Elearning! October-November

October-November 2013

Elearning! Magazine: Building Smarter Companies via Learning & Workplace Technologies.

Issue link: https://elmezine.epubxp.com/i/201066

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Case StudySerious Games Tiys Battling the Villains of Fun SERIOUS GAMES REMOVE BOREDOM, GLOOM AND MONOTONY FROM SERIOUS LEARNING. BY JAY M. WINCHESTER Carnival Cruise Lines, the world's largest cruise line (based on the number of passengers carried), has the annual capacity to help an estimated 4.5 million travelers enjoy cruising the high seas looking for romance, adventure and fun. Afer all, the cruise line has been doing exactly that since 1972. However, providing efective training for 80,000 travel agents who are not Carnival employees is challenging. One of the world's bestknown names in travel as well as proud member of World's Leading Cruise Lines, Carnival had been running classroom and online-based travel agent training for years. Its results were good, just not good enough. There was an important ingredient missing. Lee Clark, manager of Worldwide Sales Training and Development for Carnival, was certain that if he could indentify it, then the effectiveness of Carnival's travel agent training and volume of travel booked would increase dramatically. "When we began the redesign of our learning delivery system, we refected on what our past system did not do," Clark says. "One of the major shortcomings was that it did not drive engagement, meaning that it was a 'one-anddone'-type program. Once the travel agent completed the program, he or she had no reason to re-engage with either the training or with us. Ongoing engagement became a key objective in what we wanted to build." With increased agent engagement as the order of the day, Clark set out to revamp and enhance Carnival's agent training program. While looking over various training techniques, platforms and strategies, he hit upon what for Carnival and its industry would be a frst: game-based learning. Clark became an enthusiastic proponent of the strategy, believing it would produce the desired results. Others within the corporate leadership were less convinced. Clark soon found himself in the role of evangelist. "It took some persuading to go the gaming route, since it had never been done before in [our] industry," he says. However, once the key decision-makers understood that Carnival's travel agents mirrored precisely the de- mographics of online gamers, and that a game could be easily updated so that the learning was always current, it became an easy decision. Tere was another key factor in turning resistance into agreement. "Once I was able to show the decision makers that we would be working with a well-established vendor whose staf demonstrated they understood us, then it became a nobrainer," Clark recalls. Enter Sealund, a well-known Tampa Bay-based developer of innovative training solutions, including serious games. Since 1985, Sealund has been pioneering e-learning among major corporations, government and military organizations worldwide. With its innovative training solutions including serious games, simulations and e-learning, the company creates virtual environments built on instruction- Elearning! October / November 2013 39

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