Agile Politics - (re)discover the politician in you
- articles on politics
Emmanuel Gaillot (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Willem van den Ende (email@example.com)
120 minutes (note: we may shorten the workshop to no less than 90 minutes. 90 minutes is an option, but it leaves participants frustrated based on our experience)
Simulation / Game
We believe this session would fit well in the "Practitioners' advances in the art" track. It needs at least 5 participants and scales up well up to 50.
If you believe corporate politics is something for 'those dirty managers' think again. Everybody behaves in a political way when a limited amount of resources has to be divided over groups of people. Come play our game and experience firsthand how dirty a politician you are!
We will play politics - in a game you will represent a political faction that tries to get an organisation to spend money the way you prefer. Convince others to vote for you so you can carry out your program, or choose another party to do what you want for you... After playing the game we will debrief our experiences and draw parallels with everyday work. It may be that you are already aware of the politics around you. In that case the game can help you understand more about your behaviour. It may be that you believe your work has nothing to do with politics. Think again... it may be that you are a "spoiltician" ;) - someone who has "delegated" that dirty politics to others (e.g. your boss ;). This game will show you how political many common project decisions are. Whether you care about corporate politics or not, they have an impact on your worklife. Regardless your status, be it an opinion leader, a reckless reformer or "just a programmer" in the silent crowd, this workshop is for you!
- Learn when politics happen
- Get a better grasp at why politics happen the way they happen
- Experience your own behaviour and that of others - it is the situation that is politically charged more than you
- Try out various political strategies and safely observe their possible outcomes
- Have fun!
- Find more here write my essay
Short introduction to the game (We will not explain all the rules in detail, so that we can get started quickly. The rules will be on display for those interested. The Game Overall Director will apply the rules ruthlessly nevertheless ;) ). We'll play the game "Candidate," as described in Michael Laver's _Playing Politics: The Nightmare Continues._ One or more participants form a party that is part of an Agile Consortium. The consortium has money to spend on academic research, The Conference, business members, and education & certification. Each party has a certain (undisclosed to others) preference for spending on some topics. We play multiple rounds, in each round two candidates get to present their program, the voters get to influence the candidates, their program or what happens after the election. The party that has represented their interests the best, either by winning elections or just shrewdly voting (by getting most subsidies for their interests) wins.
Timetable (minutes duration):
- 15 - introduction and party formation (if there are more than 7 participants multiple participants will form a party together)
- 70 - rounds of the game
- 30 - debrief (we learnt from previous runs that we need time to debrief - the roleplay can be more intensive for people than it can be expected at first)
- 5 - micro retrospective on the workshop format
What the presenters expect to learn:
- Observe political behaviour in people (time and again) always gives us new insights. We do not know in advance what they will be, however.
- Run an 'optimized' form of the game (Emmanuel already tried this out, based on KoenVanExem's suggestions at Agile Open Belgium)
History of this session:
We have run the "Candidate" and other political games at
- Retrospective Facilitators' Gathering 08 & 09
- Agile Open France 08
- Agile Open Belgium 09
- XP-Days France 09
- Université du SI 09
- various informal venues (2 in bars, 1 in a hotel, 1 in a corporate meeting room)
Minimum setting. Maybe tables, maybe chairs.
Additional material needed:
1 flipchart & easel