Does Motivation Through Penalty Really Work?

As you think over your life, which has motivated you the most:  the promise of a reward or the threat of a penalty?    This is a question I’ve been pondering a lot of late.  Let’s say, for example, I set a goal for myself of exercising at least five times…

Boardgames for Business

Long before Facebook, Instagram and Angry Birds, in an age long past (or so it seems), families spent hours together huddled around the kitchen table, enjoying spirited games of Monopoly, Sorry, the Game of Life, and Risk.    A welcome break from television — the chief electronic entertainment of the era…

Change: It’s Such A Pain!

Why do people change?  It’s a simple question, with a plethora of possible answers, such as: People change because it’s good for them… They change because they’re forced to… They change because it’s just time…  They change for the sake of variety… Change is a part of life, right?  It’s…

How Not To Be Alone

(Editor’s note:   I found this in the Times a few days ago and was very impressed–and moved.   Please see my comments afterwards. DB) By JONATHAN SAFRAN FOER (reprinted from the NY Times, June 8, 2013) A COUPLE of weeks ago, I saw a stranger crying in public. I was in…

Lessons from Collaborative Games

What exactly is a “game”?  A quick search on Wikipedia delivers this definition: game /g?m/ Noun “A form of play or sport, esp. a competitive one played according to rules and decided by skill, strength, or luck.” Although I agree that games must necessarily have rules (and structure), what strikes…

Increase Performance of Your Virtual Teams

Are you tired of the same old dry, serious, virtual meetings? As organizations continue to globalize and departments become more and more geographically dispersed, teams are increasingly turning to cyberspace to complete important projects and to get work done.   With opportunities to gather together  “in person” becoming fewer and farther…

Should Games be More (or Less) Competitive

There’s a popular social movement in schools these days, compelling teachers and coaches to minimize competition on the playground while increasing collaboration.  It’s gone so far that one school I heard about even removed the scoreboard from their high school football field, insisting that keeping score put too much pressure…

The Wave

A few days ago, I watched a fascinating movie from 2008 — “The Wave” — available widely on DVD, Netflix, etc.  Although the film takes place in Germany (with an all-German cast), it’s actually a dramatization of the true story of an unusual teaching experiment conducted by Ron Jones at…

What is the value of team building?

When I’ve asked this question to clients, they’ve responded with a broad variety of answers, such as: –Team building helps people bond –It raises morale –It lets us blow off steam –It allows folks to get to know people with whom they may not work on a regular basis –It…