This week we saw the teams compete to design a new video game concept to pitch to industry professionals. Team Infinity developed a game that featured “a strong female lead” escaping from prison, and Team Diverse attempted to create a game with a serious message about climate change.
Brittany took on the role of Project Manager for Diverse and Akeem led the Infinity team. Now we’re down to only 11 candidates there are fewer places to hide and its only Stephanie and Kathryn haven’t Project Managed yet. Still tricky to predict the winner though.
Let’s round up on this week’s learnings
- Make ideas visible during a brainstorm
Watching the teams brainstorm their concepts at the design agency was frustrating. Each individual jotted down their thoughts in their own notebook, ignoring the materials that had been provided for them. Making ideas visible to everyone in the team allows team members to build on each other’s inputs, enables people to make connections between ideas more easily, ensures good suggestions don’t get forgotten and supports consensus building. Perhaps having visibility of “the spelling mistake” would have made it easier to spot? When the teams began to work on designing the ‘worlds’ of their games it was great to see them utilising the white boards at last. However they did select the colours that are most difficult to read – blue and black (and a combination of colours) are preferrable to green and orange.
- Own up to your errors
Team Diverse called their game ‘Artic Saviour’ – missing the C out of Arctic, (and also mistakenly including penguins among the animals that Sam the Scientist was trying to save). Once this mistake had become evident the group debated whether to bring it up in the pitch and for an awful moment it looked as though they were going to try to blag it (“we could say that Artic is how a lot of people are spelling it now”). They admitted the error when it was pointed out by an investor, but being proactive about it could have saved the investor the embarrassment of having to do so. Owning the mistake and highlighting its value as a learning opportunity could have saved Francesca.
- Success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan
Although they won the task, Infinity dropped plenty of clangers. They were just lucky that Diverse dropped more clangers, and from a greater height. Said Aaron (of the winning team) after their clunky pitch had been delivered, “if it was to boil down to somebody, it’s certainly not me who’s responsible for the task”. Yet he then went on to claim lots of credit for developing the game’s trailer. He was not alone in claiming credit for the win. “I came up with a lot of the key ideas…so I felt I was instrumental in the winning of this task” pronounced Harpreet. “My experience really shone through, and that’s why we won the task” said Akeem. Meanwhile Brittany’s losing team argued over whether their incorrectly spelt game name or uninspiring concept was the reason for their failure. Yes of course it is a competition, but taking personal credit for success – or trying to place the blame for failure on others – breeds resentment, and teams full of resentful people can never win.
Management Speak of the Week
“I need to trust my gut” – Akeem. All very well, but he shifted position more times than Karren Brady’s eyebrows during this week’s episode.
Ones to Watch?
We all need to be on the lookout for Steve the Scientist. He should be easily identifiable in his lab coat, Ugg boots and goggles. This man will kill any human being he encounters in his quest to save the animals of the frozen tundra. Be warned.
In episode six the teams will go to Wales to act as tour guides. It should be a Rhyl thrill, but which candidate will be looking back in Bangor?