Covid Remote Work

When the pandemic happened in 2020, much of the world shifted to remote work. Suddenly teams had to figure out how to measure productivity remotely; how to not talk over each other when trying to discuss and coordinate things; how to handle stressful 'fire fighting' situations remotely, as a group and all in the same virtual space together; how to lead a group that you cannot physically see; how to correct behavior remotely; how to train new personnel remotely; how to improve efficiency and drive success with remote team members etc...

You could replace 'remote working' with 'raiding in an online game' and all of those same challenges would apply. Said another way, online gaming prepared millions of people for this exact scenario years ago. Staring with Everquest raids, as painful as those could be, gamers began to learn those skillsets. They began to learn how to work as a team when you can't see body language or facial queues. They figured out how to have remote measurement of success (or failure) and how to adapt, train, improve and retackle the problem as a team. They built measurement systems, training systems and communications systems to overcome complex problems. And every problem was a 'fire fighting' situation where failure could cost hours of time and a great many people upset with you. Ironically, online gaming was the tool that created the baseline for successful remote teams years before it was fashionable to be a gamer and long before anyone thought a pandemic could happen in their lifetime.

Employers who had teams that contained members with strong gaming backgrounds often fared better as the settled into the new normal, pre-vaccine, especially if those teams were led by a gamer. That person already paid their dues and made their mistakes, outside the workplace, to build the skills needed to lead effectively in a remote work environment.

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