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+ - Is Gamification a Good Motivator? -> 2

Submitted by
CowboyRobot
CowboyRobot writes "Growing up, many of our teachers used "gamification" techniques such as a gold star sticker on a test (essentially a "badge") or a public display of which students had completed a set of readings ("leaderboard"). These were intended to motivate students to strive to do better.

Now, these techniques are increasingly common in the workplace where the parallel with computer games is more intentional. A report by Gartner predicts that "by 2015, 50% of organizations that manage innovation processes will gamify those processes". One example would be assigning badges for submitting work on time, another would be having a leaderboard in an office to show who completed a training module first.

The idea of using game mechanics in work or study environments is not new, but its ubiquity is. Educators can discuss how effective gamification is in classrooms, but how useful is it as a motivator in the workplace?"

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Is Gamification a Good Motivator?

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  • Is Gamification good policy? Yeah, it's not. I'd rather have the $. When I worked for a multinational, I could count on some stupid employee survey coming out every quarter that supposedly said "Look, we really want to make you suckers happy, but we found you don't care anything about money...what you want is acknowledgment and pats on the back." Yeah, I could find nobody who shared that sentiment. People work for money. You can't put your kids through college with that shiny certificate of achievement
  • Something tells me badges would turn into...

    "Scrum Worker" - Finish the most amount of work-hours in one sprint
    "Scrum Worker II" - Finish the most amount of work-hours in two sprints
    "Build Breaker" - Break the current build
    "Build Fixer" - Fix the build after someone broke it
    "You saw nothing!" - Fix the build after you broke it without anybody else knowing.

Sigmund Freud is alleged to have said that in the last analysis the entire field of psychology may reduce to biological electrochemistry.

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