The Science of Progress Bars: Why Are They Great Motivators?
There are few things in life more satisfying than a full meter.
Whether you’re rolling up to an open street-parking space and the light is still blinking green, or you’re rolling over in the morning to shut off your phone alarm and you see you’re at 100%, there’s a profound level of satisfaction to knowing we’re in the black.
So why not bring that same sense of satisfaction to your employees for their work?
Enter: progress bars. Marketing guru Neil Patel, a man who’s spent most of his (very successful) career trying to figure out what drives consumer behavior online says it plainly: “if I had to pick out the most effective tool for onboarding a user, it would be the progress bar.”
Strong words. But let’s dive deeper for a moment.
Why They Work
Progress bars work essentially on two fronts. Patel goes on to point out in that same post the research Lightspeed Research and Kantar, who performed a study of their own and concluded that “progress indicators increase survey satisfaction” and “increase respondent engagement.”
Engagement and satisfaction. Those are the keys to what we’re talking about here.
As one study of progress bars reported by Psychology Today reveals, “people’s motivation changes with the frame of reference they are using.” Progress bars allow us to orient our employees to their work, helping them to be more engaged, and more satisfied with the work they’re doing.
Employee engagement, as we’ve talked about innumerable times here on the blog, comes from a sense of understanding our position, how we accomplish it, and what value it brings to our coworkers (and the organization itself).
Plainly, a progress bar increases our sense of engagement by allowing us to frame our work around a goal. It’s no secret that much of our day to day tasks can be monotonous. But they’re still things we have to get done—whether or not the results are immediately apparent.
When you’ve got a progress bar attached to that work, you can see not only what you’ve already done, but how much more you’ll need to do to reach your goal. More than just a light at the end of the tunnel, progress bars show us that what we’re doing is making a meaningful impact.
Creating Real Satisfaction
What managers can often miss about the importance of setting and keeping goals is that not all work is good work. If we’re not properly oriented to our essential KPIs as workers, we could be spending time on tasks that aren’t suited for our role.
That sort of behavior leads to real frustration in work, and ultimately leads to disengaged employees.
A progress bar fixes that. It’s a constant reminder of what work needs to be prioritized, and what tasks are going to get us to our goals fastest.
It may seem like this is a lot of power to be attributed to such a simple tool. But the results speak for themselves. See how implementing one in your office this week might be just the tool your employees have been desperate to have!
Hoopla Spotlight: Forrester Fills Summer Sales Pipeline with Prospecting Event!
In this new series at Hoopla, we’re spotlighting awesome techniques, events and competition that help organizations increase engagement, communication and results! Our rookie Q&A is brought to us with the help of Stratford Canning, Manager, Sales Development at Forrester. Stratford recently shared a sales competition he was running on LinkedIn, and we had to get more details.
Q: Let’s start with a bit more information on Forrester and your role there.
A: Forrester is a global Research and Advisory firm helping brands and technology vendors to become customer centric. My role is to lead the European Sales Development team, whose primary focus is booking new business meetings and establishing new relationships with prospects. I also work on new logo initiatives across Europe.
Q: How did you come up with the initial idea for the sales event? How did you define the scope and goal of the event?
A: As a region, we wanted to improve our meeting numbers and, in turn, the pipeline as we entered the summer months. This prospecting event was seen as a great way to drive the activity but also bring the regional sales teams together for a day. Six teams took part on the day covering most of the European region. The easiest way to measure results was net new meetings booked: they could not be with existing contacts. Due to the team sizes being different, it was based on the average meetings booked per rep. We used Hoopla to keep track of everyone’s progress and drive some competition during the day.
Q: Let’s talk about the day of the event. How did you structure it? Was there a set schedule? Breaks?
A: Everyone had advanced notice of the day so we were all well prepared with call lists and follow up list, along with a cleared calendar for the day. For some teams it was an early start, as managers bought breakfast and had a kick off meeting to hit the ground running. From 9 am to 12 pm teams were at their desks prospecting, at 12 pm we broke things up by having a teamwork exercise lead by the managers, then it was back to the desks to continue prospecting. The day finished at 3 pm. Afterwards, all of the teams went out for drinks to celebrate the winners. Every team had various prizes available not only for top performance but also for reps with the best attitude on the day.
