Ant communications: experience them through a simulator
Ant communications are very different from the communications we typically experience in our organizational teams. In fact they are so different that to really understand them you have to try and find some way to experience them. Here is one way!
Ants predominantly use Pheromones (chemical signals) to communicate – for more on this see The perfect mobile messaging system: pheromone signals.
A tool for helping us experience an ants-eye view of team communications is a neat little simulation game from forgefx, a San Francisco-based interactive 3D simulation and visualization company, which allows us to run a simulation of the actions and interactions of two adjacent ant colonies.
I suggest you run through the simulation three times and note the main differences between ant communications and our normal team or group communications.
The first time run through without intervening.
The second time drastically increase the number of ants in one of the two colonies.
The third time move the rocks between the ants and their food sources and see what happens.
Now compare your notes with the first 6 principles of the bioteams manifesto.
Any surprises? Drop me a comment!
To activate the simulation click here
Bioteams Books Reviews
Humans and animals do not need complete information to act; they can operate on various clues provided there is a sufficient context. Organizational teams can also use this thin slicing technique in conjunction with short messaging to enhance their performance. Malcolm Gladwell’s introspective book Blink digs deep into the abyss of human cognition to illustrate the human ability to think at a subconscious level. The idea of thin slicing is used where one is introduced to only a few snippets of information which lead to a series of conclusions based on moments of rapid cognition – an ability claimed to be intrinsically dormant in most humans. By bioteams guest author Max Bhanabhai.