More than one generation now has been brought up with computer games. The presence of gaming has a slow effect on our understanding of how to understand behavior - and how to make use of that knowledge. Right now a wave of gamification startups hits the markets. But with all the benefits of this approach there are also risks. We want to explore the two.
"For marketers, gamification is about integrating game mechanics into marketing activities to drive participation. The power of games, if they are based on the right incentives, can create breakthrough engagement with any audience. As marketers are becoming increasingly aware, game play is now evolving into a bona fide movement--a significant trend that is altering the way businesses interact with customers. Here's how you can make it a part of your efforts."
In the motivational paradigm the educational content is likely to be a disappointing experience after the enjoyment of the game. In the reinforcement paradigm the educational content runs a high risk of becoming an unpleasant task, undertaken only to arrive at the pleasurable part. Although it is true that the whole experience can be called ‘immersive’ or ‘engaging’ this engagement is reserved for the part that entertains us. The solution is as simple as it is complicated; blending entertainment with education. This means no division between learning and play but learning BY playing and vice versa. Here we reach the ‘no cookie cutter solution’ area. To use the very skill you are trying to teach as (one of) the driving game mechanic takes a creative approach. It takes a different approach every time.
What can we learn from gamification?DeveloperTechYou hear a lot about 'gamification' or 'games-based learning' these days. People claim that adding a games element to something serious will make it perform better.
"One way of describing how games-based learning works is to look at how it can be used to teach people by stealth. One oft-quoted example comes from the Karate Kid movie. In the film Daniel is taught karate by painting a fence, scrubbing the floor and waxing a car, ie, in ways so obtuse that he doesn’t realise he is training. When a good game is used to teach a skill, players are so immersed in the technology that they require no other motivation to keep them engaged."
While we could dodge the question of gamification ethics and its potential to cause harm to society, I don't think we should.
"Let’s be clear: gamification is a (perhaps the most) powerful tool for voluntary behavior change that we’ve ever seen. We all know that it can be used for good (see: Foldit, Zamzee, Speed Camera Lottery, etc etc) and that — despite the banality of some implementations — there is no evidence of it being used widely for evil. We also know that the game, film, loyalty and behavioral economics industries don’t really have an omnibus code of ethics, despite their persuasive natures. We also know that some communities (e.g. games) vehemently resist the notion of codes of conduct because of their concerns about censorship. So, it would be relatively easy for us to feel unfairly singled out for criticism, and to take the same approach as theirs: bruising battles in courts both legal and public. But I think we can do better, save ourselves the cost and hassle of a future fight, and ensure we have a greater impact on the world."
Google SalesPro (screenshot) After discovering that 80% of employees were putting it off until the last minute, Google used social media and gamification to reinvent their internal online sales training program.
"Social networking isn’t the only hot trend in elearning design these days. By applying game mechanics, Google also increased consumption seven fold. But at what cost?
“The goal is to use your time productively so that you walk away more able to do something than you were before you took the training,” say Allen. “We’re very time sensitive in the work that we do because when we’re teaching someone to do something like sell on the floor effectively, they’re not on the floor selling.”
Time is an expense. Online trainings need to build skills quickly. Games can be engaging, but if they’re just entertaining and don’t actually build skills or increase retention, they fail. The amount of learning that occurs by the amount of time invested is what determines not just the effectiveness, but the fiscal prudence of an online training initiative."
"The whole point of gamification is that by incorporating things like virtual rewards, progress, knowing how you're doing and how you're comparing to other people, when you apply that to literally anything, people perform more. That's because at the end of the day, reputation matters more than money."
"Gamification mechanics should be simple to understand. All they are are the actions that players take (“agency”) and the rules that limit those actions to create pressure (“urgency”). Between those two poles lie an interplay that is described as a “loop” (“I hit ball, see if ball stays inside the court and if opponent returns ball, I hit ball again”), and a whole bunch of loops produces a “dynamic” (we trade the ball many times until one of us makes a mistake and loses a point)."
"I had a conversation with a reward and recognition professional the other day. They asked me “what do you think of gamification in the recognition world?” The implied addition to that sentence was, “versus the incentive world.”
My response… “Not good for recognition. Good for incentive.”
He said – “y’know – that might make a good post.”"
"Currently, gamified apps are trendy novelties, many of which, said the research firm, will fail in the next two years.
For gamification initiatives to succeed, they need to move beyond obvious game mechanics such as point badges and leaderboards and employ more subtle game design elements, such as balancing competition and collaboration, or defining a meaningful game economy, said Brian Burke, research vice-president at Gartner."
Gamification: a new approach to revive business to business companies.
"Who doesn’t love to play games? It relaxes our brains and muscles, gives us pleasure and excitement and also reduces our stress through the sense of achievement or winning a game. In short playing games is without any doubt a great thing for every person. Now what would happen if the organizations or marketing campaigns were also involved in some kind of games? Will it increase their productivity and performance of the businesses as well? Too many organizations which have already adopted this approach, the answer are a big YES!"
Gamification is getting bigger, it's being handy used by companies nowadays. In this blog we discuss how gamification can lead up to more engagement.
