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Study Finds MMO Players Make Great Leaders

by Chris Faylor, Jun 29, 2007 12:08pm PDT
Related Topics – MMO, Study

It looks like MMORPG experience points may have some real-world implications after all. A new report from IBM and software developer Seriosity suggests that many of the traits displayed by dedicated MMORPG players are key to successful leadership in business. Specifically, the report, which can be read in its entirety at Seriosity's official site, claims that MMORPG players exhibit proficiency in, "collaboration, self-organization, risk taking, openness, influence, how to earn incentives linked to performance and be flexible in the way they communicate." "The research proves that online games have valuable lessons for success in business," said Seriosity CEO Ken Ross. IBM and Seriosity go so far as to suggest that businesses adopt some of the MMORPG aspects they believe encourage such behavior, including incentive structures and achievement recognition to motivate workers, virtual economies to promote information sharing and collaboration, and an overall view of the communication structure within an organization. Several of those principles went into Seriosity's "enterprise productivity application" Attent, which aims to help workers streamline their day-to-day tasks and avoid overload by prioritizing activities. "What we've found is that success as a business leader may depend on skills as a gamer," explained IBM director of services research Jim Spohrer. "Smart organizations are recognizing valued employees who play online games and apply their skills and experiences as virtual leader to their 'real world' jobs."




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  • I think it's wrong to say "MMO players in general would make good business leaders".

    But take, let's say, a WoW guild leader. They have to manage/plan/motivate for 40+ people through voice chat or text. A good guild leader can make all the difference in the success of raid and of learning new content.

    I was in a pretty good guild about a year ago, we would get US 1st or 2nd kills on a lot of the new content (post MC + onyxia), and our guild leader was, well, a good leader. He was on top of what was going on constantly, making tough decisions (should person A or B get the loot? should i kick this guy out of the guild for being bad?), motivating us and making sure we were doing our "jobs" correctly.

    I know it's just a game and usually only 40 people in a raid, but the skills are still there.