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Old 10-01-2017, 04:45 AM   #14
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Cambridge, UK
Default Re: What details for organizations *must* you have?

Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
The thing I find B&C lacks is an ready-to-use equivalent, for organisations, of the way we describe characters' personalities using Disadvantages and Quirks.

I spend a large chunk of my working time dealing with large companies that have quite distinct cultures, and patterns of behaviour that most of their staff display. This may be just a question of creating appropriate Quirks, Compulsive Behaviours and Odious Personal Habits for the job.
Originally Posted by Ghostdancer View Post
Could you expand on this a bit please, John?
I'll try. The organisations I was talking about are present-day companies in the computer industry (I'd prefer not to name names). They have pretty distinct and recognisable cultures, which means their staff to tend to have common patterns of behaviour.

Thinking about it some more, I don't believe this means the staff all have the corresponding disadvantages and quirks as personal disadvantages. However, they probably don't have opposing traits, since that would lead to significant cognitive dissonance. It's more that the staff assume a kind of persona (Social Engineering, p61) that acts as a filter for their individual personalities. So I think what I'm looking for in an organisation description is an outline of the kind of persona that the organisation presents to outsiders.

Now, the organisation's own idea of what that persona is like may be significantly different from how it's perceived from the outside. For a archetypical example, local police forces in the USA seem to dislike having the FBI get involved in their cases, because they perceive it as arrogant, condescending, secretive and uninterested in local details that can be crucial to an investigation. I'm sure the FBI doesn't perceive itself that way! I'd expect their view of their persona to have qualities like highly-skilled, reassuring, controlling information carefully to prevent leaks, and rapidly getting to the core of the problem. Both views of an organisation are valuable to a GM.
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