Q: I saw in one of the responses (on LinkedIN) that you used Lego for the breakout session? Can you elaborate?
A: As mentioned earlier, we wanted the day to be more than just prospecting. This was also a chance to build team culture and collaboration. At 12 pm the two teams that were winning were given a set of random Lego that they had to build into a car as a team. The team that worked best together and created the best car won (judged by the managers and office leader). It was designed as a bit of fun to break up the day and keep the energy levels high.
Q: How did the teams react to the announcement of the competition? During the competition?
A: The teams were excited when we announced it, if a little nervous! Particularly my team as this is what they do! Everyone understood why we needed to have the day and the benefits of doing so and most the reps enjoyed doing something a little different. Plus there were plenty of prizes to be won!
Q: What were the results in numbers?
A: We booked well over 100 meetings during the day and the momentum continued for the remainder of the week. We are still measuring the pipeline created but at least $600,000 worth of opportunities were created so far.
Q: And the results on morale and employee engagement?
A: It had a huge impact on morale. It was a great reminder for some on how hard it is to book new meetings and for my team, they felt recognized and valued. It’s easy for reps to forget the challenges we face in sales development.
Q: How did the teams feel about the results in the end? Would you say the event was successful?
A: Everyone was happy with the overall results of the day and it was a huge boost to our monthly numbers. The activity also generated continued momentum for the rest of the week and month.
Q: Aside from Lego – what other tools did you use to make this run smoothly?
A: Hoopla was a critical factor in the day. Using the leaderboards across the offices to communicate the progress was so valuable. We also leveraged the head to head challenges to encourage some friendly competition between the teams and kick the energy levels up if we felt it was dipping.
Q: Is there anything that you didn’t get to do that you are planning to do in the future? Any changes you’d make?
A: Due to the success we are going to include more teams from the region so that every single sales team is represented. We are going to also explore how else we could measure the day and what metrics we want to focus on. We are also planning on exploring the other gamification options on Hoopla to drive more activity.
Want To Boost Your Sales? 3 Reasons You Should Be Watching March Madness This Year
For some of us, sports are everything. In fact, you’re probably picturing exactly the person in your office for whom that’s true right now. They’ve got their favorite team paraphernalia hanging on their cubicle, and you’re pretty set on avoiding them the day after their team loses—or wins for that matter.
But whether you’re a sports nut or not, team athletics maintain their rightful perch atop the mountain of great sales metaphors. There are few arenas of life more consistently inspiring than the throes of team-sport competition.
And sure, being inspired is great. But what if you could translate the lessons of our hoop dreams in to sales realities?
Well, we think it might be easily said and done. So with that in mind, we thought we’d share some of the core lessons that March Madness—one of sports’ greatest competitions—can legitimately give us to help boost real, meaningful sales numbers. Check ‘em out:
Gamification 101: Competition Makes Everyone Sharper
We talk about gamification a lot here on the Hoopla blog, because it’s something we believe makes all the difference in the world. There’s something deep inside of each of us that’s desperate to win—call it an evolutionary instinct, ego, or something else. But it’s there in all of us, and it’s not so tough to bring out of your team.
Just like the March Madness tournament brings out the best in college athletes, gamifying sales as if your team was in a tournament brings out the best in everyone involved. It gives them a clear goal, an awareness of their own performance, and a drive to come out on top.
Building Momentum: Shorter Cycles Can Generate Increased Sales
There’s nothing quite like do or die, is there? For March Madness teams, that means that every minute of every game counts—because it could mean the end of the road. The same is true in sales.
As Matthew Cook explains over on the Square 2 Marketing blog: “A shorter sales cycle means more time to generate additional leads. This will ultimately lead to an improved bottom line. A faster sales cycle can also become your competitive advantage. It will allow your company to increase market share and grow your business.”
