Dungeons & Dragons & Business

Dungeons & Dragons was created in the 70’s and is a tabletop roll-playing-game that takes place in a world of high fantasy. It involves players assuming the roles of fictional characters and talking their way through quests and adventures with the help of the god-like Dungeon Master who creates and governs these imaginary worlds.

The game is making a major comeback; comic shops host weekly events, online forums organize groups of gamers from all around the world to play virtually, and it has even been called “Great TV” by a Slate reporter.

Though the game takes place in fantasy worlds and fate is decided with plastic dice, playing D&D may be good practice for future business owners and entrepreneurs. Players must demonstrate an aptitude for creativity, problem solving, and people skills in order to do well at the game.


Being an imaginative person is no easy feat. There are books upon books of how our minds work, and how we can flex our creative muscles — and mostly it boils down to following creative pursuits outside of work.

This is something D&D does exceptionally well, players have to create and act eccentric characters, rationalize new world rules, and solve new problems. Not to mention the entire game takes place in the mind. Players are constantly flexing their creative muscles to have fun and visualize an environment in their heads.

Though the subject matter is different, marketers and businessmen use these same creative skills to complete daily tasks. Social media marketers write and create all day and need to remain flexible and imaginative, for instance. While a business owner is constantly thinking of new ways to expand their business. Creativity is at the heart of the entrepreneurial spirit.

Problem Solving/ Adaptation

Knight-chessAnything and everything can happen at any time in real life, and in Dungeons & Dragons. Goblins can emerge from trees on a forest path, dragons can dive from the clouds during an easy battle and escalate the difficulty, characters who seemed helpful can back-stab you in games of political intrigue, and a host of other situations are all fair game.

To solve any given problem players need to understand it, manage risks, and divine a solution. This isn’t dissimilar from managing problems in a business. Sure a store owner isn’t going to fight a dragon, but they will deal with supply constraints, disgruntled employees, or seasonal dips in sales. Those daily hurtles also require an understanding of the situation at hand, a risk assessment, and creative solutions.

People Skills

Photograph by Pui Shan Chan

Even though D&D often takes place among a nerdier and more reclusive crowd, the improvisational skills and social acuity needed to do well in a campaign transition easily to the “real world.” D&D is a social environment in the same way that many networking events are, sometimes you play with friends, sometimes you’re in a new group, and in every instance you need to work with people to share information, compromise, and accomplish specific goals.

So Dungeons & Dragons offers more than just a few hours of escapism for players, it allows marketers and business owners to flex their social and mental muscles. But life is no game, and you’ll need powerful partners to help you put these skills to the best use and conquer your competition. The Primm Company is a marketing company that’s been around about as long as D&D, and we’re ready, willing, and able to help you on your next (marketing) campaign.