New Interactive Board Game Helps Train New Recruits


A Call Centre has introduced an innovative new learning and team-building game during new employees’ induction training.

‘Garlands Life’ is an interactive board game that uses accelerated learning techniques (including role play) to educate new employees about Garlands’ operations, the requirements of their job roles, and the impact of their actions on customer experiences. It also shows them ways in which they can maximise their own performance and efficiency, work more effectively as a team, and further their own career prospects. The game has been regularly used in the business since November 2007.

It consists of a board with images of local landmarks and sites, movable pieces, four types of cards (Good News, Bad News, Discussion and Fun), and game money. Four new recruits are required for each game, plus five other employees to play Team Manager, Call Centre Manager, HR Manager and other roles. During the game, the players engage with the various Managers and work through such scenarios as ‘what happens to my Reputation Score if I receive a positive email from a customer praising my work?’, ‘what impact will it have if I identify a fault in a call handling procedure and report this to my Team Manager?’ and ‘what impact does it have on others if I phone in sick?’

The Garlands Life concept was developed by the company’s Talk Talk team at its Hartlepool site. “We were thinking of fun ways to enhance the training experience and came up with Garlands Life” explains Senior Call Centre Manager, Jill Dunn. “We believe that the initiative can accelerate peoples’ understanding about the company, its policies and its brand values in an entertaining way as well as get people talking about issues and sharing knowledge”.

“We were so impressed with the work of the Garlands’ Talk Talk team that we have had the game professionally produced by a games manufacturer” said Hannelie Meintjies, Head of Learning and Development. “Every major client area now has a copy of the game and over 30 operational trainers have been fully trained as facilitators. The feedback we’ve had has been fantastic.”

Orange Advisor Nabeel Hussain said after experiencing the game: “I thought the whole game was really useful. Everything you need to know about when you start is included. It was great to learn about the different roles in the business.”

Published On: 14th Jan 2008 - Last modified: 22nd Mar 2017
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4 Comments
  1. This is one of the best “learn while having fun” examples I have seen. Thanks for sharing. If you have any others to share I would love to hear from you.

    Kellie Antes 28 Mar at 1:32 pm
  2. Where can this game be purchased? I have looked online and sent a message to Amazon but no one knows where this game can be purchased. This looks like a great tool to add to our Call Center Agent Program.
    Jack Baxter
    Tarrant County College

    Jack Baxter 4 Aug at 10:00 pm
  3. This was a game that the company designed themselves. The company went bust a few years ago. They had a good reputation for good customer service. With a bit of creativity you could design your own version of the game.

    Jonty Pearce 12 Aug at 8:47 am
  4. Thanks for the reply Jonty. We will give a try.

    Jack Baxter 15 Aug at 10:24 pm
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