Learning through games

Last week I was a student in Tobias Mayer’s Welfare CSM course. What a great experience!  Almost all of the learning came via interactive games. I loved this, reminded me of Agile Open California in some ways – like no powerpoint, no sitting in rows of chairs facing the speaker… Even though Tobias clearly is a scrum expert, he set up the class so that much of our learning came from experiences like the spaghetti game, the three things game, an unpredictable variation of the ball game, a collaboration improv game, and more.

And we walked away with some new friends. Remembering everyone else’s name … valuing people over process a bit. Turns out that when we are being “me” centered, we just want to explain and tell.  Interestingly, Creativity happens when we are curious, when we are curious about others then we move into a mode of exploring with the other person. Exploration is central to creativity.

In another game we saw that failing fast led to many more ideas and success than too much talk and indecision. I don’t particularly like failing – so this was not a particularly attractive concept. On the other hand, I do have a huge bias for action, so then again this is looking like a winning strategy after all!

The biggest lesson was that scrum is an evolving framework…that as we practice we will iterate our own thinking about what works, and why. Scrum is not something we learn just once… It is a form of continuous improvement … we get to “done” on our sprint stories, but we are never “done” with our learning.


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4 Responses to “Learning through games”

  1. Kevin E. Schlabach Says:

    Then you should check out one of my favorite sites I use for coaching! Games for Agile learning-


  2. Geoff Wing Says:

    There’s a powerful subtlety in Tobias’ methods. I didn’t even think of the strong sense of “we” he created until you mentioned it.

    The first exercises around name memorization and finding commonalities seemed fun but inconsequential. But now I reflect on them and discover that for the first time ever I remembered the names of all 18 people immediately and spent the rest of the 2 days trying to discover the persons behind them. The exercises spurred me to do this.

  3. Phil Ruse Says:

    I know very little about scrum, but the “value people over process” bit makes me want to learn – and I was beginning to think I was beyond help!

  4. Drive – thoughts on Daniel Pink’s new book « Agile Dreamer Says:

    […] Agile Dreamer ideas about change « Learning through games […]

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