Magic Happens When You Think You Can - FocusU

Magic Happens When You Think You Can

“The chief enemy of creativity is good sense.” – Pablo Picasso 

Sometimes we come across a challenge in life that initially seems impossible to solve. A challenge that challenges one’s perceived limits and capability, often ends up changing our perception of possibility. 

Our team received a challenge of that quantum few months back. A leading IT Giant asked us to gamify their complete process of sales training. This was a massive task as the content seemed endless. The only silver lining, if I may say so, was that it was given to us in the form of checklists. This would help in structuring the games later on in the process. Each checklist ran a few pages long and there were 21 of them. The challenge was to convert all the data explained in the checklists into a digital game that could be played on a tab. In addition, the final game/activity was expected to last but 3-4 hours. 

Customising and manipulating data to integrate them into digital games is nothing new for us. With the host of digital offerings in our arsenal, we are normally very comfortable in our skin when it comes to such client requirements. However, earlier our team had customised but a few digital activities as per the client’s requirements and this was completely different. This was this was our maiden voyage into the turbulent sea of phygital (Physical + Digital) offerings at such a large scale.


Say Yes! and then figure it out

“If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later! – Richard Branson

When we first received this challenge, many of us in the team were not sure on how to complete this or even where to begin. However, we were sure of two things –
a) We have the talent to understand gamification
b) Our team is passionate enough to turn around any complex project.

And so, we said Yes! and picked the project. Our team worked hard to create the first sample checklist game and got an approval from the client. And that’s how our journey into the unknown began.

Break it into pieces

A challenge of this size needed time to execute and a meticulous planning. As with most critical projects, time was a major challenge here. Client needed the best result in a limited time frame. This made everything more challenging.
However, as the saying goes –
“How do you eat an elephant?
– piece by piece!”
We just broke the larger task into executable small projects and assigned timelines to each of them. And, suddenly the giant no longer seemed invincible!

Build a team that believes

The most important ingredient required to pull off a complex project of this size and nature, is the team. The team has to be very carefully selected. Ours was a team that is deeply passionate and die-hard optimists. This project needed time, which was limited. It meant that all team members had to slog overtime for many hours every day to make it happen. We needed people who could not just ideate, create, but also seamlessly execute the same. And guess what? We were the perfect bunch of mavericks. There were many challenges and setbacks along the way. There was continuous back and forth with the client on the questions prepared and other logistics. There were times when the client completely rejected our designs. And yet, in the midst of all this chaos, the one thing that remained constant was the faith we had in our own ability to deliver the project successfully in time.

Prepare for the D-Day

FocusU has been lucky enough to be exposed to situations that call us to buckle up and take on challenges that sound impossible until they are done. Ranging from 500 to 2500 participants, we have successfully managed to deliver a memorable workshop for our clients, every time. This workshop was for 700 participants, but the catch was that they were not all involved in the same activity. There were multiple checklist/games that were to be played at the same time in different zones in the same venue.

This needed a lot of co-ordination with both, event partner and the client. One wrong move and chaos would have ensued. Thus, our preparation needed to be air tight. Our team gave their 100% and more, almost as if the judgement day was upon us. There were a host of test and dry runs held which gave us the confidence needed for the final execution. And, in the end, all our hard work paid off – The final experience for the participants was pure magic!

“All’s well that ends well”

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