MMO Leaders: Never mess with the Capabilities of a Gamer
By Kei Beneza (dividelife), OnRPG Journalist
What does it take to lead a pack of blood thirsty Orcs in the midst of battle? Is your Racial Archon a leader in real life? It’s amazing how players can exercise leadership through MMO games. Whether it’s war, raids, or simply PVE, there will always be a player who’s calling the shots. Could it be because he is quite knowledgeable about the game, or is it because he just knows how to pull a group together? As far as IBM (a computer company) is concerned, MMOs are actually one of the best ways to prepare a leader for the real world, given a good real-time simulation of actual planning to exercise their leadership capabilities.
Are they Leaders in Real Life?
Not in most cases! What’s amazing about this concept is that it’s very easy to distinguish which individual is capable of leading, even at an early age. After interviewing some Guild Leaders and Raid Leaders in the real world, I was actually surprised as these individuals were not as I thought they would be after meeting their Online Personas. Believe it or not, most of the leaders in the MMO world are NEETs (Not in Education, Training, or Employment) and underpaid employees. Some of them even have low self-esteem, which hinders them from achieving further goal.
OnRPG: Do you have the capacity to lead?
Guild Leader: Not at all…
OnRPG: But you’ve done a very good job, I mean, you HAVE led your race to victory for more than a year now.
Guild Leader: It’s not like it’s the same as in real life. I only became the Leader because they said I knew the game more.
As you can see, some of them are even unaware of their inborn talents. To some of them, the game is merely a way to become someone else, namely their exact opposite. But what if there’s more to them that meets-the-eye? What if the role of being the Epic Hero can also be applied in real life?
IBM says MMO Leaders make great Leaders in Real Life
Believe it or not, MMOs can be the best training program for future leaders, as well as a spawning pit for new ones. Some are not even aware that they’re already executing high caliber leadership skills on the field. Aside from the ability to communicate flawlessly and open-mindedly, the MMO world presents players with the necessary skills to fulfill requirements that are rare for individuals to posses in the real world. Although a game is JUST a game to some, practical things like marketing strategies and mock economies can also be found in the field and can help train players in various ways. It also allows players to gain experience in dealing with certain situations like: risk taking, group collaboration, communication problems, functioning under pressure, and of course, the ability to express one’s self further.
Putting pressure on the leaders
What Players are Probably Not Aware Of
Though some adults think you’re probably better off enrolling in a training program, IBM says that MMOs and the business world have various similarities in terms of the challenges presented. The MMO world is indeed a living and breathing world, so the decision of one can have an all-out effect on the virtual planes. What follows are a couple of requirements in the business world that are harnessed subconsciously when playing MMOs:
– Incentive structures that motivate workers immediately and longer term
– Virtual economies that create a marketplace for information and collaboration
– Transparency of performance and capabilities
– Recognition for achievements
– Visibility into networks of communication across an organization
This isn’t really an excuse for you play MMOs all day, but at least you can tell your parents that you’re getting somewhere (somehow) LOL.
The True Capability of Gamers
Jim Spohrer, IBM’s Director of Servives Research, say that success in the business world can also depend on the capabilities of the gamer. He also stated that Smart Organizations are recognizing various employees who exercise their MMO Leadership skills in real life. Many of the traits presented by almost every MMO out there can be associated with the business world. According to them, it’s a gold mine of leaders, and the only thing left to do is to collect your mercenary ;). I guess you can call it “learning, the fun way”. What we call normal in the fantasy world is actually quite astounding in real life. Know your capabilities, and harness them.
Ingame group activity
Aside from Leaders, the MMO plane can also subordinates in a way, as it presents challenges that force players to bend down and experience more things. Situations like “WE NEED A HEALER” among a group of players can also encourage players to try new things, namely, creating a healer class character, or just simply trying them out. MMOS demand teamwork and a lot of it. Leading in MMOs also encourages people to take responsibility and learn from their mistakes, whether it’s boss fights where you wipe continuously, or simply strategizing in PVP. I suppose you’ll be surprised at how much you’ve LEVELED UP in real life since you started playing.
To some, it’s just a game, but tell that to IBM. Quite surreal isn’t it? It’s like the whole idea of big companies hiring people who specialize at gaming is just a dream, but think again. MMOs give you more skills than just the average skill-tree you’ve sought to level up. Leaders are all around us, and some are not even aware of how well they can do in real life, let alone the skills they are subconsciously projecting. Know that there’s more in stored for you, and the hardest quest in the game may only be the beginning of what you’re about to face in real life. If your mom tells you to stop playing, just tell her that you’re training for the future J. Think about it… if ever monsters somehow overran the world, you might be the first one employed XD.