Ep207: On(board)gaming

26 minutes

Learning a new board game can be frustrating – it’s a lot of information to learn without any real context. And it might also reveal a lot about things in your business, like onboarding staff.

Why is that important for business? 

Just as it is with learning how to do a new job, learning a new board game can mean a lot of new information that doesn’t have a lot of contextual meaning. But what if you change how you learn a new board game – a brief summary of the rules and goals of the game, and then an open round or hand where you can talk through strategy and decisions to help everyone understand the game better, before you play “for real”? 

Or is there more value in jumping in immediately to play, and learning through the process of failure?

Some of this depends on learning styles, but the universal truth is that people can only take in so much information when they don’t have context of where to put it or why it matters. This is often revealed in the questions they ask: those questions often show how much they understand or misunderstand about the point or context. Ultimately, there are limitations to how much you can do in advance and how much you have to learn by doing. 

And even if you have the most logical, well thought out onboarding process, it is not necessarily going to be accepted. Just as people can be resistant to a way of learning a board game they are unfamiliar with, new hires can be resistant to a way of training. And the reason they don’t accept it doesn’t have to be rooted in logic. Leaders must figure out if they are more attached to things being done a certain way or adjusting the learning as needed. 

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