Thursday, December 6, 2012

Identity and Leadership Development Training

Identity is key when planning leadership development training using simulation, the participant in the simulation has to be able to assume identify for training to be effective. There are varying degrees in which people can be immersed in the identity or role of a leader in training. Any training scenario where the participants can role play is the most effective and gives the participant an “Experience” they can later reflect on and draw from, applying lessons learned to future scenarios. The simulation should not be canned, where a menu of choices is offered to the participant. In what leadership role do leaders select courses of action from a menu of choices? Real living, breathing, thinking leaders don’t. They consider different courses of action, solicit input, and come up with their own choices. 

A model for simulation is video games. Take World of Warcraft for example. It is a role playing game where participants are given quests to accomplish. The environment is complex and dynamic. To accomplish the mission and be successful in the quest, participants have to be able to think critically, plan and evaluate multiple course of action, make a decision, and execute. These are all things leaders in real life are required to do on daily basis. But how is training designed to replicate that?

 There is even a wiki dedicated to successful practices and lessons learned. So participants can learn from others. To learn more about simulation, identity, and video games here are a couple of good books I recommend that I keep on my shelf here.

1 comment:

  1. At the Danish Army Academy we use the computer game Steel Beasts to simulate manoeuvre warfare from platoon up to battalion level. I taught small unit tactics at the academy from 2010 to 2011.

    The first few times the cadets try the game they are very focused on their own performance disregarding the team's. The result might be obvious: the unit is defeated.
    Once the leaders on different levels start to lead the outcome changes.

    The cadets will learn the importance of fire & manoeuvre, the importance of collaboration and the importance of leadership focusing on the unit's objective.