Gamify Your Work


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Looming deadlines, demanding clients, boring projects, and even feelings of fatigue that may signal the beginnings of burnout any of these everyday afflictions can making it tough to dredge up the energy to be psyched about your work and be amazing at what you do. These feelings can disappear if we shift our perspective to gamify work. Let's look at how we can bring gamification theories and practices to our work to spur the process of enhancing productivity and innovation to produce easily, better, more, and get the epic win.

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Gamify Your Work

  1. 1. Gamify Your Work Denise R. Jacobs <AngleBrackets /> Conference Las Vegas, NV 28 October 2013
  2. 2. Twitter Game On! I am: @denisejacobs This fine event is: #anglebrackets And I’m talkin’ ‘bout: #gamifyingwork
  3. 3. I like to make stuff
  4. 4. I did write this
  5. 5. Speaker + Author + Creativity Evangelist Used with permission:
  6. 6. Let’s go!
  7. 7. Watch this much?
  8. 8. Like her?
  9. 9. Or him?
  10. 10. An alternative
  11. 11. In this book…
  12. 12. Some people’s reality
  13. 13. Food for thought “The opposite of play isn’t work. It’s depression.” - Brian Sutton-Smith, The Ambiguity of Play
  14. 14. Most people’s attitude about work
  15. 15. Could it be like this?
  16. 16. Work or games?
  17. 17. Game on
  18. 18. Low energy at work?
  19. 19. You need to shift focus It’s your neurological system’s indication that you are squandering energy on the wrong goals.
  20. 20. Our natural preference Challenge over boredom also Productivity over dissipation
  21. 21. But here’s the problem Photo courtesty of Flickr
  22. 22. Work vs. Play Source: [5] Work Game Tasks repetitive, dull repetitive, fun Feedback once a year constantly Goals contradictory, vague clear Path to Mastery unclear clear Rules unclear, intransparent clear, transparent Information too much and not enough right amount at the right time Failure forbidden, punished, don't talk about expected, encouraged, spectacular, it brag about it Status of Users hidden transparent, timely Promotion kiss-up-o-gracy meritocracy Collaboration yes yes Speed/Risk low high Autonomy mid to low high Narrative only if you are lucky yes Obstacles accidential on purpose
  23. 23. Make work more like play!
  24. 24. More specifically, play games Photo from Denise Jacobs
  25. 25. You may ask
  26. 26. Because “Playing games is more fun than fun.” - Jane McGonigal, Reality is Broken
  27. 27. Gamefulness
  28. 28. Gamification The use of game play mechanics for nongame applications.
  29. 29. Game Mechanics
  30. 30. Game Mechanics Principles, rules, and/or mechanisms that govern a behavior through a system of incentives, feedback, and rewards with reasonably predictable outcome. 
  31. 31. Game Mechanics Achievements Appointments Behavioral Momentum Blissful Productivity Bonuses Cascading Information Theory Combos Community Collaboration Countdown Discovery Epic Meaning Free Lunch Infinite Gameplay Levels Loss Aversion Lottery Ownership Points Progression Quests Reward Schedules Status Urgent Optimism Virality
  32. 32. Game Mechanics are building blocks
  33. 33. You can take these blocks
  34. 34. And string them together
  35. 35. To drive a complex sequence
  36. 36. Gaming Dynamics Temporal evolution and patterns of both the game and the players that make the game (or any gamified activity) more enjoyable.
  37. 37. Such as •  Rules •  Parameters •  Time limits •  Players •  Environment
  38. 38. gMechanics+gDynamics+Work=Awesome Google Zurich
  39. 39. Some pointers
  40. 40. Stop multitasking
  41. 41. Figure out some new goals
  42. 42. Food for thought: “In the absence of clearly defined goals, people are forced to concentrate on activity and ultimately become enslaved by it.” - Charles Coonradt, The Game of Work
  43. 43. Banish the Inner Critic
  44. 44. It’s an inside game
  45. 45. Shift your stress
  46. 46. Negative stress
  47. 47. Negative Stress You experience negative stress when you are afraid of failure or danger, and perceive pressure coming from external sources.
  48. 48. Eustress
  49. 49. Eustress Eustress, which comes from internally motivated actions and choices – is stress that we have willingly chosen.
  50. 50. Eustress is good, mmkaay? Eustress makes people feel focused and optimistic, alert, determined, persistent, and exhilarated. Eustress further makes us more ambitious and likely to succeed, try new things, cooperate with others, and gives us a sense of achievement.
  51. 51. Game Changer: Change the question Instead of wondering “Can I do this?” ask yourself “How can I do this?”
  52. 52. Fiero
  53. 53. Caveat Gamer Courtesy of Flickr
  54. 54. Play to your strengths
  55. 55. DO NOT focus on your weaknesses
  56. 56. Why? You will only improve 10-15 % (and it will be painful) - Tom Rath, Strengths Finder 2.0
  57. 57. Ready?
  58. 58. (1) Commit to overcome self-chosen challenges