When we impose this sort of mentality on ourselves, and impose shorter sales cycles at different times throughout the year, we can learn how to be way more efficient with our leads, increase our pipeline, and start closing deals as if everything was truly on the line.
Don’t Call It a Comeback: Underperformers Can Thrive
Few of us who’ve come back to the well of collegiate basketball fandom every year love anything more than the Cinderella story. They take all sorts of forms: from the Villanova teams of the 80s to the Florida Gulf Coast run of 2013. But we don’t have to look back even that far to find a truly great underdog story:
Just last year, The Loyola-Chicago Ramblers went from having never made to the tournament in 32 years of trying, to making it to the Final Four in their first appearance. What we can often get in the habit of thinking is that our consistent underperformers will always be just that. But nothing could be further from the truth. Remind your sales team that this week is a clean slate: as long as they’re willing to shrug off the haters, hunker down, and do the work that needs to be done, it’s anyone’s sales-championship to win.
Do Sales Motivation Games Work?
Sales Motivation Games, do they really work?
There’s no question that we humans are wired to be competitive. Long before even the days of the pantheon, mankind has always been creating new challenges, tackling new feats, and setting the bar just a little higher.
OK, setting it insanely higher.
And the truth is not all of us have the gusto to go out and do a solo trek across Antarctica. We don’t all wake up every day wanting to scale Everest. Sometimes, when you pile on the myriad challenges that our day to day lives already offer, rising to new challenges can seem a little… extra.
But that doesn’t mean that that innate energy can’t be tapped. In fact, a quick googling will show you that we humans are constantly rising to challenges that we didn’t even know were possible for us achieve—just think of the baby in Russia who was able to hang on for 35 hours while rescue teams searched him out.
Within each of us—within each member of your team—there’s a deeper desire to rise to the occasion. To face a new challenge head on, and absolutely crush it. Sometimes we just need someone to push us a little further.
Maybe life isn’t always all fun and games, but then again maybe some of the secrets to success lie there anyway?
Sales Gamification: Proof In The Numbers
Here at Hoopla we’ve done a number of case studies to see what sort of affect introducing gamification can have on a sales team’s production. One recent case study found that when a company displayed key performance metrics on a “leaderboard,” allowing sales reps to see where their current output landed them against other employees, there was an 850% increase in pipeline volume, and a 360% increase in sales system adoption.
Those numbers are huge.
It wasn’t about a company having a bad system that needed changing, or a product that couldn’t sell. In fact, the message should be simple: when you make goals tangible, and winning accessible, people raise their bars.
And gamification accomplishes all of that.
Finding Sales Motivation Games Your Team Will Actually Like
The beauty of having your own dynamic sales team is that everybody’s different. And while we might all have that sense of competitiveness tucked away within us somewhere, not everyone is going to readily access it in the same way. So it’s important that you don’t just start doing any random “sales game,” but instead find something that works for your team.
Whether that’s creating a leaderboard like the company from the case study did, or even incentivizing sales sprints with a casual Friday or a half-day-off, start this next week off by A/B testing some new creative ideas. Ask your team what sort of situations ignite their competitive spirit—or better yet, start handing out accolades for top performers, and see who puts in a little extra effort the next time around.
What you’ll find in all of it is that you have a group of competitors who are ready to surprise even themselves with just how much they can do.
Will the Warriors Make History Tonight or Are They Guaranteed to Lose?
Since we’re based here in Silicon Valley, we’re witnessing firsthand the Warriors mania that is happening right now. The Warriors are up 3 games to none in the NBA Finals and have a chance to win it all tonight. They have shown themselves to be a historically talented team and put themselves in this position by pulling off an impressive come from behind win in game 3 after dominating the first 2 games.
What are the odds they will pull off a sweep in the finals against a very good Cleveland team tonight? From a motivational psychology perspective, the answer depends on how the Warriors look at this game and, really, what they focus on. Will they play not to lose or will they play to win?
