How many of us gamers have heard the expression… “Stop playing those video games and get a real job!!” I guess we’ve all heard this quite a lot during our gaming careers as if we could call it that… That’s why when I found out about this, I was like.. finally!!
Studies out of the Missouri University Of Science have shown that those players that play World of Warcraft (WOW) in groups together have shown traits that easily translate into successful people in a virtual workplace. Such as the Big 5 Personality Traits…. Conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, openness, neuroticism, along with computer-mediated communication.
288 WOW players were surveyed for this study and those surveyed were from a diverse group of players, from all different ages, sex, geological location, race as well as occupation. The player’s survey answers were compared to their WOW characters statistics. By studying a players achievement points, researchers can determine the number of hours played and how much group gameplay the player has been involved in.
“What we wanted to look at was virtual teamwork and what kind of characteristics a person had in-game that would translate to real life and the workplace.” Said, Elizabeth Short, a graduate student in industrial-organizational psychology, who compiled data for the study, headed by Dr. Nathan Weidner, assistant professor of psychological science at Missouri S&T.
On average the WOW players were surveyed about 8 hours a week, while still working at least 38 hour work weeks at their normal day job. This was important to show how easy it was for these players to work in a team environment, both while gaming and in their day to day work lives. The survey itself was composed of 140 questions about, teamwork preferences, motivation, communication skills, and personality… Most of the questions were related to the Big 5, we spoke of earlier.
WOW just happens to be one of the largest and most subscribed to MMO- Role Playing game out there so it is ideal for this type of research. Short went onto to explain that the connections between the research of the gamers WOW group achievements and the player’s personality traits may have been small but proved to be very significant, statistically speaking. The biggest factor was the terms of technology readiness throughout the teams as a whole.
“The more technology ready you are, the more resilient around the technology you are, the more adaptable you are, the more achievement point you have in WOW and, you can flip that. The more achievements you have in the game, the more technically savvy you are in real life… And that’s a good thing, especially in virtual communication teams and workplaces.” Says, Short.
She went on to explain that while growing up she was a very introverted person and WOW helped bring her out of her shell, more like an armor as she put it. WOW helped her “shed that armor.” Soon, her confidence grew, and she learned to communicate better with others. Short gives all the credit to her love of WOW, she goes on to explain…
“I enjoyed playing World Of Warcraft and played it regularly. Then I started college, using the traits I had learned from WOW, like talking and communicating with people during raids, it all helped me socially in school.”
‘Raiding’ or ‘to raid’ are terms used by the gamers of WOW. The players form groups of 5, 10 or 25 people in-game and collaborate to defeat game villains using a plan. The players communicate in real-time by chat and/or using voice software.
Short and the rest of the team hope that by conducting this research more WOW players can find their own confidence and they can also convert that into their daily lives as well.
“I like the idea that there are aspects that help strengthen a person with skills, knowledge, and abilities to be able to transfer those into the workplace. If it helps students like me, I want to see if it helps people in the workplace too. This research shows us that those skills, while not exactly the same, they transfer.” She continues.
I just found this so interesting. I mean let’s face it… us gamers sometimes get a bad wrap when it comes to being hard workers. Sometimes being cast out as lazy when really most of us are the over achievers of the world.. not just in the World Of Warcraft or gaming period… but we’re the go-getter of the world and it about time it has been shown in a research study.
Thanks so much for stopping by Ky’s Korner today! Let’s catch up again next week!
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