"The traditional four P’s: product, price, promotion and place are well known for to each organization. The P’s are regularly often expanded tocomplemented with other versions as well likesuch as: periphery (environmental factors) or personnel. What started out as a hype known as: gamification, may have the potential to become a respected concept. And with thatthus we can add pleasure to the line list of P’s."
"What if working hard and playing hard weren't mutually exclusive? A new trend toward "gamification" of HR software attempts to combine work and fun, and although the notion could easily be dismissed as a fad, experts say the reasons to "gamify" work hold water -- even if the first products might not."
"We live in a world where context is becoming increasingly important. Consumers are bombarded with too much information from a variety of sources. Because of this, what people hear and see gets lost without context. Without that context, relevance and meaning are lost and people lose interest altogether. In order to create engagement, users need the right amount of feedback at the right time."
“The problem with gamification is its name. It confuses people,” points out Alex Bray, retail channel director at Misys. Gamification today is a catch-all term for a variety of tools used to capture the online attention of customers and employees and to influence their behaviour. But companies have used elements of gamification over the years without calling it by name. At a basic level, customer loyalty cards, frequent flyer schemes or promotional contests are old school versions of today’s online leader boards, avatars and virtual badges used by video game designers to pull in users and keep them playing. The tools have changed.
"While elements of gamification — leaderboards, badges and levels — have appeared in a business context for years, recent technologies are driving increased interest and greater potential in this field. Real-time data analytics, mobility, cloud services, and social media platforms can accelerate and improve the outcomes of gamification, while a broader understanding of behavioral science suggests new applications."
"Gamification has finally hit a significant speed bump—overinflation from hype and expectations. In a recently published Gartner article, in-house analysts have predicted that about 80% of gamified solutions will fail in reaching business objectives by 2014 due to poor design. This could be easily avoided if people would simply just use good gamification design, but that simply isn’t the case."
"Ultimately, recognition means different things to different people. Using game mechanics to recognise the value that people are adding can be a powerful motivator for some. It’s definitely worth considering gamification as one part of a broad set of tactics to boost employees’ sense of belonging, esteem and self-actualization.
This broad set of tactics shouldn’t neglect ‘old fashioned’ recognition – like thank yous and accreditation. And you must be careful about what the game focuses its recognition on – meaningful and value adding behaviour? Or shallow glory hunting?"
"Gamification at its heart is about engagement, whether it’s the end customer or the employee workforce but it’s the latter I’m more concerned with here. There is an explosion of workflow and enterprise task management tools which have been designed and built purely from a gamified perspective but I’m not convinced any thought has been given to actual productivity. And this is going to seriously damage the concept from the inside. Already there was a very loud and public spat detailed in GigaOM last year between two factions in the gamification camp which I wrote about this time last year on BPM Redux. There are also numerous startups launching or in beta phase claiming that their gami-productivity solution is here to solve the problem of completing boring and mundane tasks. I stumbled across one today which claims to let you set goals and save creatures from danger."
"Like anything else, gamification can be done well and it can be done poorly. In any new field that captures the collective imagination like gamification has, you will see companies, driven by the “novelty and hype”, copying what they see others doing, doing it poorly, and failing. And they do this without any real understanding of why they’re doing it, just with a blind faith that if it worked for someone else, it will work for them. Both big and small companies are susceptible to this – look no further than Google News Badges (now, thankfully deceased) for a great example of this kind of thinking."
"The workplace is no place for games, right? Not anymore. Gamification, an idea originally created as a way for brands to incentivize and encourage consumers to engage, has entered the enterprise level.
As a younger generation, armed with their smartphones full of games and apps, enter the workforce, many employers are finding new ways to incentivize, train, and challenge their staff."
"“Serious businesses cannot ignore the transformative possibilities of gamification across their enterprise,” said Carter Lusher of Ovum Research. “The partnership between Capgemini Consulting and Badgeville signifies two global leaders teaming up to bring these powerful techniques to businesses aiming to modernize their entire employee and customer management experiences.”"
"Whether it is to design a new system, troubleshoot bugs or implement new features, developers are the chief problem solvers in any enterprise. D Developers and programmers are software engineers who are often tasked with finding solutions for abstract problems in addition to utilizing new, unfamiliar technology. Recent initiatives by prominent tech companies such as Nokia, AutoDesk and Microsoft shows that gamification may have a significant role in facilitating a developer’s growth and productivity."
Earlier this week, Gartner Research released a study with the headline “Gartner predicts that by 2014, 80 percent of current gamified applications will fail to meet business objectives primarily because of poor design.” (#Gamification Actually Shows...
"Gartner itself admits there’s still a future in gamification. Despite the 80% failure rate in 2014, in 2015 Gartner believes “40% of Global 1000 corporations will use gamification as the primary mechanism to transform primary business operations. By 2016, gamification will be an essential element for brands and retailers to drive customer marketing and loyalty. By 2017 50% of Global 1000 will use gamification and learning for recruitment processes. A gamification program will be a key organizational enabler for 75% of enterprise-oriented dev ops initiatives, up from less than 1% today.”
These forecasts don’t suggest a future without gamification as much as they do a present of still trying to figure it out. How have your gamification efforts paid off, and are you still planning a future with them?"
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