If they focus on the fact that they have a 3 game lead and they don’t want to be the first NBA team in history to lose a series after going up 3-0, they have a good chance of losing tonight. However, if they view this game as an opportunity to make history by becoming the first NBA team to ever sweep the playoffs by going 16-0, they have a good chance of winning tonight. How do we know that? Researchers Geir Jordet and Esther Hartman found in a study that athletes performed way better when they felt challenged to rise to the occasion rather than feeling threatened to not blow it.
In the study, Geir and Hartman analyzed all penalty shootouts ever from the World Cup, the European Championships, and the UEFA Champions league. They compared successful attempts to unsuccessful attempts and found that when players were shooting to win, they were successful 30% more often than when trying to protect a lead. Players protecting a lead and fearful of not blowing it had completely different body language than players that viewed the shot as a chance to take the lead. It all depended on their perspective.
In any situation, whether it be sports or in business, the simple practice of how you view a goal or competition can significantly increase your motivation and the possibility of accomplishment. Your performance will be much better by focusing on what you can gain by pushing harder and reaching further rather than what you can lose if you take risks. We’re just hoping that Kevin Durant’s motivation to make his 3-pointers tonight will be to make basketball history.
What March Madness Has Taught Us About Sales
What more appropriate metaphor is there in the sales world than sports? From Hoosiers to Creed, we’ve used the stories of sports elites to inspire us, to motivate us, and to teach us how to get up even after a bad break. So it comes as no surprise this time of year that a blog like ours might turn the spotlight over to the NCAA’s premier event: March Madness.
Sixty-four teams go in, one emerges a champion just a few short weeks later. It’s fast, it’s crazy, and there’s plenty we can learn from it about how we run our sales floors. Here are just a few of the lessons that March Madness has shared about what it’s like to be in Sales.
Stat Obsession Is Real
One quick perusal of FiveThirtyEight’s homepage will tell you this time of year is just as much about the numbers as it is the players on the court: live-updating rankings, win percentage, and analysis ad nauseum about what something like a triple double means for a player’s chances of moving on to the NBA.
So what does that mean for sales? Should we be creating stats sheets for every AE? Maybe not, but numbers do matter–even to the players. Studies like one by HBR reporting on an initiative by Cisco Systems show us that numbers can make a big difference when in the right hands: “The company created a site where managers could log in and see up-to-the-minute sales performance—listed by region, product line, and so on—all the way down to the level of individual account executives.
The site also contains data about reps’ pipelines, including the size of each opportunity, what kind of technology the customer requires, and who the competitors are.” This resulted in forecast accuracy plus or minus 1-2%. When sales reps were able to track their numbers, it helped them to to be better in touch with their performance, and make better business decisions.
Competition Isn’t A Bad Thing
Whether you went to one of these schools or not, you’re well aware of the gargantuan reputations dynasty teams like Duke, UCONN, and Villanova bring to the table. It’s not just their academics, but years of a reputation defined by competition that have made them athletic titans.
Competition isn’t just a reason to pit two teams against each other, competition is what makes us better: we are refined by challenge. So whether it’s selling against your top competitor or it’s some light-hearted intra-office faceoff for a spot on the top of the stack rankings, one thing is clear: competition helps us to be our best.
Don’t Count Out The Cinderella Story
And of course, while there are always the titans of industry who look to be the surefire winner, March Madness has always taught us that you shouldn’t discount the underdog. Whether it’s a team like Florida Gulf Coast that makes a movie-like run, or an upset like Michigan State’s loss to Middle Tennessee, the scores aren’t final until the last buzzer of the game. The Cinderella Story teaches us that even if you’re at the bottom of a leaderboard, it’s not the end. There’s always a chance to climb higher, do better, and make a place for yourself at the top. What the leaderboard shows us is not our permanent place, but rather where we can be and where we can go.
Sometimes it takes switching up your selling strategy or the way you approach a situation. When you find something that works, stick to it and go in strong. You’ll make a comeback that’ll even surprise yourself. Whether you’re in the middle of your own mad season, or you’re just looking for some renewed motivation, always remember: anything can happen.