  59. 59. (1) Commit to overcome self-chosen challenges When you engage in a game, you sign yourself up to tackle unnecessary obstacles in the spirit of learning and having fun. See if you can weave this approach into your work life.
  60. 60. (2) Set-up clear goals, steps, feedback & rewards
  61. 61. (2) Set-up clear goals, steps, feedback & rewards As humans we are optimized to do work and we are happier working hard than relaxing. More satisfying work comes from clear missions, a clear path to get to the desired outcomes, reliable feedback of our progress, and rewards that we value.
  62. 62. Feedback The faster and more clear the feedback, the more motivated you are to move forward.
  63. 63. Rewards May not be what you are thinking (ie, money). Sometimes the reward of doing something well, learning something new, helping others, etc. is more than enough.
  64. 64. (3) Keep upping the ante
  65. 65. Feel the rush By undertaking a difficult challenge, accomplishing something difficult, participating in moving experiences, and stimulating our curiosity, we stimulate a rush of neurochemicals which make us feel confident, energetic, highly motivated, excited, proud, satisfied, powerful and in control.
  66. 66. Embrace #FAIL
  67. 67. Fun failure Contrary to popular thought, “fun failure” actually energizes us and lends a sense of urgent, but flexible optimism.
  68. 68. Urgent Optimism
  69. 69. Maintain urgent optimism With urgent optimism comes extreme selfmotivation: the desire to act immediately to tackle an obstacle combined with the belief that we have a reasonable hope of success.
  70. 70. (4) Make it Epic
  71. 71. (4) Make it Epic Things epic are those of heroic proportions which far surpass the ordinary, especially in size, scale, and intensity.
  72. 72. Game Changer: An Epic mind game Envision yourself embarking upon a challenge that is so awe-inspiring to you that it makes clear your place in the larger scheme of things, stimulates a desire to serve, and gives you a sense of reverence or participating in an expansive process that unites you with others as part of a bigger whole.
  73. 73. An “Epic Win” An outcome that is so extraordinarily positive that is you didn’t know it was possible until you achieved it.
  74. 74. What’s your gaming personality?
  75. 75. Are you a…? •  Achiever •  Explorer •  Socializer •  Killer
  76. 76. Achiever
  77. 77. Achiever Prefer to gain "points," levels, equipment and other concrete measurements of succeeding in a game. Will go to great lengths to achieve rewards that confer them little or no gameplay benefit simply for the prestige of having it.
  78. 78. Achiever suggestions •  Sign yourself up to win the grand prize in employee competitions
  79. 79. Socializer
  80. 80. Socializer Choose to play games for the social aspect, rather than the actual game itself. Gain the most enjoyment from a game by interacting with other players
  81. 81. Socializer suggestions •  Create lunch and learns to help the team share information and learn from each other
  82. 82. Explorer
  83. 83. Explorer Prefer discovering areas, creating maps and learning about hidden places.
  84. 84. Need to look around at their own pace
  85. 85. Particularly like finding
  86. 86. Explorer suggestions •  Discover things that people overlook
  87. 87. Game Changer: Find untapped knowledge
  88. 88. Killer
  89. 89. Killer Thrive on competition with other players Most interested in affecting their environment
  90. 90. Seek worthy opponents to test skills
  91. 91. Killer suggestions •  Create “Collabetition” relationships at work
  92. 92. Some tips for
  93. 93. Curiosity is key
  94. 94. Create an Epic Meaning Statement
  95. 95. “Real-world” quest
  96. 96. There’s an app for that
  97. 97. Minimize Time to Flow
  98. 98. The goal?
  99. 99. Blissful productivity
  100. 100. What’s that? The sense of being deeply immersed in your work that produces immediate and obvious results.
  101. 101. Finding Flow
  102. 102. Tiny Habits
  103. 103. The structure
  104. 104. 2 modifications 1.  In the positive 2.  Present tense
  105. 105. Anchor to a current habit
  106. 106. Congratulate yourself
  107. 107. Big results
  108. 108. What will all of this make you?
  109. 109. Awww yeah!
  110. 110. Go from unfocused
  111. 111. To finding focus
  112. 112. Get your kudos
  113. 113. Your changes
  114. 114. Can infect others
  115. 115. Now’s the time to
  116. 116. Why?
  117. 117. And instead of being like this at work
  118. 118. You can be like this!
  119. 119. No more being a passive spectator
  120. 120. Don’t be chicken, get your game on!
  121. 121. It’s your move – what’s it going to be?
  122. 122. My books The CSS Detective Guide Smashing Books #3 & #3 1/3 InterAct With Web Standards: My chapter: “Storytelling in Webdesign” My chapter: “Learning with the Web”
  123. 123. My articles for further reading four-secrets-enhancingcreative-productivity reigniting-your-creative-spark/ banishing-your-inner-critic/
  124. 124. How to find me Photo used with permission:
  125. 125. Thank You!
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