What's changed in the new edition of The Rainforest Game?
1. The scenario in this revised edition has been changed from its original focus on collaboration at work to one that looks at the growing practice of collaboration and leadership in virtual and dispersed teams.
2. The game now includes more expansive insight into how the simulation experience aids the understanding and development of collaboration, communication, and relationship-building skills within the context of virtual teams.
3. The extensively reworked and expanded PowerPoint presentation not only provides more insight into the four-phase model for working collaboratively across boundaries, but also provides much more support for novice or inexperienced facilitators.
4. The debrief discussion now offers more activities to help deepen the learning experience and prepare learners to develop their individual action plans.
An Exploration into Virtual Leadership and Collaboration
Today's worker can be situated almost anywhere - in a satellite office, at home, or on-site in a client environment. In fact, the number of employees who claim to work remotely is four times greater today than in 1995 (Jones 2015). However, as the popularity of a dispersed workforce increases, so does the need to acquire and develop the skills necessary to navigate its unique challenges. Companies need to be equipped to cross geographical boundaries in order to share resources and ideas, to achieve success in today's global economy.
The Rainforest Game is designed to close that knowledge gap by giving individuals an opportunity to experience virtual leadership and collaboration across boundaries in an insightful, realistic hands-on simulation.
• Work more effectively across functions, geography, and distance
• Work through communication barriers
• Creatively solve complex problems
• Examine assumptions about how people and functions work together
• Apply skills for working across boundaries (Reaching Out, Sharing Information, Exploring Alternatives, and Making It Happen) all • while Building Relationships and Achieving Common Goals
Working both within groups and across groups, participants build awareness of the:
• Importance of cooperation
• Challenges inherent in inter-team communications
• Significance of creating and sustaining effective partnerships.
Your organisation has joined a worldwide consortium of environmentally sensitive organisations meeting to discuss its latest cause - the future of the rainforests. In addition, your organisation is sponsoring one of the rainforest's many endangered species. As part of this initiative, you have been asked to design a picture that can be used for marketing and fundraising materials. But you can't do it alone. This task requires you to work with other member organisations to complete the picture. Can you work across both internal and external boundaries to make a difference?
How The Rainforest Game works:
Small teams representing the member organisations of the consortium are challenged to complete a 5-foot long puzzle. Each organisation, sponsoring a specific endangered species, has pieces of the overall picture as well as their sponsored animal. But because no one team has all the pieces, they must be able to work collaboratively in order to successfully complete the task at hand.
Following the activity, participants consider their experience in the context of real-life, organisational experience and discuss the four critical skills needed to effectively work across boundaries:
• Reaching Out
• Sharing Information
• Exploring Alternatives
• Making It Happen
• Learn how to work effectively across functions, geography, and distance.
• Breakdown communication barriers.
• Creatively solve complex problems.
• Examine assumptions about how people and functions work together.
Perfect as a stand-alone learning experience or as part of a larger training initiative, The Rainforest Game is highly adaptable and flexible. The thorough Facilitator Guide offers detailed instructions, facilitator tips, design options, a wide range of discussion questions and additional activities, action planning, and more. The discussions may be focused in several areas including leadership, communication, problem solving, innovation and teamwork.
Each Rainforest Complete Game Pack includes materials for five teams of 3-5 participants working simultaneously. The kit includes:
• 1 Facilitator Guide
• Downloadable PowerPoint presentation and other digital assets (sent via email)
• 25 Participant Workbooks
• 5 puzzle sets (one per team)
• 1 set of 5 laminated instruction cards (one per team)
• 1 set of team ID sticker sheets (sufficient for up to 25 participants).
For smaller groups, it is possible to play with four teams of 3 participants. (It is also possible to run multiple games at the same time; for more participants, order the Extra Game Pack) All parts except for the Rainforest Participant Guides and stickers are reusable.