Friday, 18 December 2015

Problem With Nerf Guns

The problem with Nerf Guns in the office

is those that enjoy it think of it being like this:

For those of us who just don't get it 
as they've grown beyond the age of 12 think that grown men playing with toy guns make them look like this:

Wrong Context 

Yes, there's nothing wrong with the guns themselves and kids enjoy playing with them at home and there's nothing wrong with having tea-time battles over the sofa or a garden nerf war.  The problem comes when that fun is taken into the office as it interrupts and interferes with the professional working environment and its all about context.

First and foremost it must be remembered that the workplace is where you go to work and not to play games.  It could be said that having a battle can relieve stressful moments but it also causes a lot of stress for people who don't appreciate the thought of being shot in the face by flying foam bullets.

It can also be said that it can act as a barrier for forming relationships between those who enjoy it and those that find it immature.  It's very difficult to respect someone who's just been running around like a lunatic shooting other people with a toy gun especially if that person is a manager.  You don't want to get carried away and shout abuse in the heat of a battle that would normally be banned in normal office talk.

The nerf gun culture is very prevalent in the technological start-up industries that are usually formed by groups of young men of a similar age.  Yes it probably works in this sort of context where everybody is a fan of the foam bullet. The problem however is that as the company grows, a start-up company with a nerf gun culture might find that it is difficult to recruit anybody older with more experience as they are turned off by the childish toys - as they'll feel that they wont fit in because it looks like a young person's company.

So if you're thinking about introducing nerf guns into the workplace, then ask yourself what long term effect its likely to have and whether there might be better ways of "having fun" where people from a wide range of ages and back grounds can participate?

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