Whenever there is a scientific discovery or a technological advance, the majority of society is asked the same question: “And what is that for?” What is a neutrino for, what is Blockchain for and now what is the Metaverse for? What they really mean is what it is for them.
Why Do Companies Want the Metaverse?
We live in the age of utility. What does not have instant practical use is simply not worth it. But this need for utility is not exclusive to people, but also to businesses.
That is why when something new appears, and it does so with as much force as the Metaverse, companies begin to think about how they can take advantage of it.
Because in the business world there is only one thing worse than not knowing, and that is being the only one who doesn’t know.
so when Zuckerberg announced his Metaverse (this would make five articles), all the big companies began to see how they could take advantage of it.
The first thing was to find out what it was about, but unlike other disruptive technologies such as Quantum, Blockchain, Web 3 … the Metaverse has something that makes it unique and extremely attractive, and that is that it is easy to understand.
Everyone has seen The Matrix or one of the twenty movies that talk about parallel realities. The idea of a virtual world similar to ours was already raised by Plato (among others), but it has been accompanying humanity since the beginning of its days.
And as soon as it appeared, many companies began to apply the principles of the Metaverse, but without having changed their own. That is, the company comes, or connects, only to work. This idea is also older than the office itself, and not even remote work has managed to banish it.
A company, and it does not matter the sector to which we refer, is what its workers are. If you have critical, open and curious employees, that’s how your company will be.
Therefore, the maxim of a company should not be that its employees “perform” a task, but rather that they develop and evolve so that the company does the same.
A space for meeting, collaboration, learning and exchanging ideas that go beyond the specific work itself. And this is where the Metaverse can really make a difference .
To date, most companies are committed to using the Metaverse for immersive meetings, where there is greater interaction between its attendees, reports can be shared, strategies are developed, and specific or general aspects are debated… in short, the aim is to “reproduce” a physical meeting, with all the richness that it implies compared to a telematic meeting.
In addition, it is beginning to be raised in project execution meetings. The Metaverse in these scenarios allows, for example, two architects to get into the plans of some new offices almost literally, improving the joint vision and, therefore, the communication and collaboration between them. The screen is not shared by Zooming, but the space is shared by both entering the design itself.
Another focus that is being worked on is the training part. Online training, in general, does not manage to overcome the problems of distance. The receiver is not on the same plane, he is a passive student, in which the feedback does not end up being natural.
The Metaverse can partly solve those barriers. There can be greater interaction between the parties, and more enriching “organic” debates can be generated.
Getting a passive audience to become a classroom of people more committed to what is being taught and to their own peers. In addition, the use of audiovisual, interactive and personalized material can be even more efficient and productive than in physical training.
And of course, examples of Meetings, Congresses and Presentations have already been seen in the Metaverse with all the advantages that this entails.
Savings in travel and emissions, elimination of distances, the possibility of incorporating different materials… Even unlimited capacity, or at least greater than in a physical event. But there is something missing from this list of possibilities that the Metaverse offers to companies, and that is the human factor .
If we realize, everything that we have been describing previously has a common element, they are designed for the work of their employees.
Let’s not fool ourselves, executive work is (and should be) one of the great objectives of a company, but it is not the only important one. Anyone who has worked in an office knows that working side by side with your colleagues is as essential as having a coffee or beer break with them after work.
It is at that moment where the bonds are strengthened, cohesion is improved and the group feeling is reaffirmed.
In fact, numerous studies (such as Elton Mayo’s Theory of Human Relations ) indicate that workers value the feeling of well-being and union with their colleagues more than the task they perform, which results in greater involvement and productivity.
So, if the human relations of the workers are so important for the development of the group and the company itself, why not take advantage of the possibilities that the Metaverse gives us to promote and expand them?
See the Metaverse beyond the technology that supports it, as a meeting and collaboration space between workers. A space of trust, close, where infinite options open up, such as flying, visiting Mars, attending a concert in the Mariana Trench … Universes where no human being has been, and discovering them together, as a team, just like we’re doing with the metaverse.
The Metaverse cannot replace the real world but it can offer us possibilities that we had never imagined, personalized to the extreme based on the personal and professional characteristics of each group. Only it is necessary that the companies begin to have more imagination.
It is not about choosing between the virtual world and the analog world, but combining both to achieve the best result. Technology is already here, and it will be as good or as bad as the reasons we use it. So before companies wonder what the Metaverse is for, they should think about what they want to use it for.