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Pr-AcordoIn Pre-Deal, the player pretends that all the issues will be discussed in a meeting with persons x , y , and z , but in the meantime makes a pre-deal with a power broker in the organization, and the whole thing is a fait accompli. This is a classic meeting game, one that gives meetings a bad name.People spend hours and hours meeting, but it’s all just for show, because one person has an informal agreement with a key decision maker in the organization, and the other people in the meeting are in the dark about this deal.
Example: Margie had what she thought was a terrific way for her group to reduce costs, but she knew that if she presented it during the monthly meeting of the company’s financial group, it would engender endless debate and would take a long time for everyone to reach consensus. For this reason, Margie approached the CFO prior to the meeting and explained her cost reduction plan. The CFO liked the idea, and he agreed with Margie that if she were to present it during the next scheduled meeting, it could take weeks or even months before all the objections to it could be addressed. Therefore, the CFO asked Margie not to present the idea during the meeting; they would simply talk about the usual cost-cutting options. After the meeting, the CFO would announce that he had come up with a cost-cutting solution and that Margie would be in charge of implementing it.

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Games of the Month

Token Involvement

To play Token Involvement, a manager conducts opinion surveys, focus group, or involvement meetings to communicate that "your opinion matters", but these activities are done only to make people feel involved rather than actually to involve them. The real intention is just to get rid of the complaints and for managers to show their management that they´re doing the "right" thing-involving their people in the decision-making process. The same game is played when leaders involve their direct reports supercially, soliciting their views on department strategy but relying exclusively on their views on department strategy but relying exclusively on thei own view. Cynicism becomes employees´ultimate response to this game, and they lose respect for management. Perhaps evens worse, when management really needs employees to be committed and contribuing to a major project, they have great difficulty securing this involvement.


Praise for Games at Work

jacopoA terrific read not only for senior leaders and executives but also for employees seeking growth in complex organizations. Goldstein and Read dissect the interpersonal dynamics that affect a company’s performance, provide a framework to understand the games that are commonly played in businesses around the world, and offer practical tools to correct these behaviors and improve the organization’s effectiveness.

Jacopo Bracco Executive Vice President DIRECTV Latin America

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