How to Encourage Healthy Competition by Tracking Metrics
Salespeople are driven by the competition of the daily grind–the grind against their fellow reps as well as their own personal quotas. The nature of sales jobs set the standard of office contests, and most sales reps like the thrill of the chase and being the company hero. So, what better way to encourage healthy competition than to track metrics within sight? With the latest technology, it’s easy to do. Contests have long been staples for motivating sales and marketing professionals. But managers today understand the opportunity for team collaboration that sparks healthy competition. Running a sales contest is simple. It’s targeting the right goals and proper rewards where the difficulty lies. So, getting these basics right is key to sustaining your sales reps’ attention and engagement.
Gamification goes hand-in-hand with sales competitions. Using game elements encourages positive behaviors, so your team will take the actions you guide them toward. When you add fun to the mix, it makes doing work all the more worthwhile. What’s more – healthy competition, team-building, and individual development are all great by-products of effective gamification.
Tracking Metrics Visually
Publicly sharing real-time metrics office-wide drives your team to constantly improve themselves. When you see your name at the top of a leaderboard for a sales metric you’ve worked hard at, it feels good. Recognition, especially in real time, gives you the motivation to continue to better your performance. The same works for someone who’s not at the top of the leaderboard. This gives an individual the drive to work even harder to get up there and prove their abilities. Using a leaderboard gives your team the transparency needed to understand which metrics are performing best, and which metrics might need just a little more work. When you can see how your team is doing in real time, you can begin to nurture the positive behaviors and target any issues as they happen.
In an increasingly digital world, managers must fight the proverbial “fire with fire” and go digital as well. Using gamification boosts sales and drives engagement, working especially well when viewed digitally and shared publically. No rep will ever feel like they’re in the dark. Your sales team, as well as neighboring departments, can stay up-to-date on sales progress. To keep engagement levels high, experts say that not slapping rewards or badges on every small detail is important. Rather, focusing on the bigger picture is critical. But that doesn’t mean you can give the recognition your reps deserve when hitting a milestone. Allow healthy competition for its own sake on the smaller wins.
Healthy Benefits of Gamification
Oftentimes, winning isn’t even about the prize, but getting the recognition you deserve for the work you’ve put in. Gamification fosters increased collaboration, a sense of belonging, motivation – and of course – increased performance for in-house and remote workers alike. Global team members that haven’t met can get to know one another, compete, and cheer successes. That type of healthy competition is a definite win for everyone.
5 Ways to Use Gamification to Drive More Sales
It’s all fun and games until somebody loses a deal, right? But what if the fun and games were what drove the deals? Sales gamification is increasingly finding its way into sales departments and is the go-to method by which marketers, thought leaders, and even businesses are driving growth and productivity. You may have even been on the receiving end of it this morning with a gamified tip jar at your local coffee shop. We’re not saying you should pick up a PS4 for the break room (although, to each their own). Gamification is about integrating our basic human instincts into the engine of what’s already driving your business. Here are a few ways you can incorporate sales gamification to boost sales right in your own office today.
We are naturally competitive people—and even more so, your sales force is made up of some of the most competitive folks out there. Ever find it easier to push through that last set at the gym when a friend’s watching? Ever stay a little later at work because that top performer hasn’t left either? Consider the concept of a leaderboard right at the center of your office. You can integrate stack rankings that your AEs are obsessively checking already, and post them for everyone to view in real time. Someone just close a deal and move up a few spots? Looks like there’s a new top achiever to beat.
Data isn’t always as sexy as Silicon Valley makes it out to be. In fact, we can often get bogged down rummaging through a clunky CRM trying to find clues to measure our sales performance. But when you’ve got a platform sorting the data for you, you can begin to engage with your sales people in a meaningful way. Our platform, for example, leverages virtual newsflash messages to send encouraging notes to sales and even display company-wide messaging. It’s a quick and easy way to take a lot of numbers and turn them into a real, human interaction. And that positive reinforcement, saying, “We’re proud of your progress,” goes a long way in driving your people to be their best.
And on top of that, wins are something worth celebrating company-wide. So when you’re able to display someone’s picture or name after a big win, it’s an even bigger boost to their confidence as they keep smashing goals.
