Immersive Agile Learning Experiences – Enabled by Mindset Change

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Immersive Agile Learning Experiences – Enabled by Mindset Change
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Immersive Agile Learning by ADAPTOVATE

Do you recognise this scenario? You sit down, pen in hand, excited to learn something new from a day of training. Getting a break from the daily grind is an added bonus and a welcome change of pace.

The instructor arrives (in person or online) and the first slide flashes across the screen… 8 hours and 110 slides later, your bloodshot eyes stare at the clock, counting down the seconds to the next coffee break. The monotony is broken only by the occasional multiple-choice quiz and finally, FINALLY, you receive a certificate, as proof that you’ve survived the day. What did we learn? Who can remember? Did we actually change our mindset? What a waste!

Immersive learning addresses this issue and enables mindset change: it’s about making sure that people actually retain what you’re trying to teach them. The most powerful way to do so; make learning fun, tangible and real.


Learning works best when it is contextual. That is, when the learner is using it in real world or relevant situations. It’s far easier to teach Scuba diving in the sea and cooking in the kitchen. Why would learning Agile be any different? Immersive learning leans into this premise: learning about Agile ways of working by placing the learner in a simulated agile environment.

Becoming agile is easy to say but hard to do. In Business Agility Consulting and Training, we strive to transform organisations into new ways of working which requires a shift in mindset. Well-designed immersive learning experiences shift mindsets, enabling an effective transition into agility.


An Agile Simulation immerses the participant in an agile way of working. The participant experiences first-hand the value of autonomous teams that communicate with each other, align towards delivering an outcome and learn from their own performance. The value experienced by the learner is immediate, tangible, and applicable to daily work.

Going through this experience creates a mindset change and leaves participants with a greater working knowledge of Agile, compared to non-immersive training experiences or simply reading a book.

We have seen this time and again when engaging with clients in Agile Simulations such as The Ball Game (managing workflow and iterative delivery), Agile Lego Game (Sprint Simulation) or Party Planning (Agile Fundamentals).

Seeing teams self-organise in the same room, physically or virtually, towards a common goal is magical.
  • Immersive learning increases engagement of the participant – which means what they are learning is more likely to stick. This is because immersive learning is enjoyable and helps people connect the theory with real world application
  • We know that the ability to retain new knowledge depends on the teaching method. If you leave a student to read a book, they might retain 10%. Add a teacher with PowerPoint (like many providers out there!) and the participant might retain 30%. But as we increase engagement by practicing what was learned, retention can rise to as high as 90%. If you want your team to learn something new and for it to actually stick, one of the best ways to do so is through an immersive learning experience.

These simulations and games allow for the participants to live key agile concepts:

  • The power of self-organising teams and autonomy
  • The power of data
  • The importance of retrospectives
  • The importance of best practice sharing
  • The importance of focus on delivery and challenging your mindset.

When the teams move out of the simulation to implementation in their projects, the concepts remain as they have already experienced them first-hand.


Looking at feedback from clients proves how the immersive experiences changed the way they see Agile.