Championing Employees’ Mental Wellbeing Through Mobile Esports Tournament

Little boy playing a mobile game against his sister

#StayAtHome for a long time can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be.

The COVID-19 outbreak is presenting new and unique challenges to work routine and culture. While a continued period of isolation may be a necessary measure for public health, it has been proven, however, that weeks into self-isolation could also lead to many adverse phycological effects of stress.

Working from home full-time for the first time and being isolated from co-workers, friends and family have definitely disrupted our daily living routines, one way or another. Acknowledging the need to stay engaged during these crucial times, Forest Interactive—one of the tech companies in Malaysia—steps up the work-from-home game with an internal mobile esports tournament: Forest Interactive Gaming Habitat Team (FIGHT): Win From Home.

“Social distancing doesn’t mean social isolation,” said FIGHT Project Manager Chantal-Denise Ortega. “It’s been more than a month since we last saw each another, so we’ve thought of doing something to encourage virtual social interaction while working remotely from home.”

An Escape from Harsh Reality

In times of crisis and anxiety such as today’s, gaming has been proven to be one of the ways of escaping the harsh reality, as noted by World Health Organization (WHO) in its recent statement. In fact, for many of us, spending a brief one or two hours a day playing games helps to cope with stress at work or school, life, and at this point, staying at home in isolation.

Syahrizal Hallil, one of the participants, told us that the tournament was not only to relieve his feelings of loneliness and anxiety but also to foster a sense of teamwork and camaraderie.

“Playing Mobile Legends in the tournament has taught my team members and me how to work together and communicate effectively towards achieving the same goal,” he said.

Syahrizal, who is also the Videographer and Motion Graphic Designer at Forest Interactive, agreed that playing mobile games together as a team promotes positive emotions and enhances brain memory, information processing and task-switching cognitive abilities.

“We went through at least 4 hours of training every night as preparation before putting our skills to test during the tournament. In my opinion, it was like killing two birds with one stone. We played for fun and, at the same time, polished the essential skills needed for work.”

FIGHT Win From Home teams in action. 

A Form of Reward

Additionally, the company views the initiative as rewarding its employees for their unwavering commitment, especially in the coronavirus gloom. In a statement, Chantal clarified that the tournament aimed to recognize employees’ hard work on top of addressing the mental wellbeing issues during the isolation.

“We have been working remotely from home for close to two months now and we are doing our best to keep the productivity at an optimum level. As an employee myself, I understand how hard to keep a positive mindset at all times, especially when we were used to real physical interaction before.”

“By organizing this esports tournament online, it helps us to cope with emotional and mental difficulties. At the same time, it is a way of giving back to the people who have been working so hard to develop our products and services,” added Chantal.

FIGHT Win From Home was live-streamed on FIGHT and Oi, Jom! Facebook pages. 

FIGHT, or Forest Interactive Gaming Habitat Team, is the esports arm of the company. It focuses on the innovation and development of the esports industry through tournaments, showcases and seminars. A total of 20 talents has participated in the 4-day tournament which was held from April 10-13. The tournament was also live-streamed on FIGHT Official Facebook Page and Oi Jom!, recording over 1,000 views.

Read more news on FIGHT Win From Home here. Follow our Facebook and Instagram for more updates on the latest news and esports tournaments.

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Basir Zainuddin

The author Basir Zainuddin

Basir Zainuddin is a Copywriter at Forest Interactive, helping to share the company's unique culture and its invaluable inventions through storytelling and content creation. When he's not writing, you can find him chilling on the beach or binge-watching thriller shows on Netflix.