Our origin story sounds like the set-up of a bad joke: What happens when a consultant, game developer, and business analyst walk into a museum?
In that fateful 2019 meeting, we realized that despite having different backgrounds, our efforts were dedicated toward the same goal of driving social and economic change through thriving teams.
We also aligned around the power of play. Our collaboration began as a simple question: when are games most effective in the workplace? As the practice of game-based learning and development grew, so did the skepticism of playing at work. We felt games could be better positioned for success if you knew who was playing them. That idea inspired a fully-fledged company.
When we launched as Barometer XP in 2020, we had facilitated sessions for all kinds of teams and reflected on the best conversations and learning outcomes. While analyzing trends and speaking to team leaders, we designed a framework for gauging organizational culture, philosophy for setting play expectations, and approach to facilitating games. These cornerstones represent "the science of play at work."
After 2.5 years of being a service-based company, Barometer XP saw an opportunity to make play more accessible for team leaders and practitioners seeking alternative methods and tools. We packaged our insights and expertise into a software platform that empowers users with a culture assessment and database of games for learning outcomes, as well as expert community of practice and marketplace. In the summer of 2023, we launched a Play Facilitator Certification and membership to further the practice of game-based experiential learning.
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The world has changed, but how we think about work culture has not, and now it's evolved into an urgent issue.
We believe that adult learning should have an experiential component to give teams a chance to practice, experiment, and grow together. Barometer XP has found a niche between traditional professional development and team-building activities to modernize teams for 21st century challenges:
High levels of disengagement, burnout, and turnover have cost companies trillions of dollars globally
The pandemic ushered in a new era of work that disrupts established learning and development models
The need for interpersonal skills is on the rise as solving complex problems requires trust and communication