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By Mark Young Rational Games, Inc.

This month, please allow the team at Rational Games to share in their marking the occasion of our 20th anniversary (founded in 2001) this weekend, where our trainers, Board, and honored guests gathered for four days at the Spitzingsee in Bavaria to celebrate.

This was a wonderful “bonding” experience.  With the idyllic setting of the Bavarian Alps as a backdrop, we strategized, co-created, and transferred knowledge – while also mountain biking (somehow ending up at the top of a chair lift by mistake), hiking (to the summit), with the help of a helpful truck here and there, even stand-up paddling on the lake in cooperation and competition with each other.  And of course, in the evenings we enjoyed some gemütlich time together over beer and wine – even whiskey on the final evening for the Board. And all of it live and in real-time, no Zoom mute buttons!

We are very proud of what we have created together over the last 20 years.  To track the three pillars of our organization:

Negotiation:  In intensive workshops, we focused on our Why, What, and How:

Why do we exist and how do we better project our message of using games and play to resolve conflict, also in the nonprofit world?

What are our products and services going forward, to which target markets, how do we include blended learning, as well as emerging topics such as emotion in negotiation, digital negotiation, and the effects of gender?

How can we operate more efficiently, with less email and more smart technology, with lean and flexible structures for innovation, operating seamlessly across time zones from Calgary to Beirut?

Gamification:  We are always seeking new levels of playfulness, and developing new games and exercises to keep us on the cutting edge of play.  The intersection of negotiation pedagogy with improvisational theater is a particular area of interest – and so we played with ideas around that.

Philanthropy:  This is the “Why” of Rational Games – the source of our passion.  We continue to actively seek creative projects that make innovative use of games and play to resolve conflict – whether in sports or the arts,  established or emerging, in locations all over the world.  The absolute highlight of the weekend was the announcement of a special Trainer Award, funded by the trainers themselves, to the tune of EUR 1600, to be awarded to one of our current grantees.  Stay tuned for news on that.

Happy Birthday, RGI, and many more!


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