Selected Session

Workshop: Come play with us! Empathy Building via Serious Play

Tracy Evans, Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire
Proposed Track(s)
DevOps, Community, Teams, Agency
Level of expertise
Session Type
Extended (2h)
Time Slot

Come play Rhino Rescue with us! Open Strategy Partners and Ken Rickard have created a cooperative, empathy-building board game, drawing on ideas from Serious Play and cross-cultural movements like DevOps.

A lack of empathy can lead to poor communication and a culture of mistrust, blame, and lack of respect. Developer teams and business teams are a classic example of teams that don’t always understand each other. This prevents—despite everyone’s best intentions—individuals, teams, and organizations from realizing their visions and delivering the value to their customers and stakeholders … no matter how smart your strategy or technology might be.

Building empathy between everyone involved helps create better communication. Better communication builds trust, great teams and products, and strong, productive organizations. 

Rhino Rescue - In this workshop, we’ll be play-testing Rhino Rescue, “You and your animal friends have left the safety of your sanctuary to help save last white rhino …” Players need to work together to cross the game board and reunite with their partners back in the sanctuary.

We’d like your help and contribution in crafting an experience that reflects and reinforces the ideals we’re aiming for.

Workshop Outline:

  • Introduction - Rhino Rescue
  • Project background and concepts
  • Explain Gameplay
  • Play!
  • Facilitated discussion: game experience, real-life applications
  • Wrap-up, conclusions, feedback

Open Strategy Partners - Strategy, marketing, and communications for technology organizations ... with a special focus on open source. Communicate | Connect | Grow