Technology has advanced at a rapid rate during the last twenty years. New technologies have created new ways of living with more technological possibilities than ever before. One possibility was the video game market, which has now grown to the stage where people are playing all over the world. The market for video games is continually expanding with many games now reaching similar revenues to that of top Hollywood films. The extent to which these technologies have prepared and disciplined users for the work organisation would appear at first to be very little as it would be assumed just a game. However there could be many similarities which have helped people improve organisational and management skills.
Many video games are another persons reality. The example of the football manager series, can be seen as a direct example of the presence of management and organisation in a video game. This allows users to control, direct and instruct a football team as if it were there job to do so. Football Manager is one of many simulations, others including Roller coaster Tycoon, Sim City, Medal of Honor, all being real life occupations which many people desire due to the market size for these simulation games. It is common however that these players do not choose to try and follow this career path. The video game is seen as a method of escapism into a world which is totally different to everyday life. This raises the question whether anything learnt from a video game can be applied in a persons ‘real’ job. The possibility in the mind of the person/gamer is two worlds which are separate entities which will not allow transferable skills, one being fantasy and the other a reality.
Discipline in an organisation would require an employee/employer to work hard at carrying out the relevant tasks. These tasks would be usually to built to achieve aims, goals and objectives for the organisation. These goals have been set to reach a mission statement. This situation could be likened to a video game. An example being Grand Theft Auto, the organisational goals are individual missions, the mission statement being to complete the game to 100%. The employee/employer and the gamer will work/play to achieve these overall goals and if they are reached then benefits will arise out of them. The gamer feels rewarded with a sense of achievement and so does the employee, although monetary gain is also likely in the work organisation. The skills required are focus, determination and belief to succeed towards an overall objective which is an essential skill in an organisation, providing the basis for good management skills. With both these skill needed for games and management it could be possible that video games prepare or highlight people with the necessary skills to focus on goals and objectives. This proving them to be more prepared for management in the workplace.
Everyday management in the workplace requires co-ordination and communication skills. An employer will need to delegate tasks to another employee, allowing large scale operations to be complete successfully. This is also present in video games, especially multi-player shoot-em-ups. With a headset a player can instruct teams and armies to attack/defend or other tactics to try and win the battle. This involves communicating plans effectively, under pressure, skills which are seen valuable in the work environment. However the extent to which these skills are developed when playing games could be questioned. The gamer may have already acquired them elsewhere and gaming is simply putting them into practice, which would not prepare them for the work organisation anymore than they already were.
Video games are a leisure activity which is not associated with work. The discipline of the two are very different as the worker and gamer are in very different situations. The worker could be considered as under ‘real’ pressure to complete work. The gamer however is in a relaxed environment, with little outside pressure to complete the game, even though it may be important to the individual it does not have any affects on colleagues if the game is not complete where as in work organisations it does.
Video game technologies can be recognised as requiring similar skills to that of management in work organisations, but they are very limited. The discipline and preparation to become a successful manager in a work organisation will require a lot more than decent gaming skills. I believe the two activities have no correlation between good gamer and good manager, however this remains to be proved. The video game and work organisation are two completely different situations requiring a different state of mind in each.