The world of virtual reality is teeming with possibilities, but this is one that we didn't see coming: you can now practise firing someone in VR, with a company called Talespin offering the experience as part of a managerial training programme.
Of course, VR tends to be thought of predominantly in terms of gaming: we had Valve's Half-Life Alyx earning rave reviews earlier in the year, and the similarly-hyped launch of the Oculus Quest 2 more recently. But, of course, it shouldn't come as too much surprise that there are companies out there looking to use the tools of Virtual Reality for business purposes.
READ MORE:Medal Of Honor VR game revealed!
You can keep reading to learn more about Talespin, and to see a unique video of a virtual firing...
Watch Barry's virtual firing in this video
As you can see in the video below, the LA-based company Talespin has created a whole host of virtual humans to help teach managerial skills. One of these creations is a man called Barry, who you can practise firing within a virtual environment.
Wearing a headset and using your voice to lead the conversation, you will garner reactions from Barry as you go: the conversation can go a number of different ways, with one particular outcome leaving Barry with his head in his hands in woe.
Apparently, the real-life humans who have used this software have found it very realistic, and they've even clammed up with sweaty palms - or broken into tears in extreme cases - when firing Barry has not gone well.
To get the feel off how exactly this interaction works, take a look at the video to see Barry in action...
What else does Talespin do?
As the Talespin website tells us, the company does more than just allow you to lay people off for your own sick enjoyment/professional development. They've got a whole suite of tools dubbed 'Leading Through Uncertainty' to help managers develop in these strange times.
The range of training scenarios which Talespin offers "utilize role play with virtual human avatars to help leaders practice key communication skills like active listening, understanding and empathizing with employees, de-escalation, succinct communication, and self-awareness", says the official website.
Talespin's CEO and Co-Founder, Kyle Jackson, says this about the project: “The COVID-19 pandemic has sent every organization into a period of self-reflection as we ask ourselves: what we can do right now to better take care of our people and customers.
“We saw ‘Leading Through Uncertainty’ as a way to help organizations take a people-first approach to their business operations, enabling them to leverage XR, one of the most impactful learning and empowerment technologies we’ve ever seen, to better prepare their leaders and teams.
“COVID-19 has forced us all to face workforce disruption on an accelerated timeline, with remote work, talent gaps, digital transformation, and other ‘future of work’ trends now present as mission-critical challenges, and we’ve designed our platform and our company from the beginning to answer these disruptions.”
You can learn more about Talespin over on the company's official website, which you can find at this link. Just go easy on Barry, will you?