi-monthly basis and in different formats. We want to re-think and re-define, even change and broaden them with your comments and contributions. As we already mentioned before: games, when shared, are more fun!