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Game On: Defusing Destructive Conflict

Do you love games like Pandemic, Oregon Trail, and Dungeons and Dragons? In this session, loosely based on Interact experiential education simulations, you will join a “practice” and take on a specific team member’s role. Through several rounds of game play that combine chance (through a roll of the dice) with individual and team decisionmaking, your “practice” will allocate human resources, identify toxic workplace behaviors, and try to stop the spread of those behaviors to emerge the most positive (and profitable) practice in town.

Each stage of gameplay will highlight research showing the real-life costs of not addressing toxic behavior to team-member, practice, and patient wellbeing, as well as the rewards of preventing and addressing toxic behaviors early. Are you ready to play?


  • Appreciate that there are significant mental, physical, financial, and patient health costs of toxic behaviors in practice
  • Recognize that even high-performing team members are not worth the cost of toxic behaviors
  • Learn to prevent and address toxic behaviors early to help minimize the costs

Sponsored by


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Cyndie Courtney, DVM

cyndie courntey

Dr. Courtney is a small animal veterinarian practicing just south of Kansas City. She is also a recovering toxic team member who speaks, writes, and consults nationally on addressing workplace conflict to improve performance and wellbeing. She was awarded the 2019 World Small Animal Veterinary Medical Association's Next Generation Award for service to the profession and is certified in Workplace Wellness and Healthcare Workplace Violence Prevention and Awareness.