Sales Growth expert Dave Lavinsky points out that one of the most important metrics you can track to boost your numbers is “total sales by time period.” So what better way to do that than displaying goals, records, and even tracking progress week by week and month to month? Not only does progress tracking make straightforward goal setting that much easier, but it helps your sales force to immediately stack up their performance against the best—and worst—quarters. And that can be the key to helping them stay on track to break record after record, every month.
You surely have a system for feedback in place already. But is it effectively driving your salespeople to perform better, or is it just making them anxious for their next bad review? As Inc. points out, when low-performing salespeople use gamification to see how they match up in their strengths and weaknesses, it inspires them to seek out coaching. Nobody wants to stay stuck in last place, and when you provide them a roadmap to find the problems in their performance, that can be a key difference-maker in turning around a bad performance. No matter which avenue you take, even one simple method of sales gamification can be the fuel-injector you’ve been looking for on the sales floor. Give one a shot this week, and tell us how it went in the comments below!
What is Gamification? How Does Gamification Work?
Motivate and engage your team with gamification; utilizing challenges, leaderboards, and recognition to create a culture of winning. Sales is the backbone of your business. Your account executives are out on the front lines of your industry, acting as the ambassadors of your product—and every ounce of energy you’ve put into it. So when they win, you win. And that’s always worth celebrating. This is where gamification comes in.
What is Gamification?
Gamification by definition is using modern game mechanics to boost internal motivation to accomplish goals. Gamification is increasingly the go-to method by which marketers, thought leaders, and even businesses are driving growth and productivity. You may have even been on the receiving end of it this morning with a gamified tip jar at your local coffee shop.
Example of Gamification
Most commonly used, gamification is used in sales teams to boost motivation, which in turn boosts performance to increase sales. Gamification is used to amplify the competitive spirit between reps and engage them in a play-to-win culture. This takes the concept of social games that people are accustomed to and brings its benefits to the workplace. Similar to how online games and social networks work, gamification takes the process of selling and creates a game of it across your team. How are these game mechanics used in the workplace? Gamification is implemented through a KPI dashboard or as most know it, a leaderboard. Sales goals are broken down into metrics to be tracked on a publicly displayed leaderboard. By making the data available company-wide, reps are motivated to reach higher ranks on the leaderboard, thus working harder to boost performance.
Does gamification work?
Public displays on the leaderboard definitely drive external motivation, but people often question the concept of how gamification can boost performance in the long run. As reps view their progress (most beneficial when viewed in real time), they notice which metrics they’re hitting best and which ones need a little more work. This provides insight into which steps in the sales prospecting funnel they’re lacking progress in and what steps are needed to take to hit their #1 goal — a closed deal. The concept of gamification is to take short-term habits and turn them into long-term behaviors. As reps start to notice more where in the sales funnel they’re lacking progress, they’re more likely to put more time into improving their metrics for these activities. The visuals of the leaderboard help you become more aware of which activities you had been lacking drive in and motivates you to work toward your goal. So, the answer is: Yes, gamification does work — but! The stickiness of gamification, however, does rely on tracking the right metrics to reach your goals and recognition for when you succeed. What’s a game without winning and seeing your name in lights, right?
With gamification, motivation in the workplace is fueled consistently by reps who are grasping for a competitive advantage over their colleagues and getting recognized for their wins. Very much like a video game, accomplishing a sales goal is like getting to the finish line. And when you get to that finish line, you look forward to seeing your name swing up on that leaderboard and fanfare sounding for your win. This type of instant recognition creates the stickiness for gamification and engages us in the game of sales. As each goal or quota gets hit, leaderboards fed onto digital displays in real time offers reps a chance in the limelight. Whereas in the past, reps would quietly go about their days whenever closing a big deal or hitting that personal record they’d been trying forever to crush.
Interested in bringing gamification to your own team? Try it free for 14-days and start celebrating like it’s everybody’s business.
Why Gamification Will Drive Sales
Let’s face it, working in sales can feel monotonous at times, as with any job. Day after day of calls or visits to pitch the same product, employees may lose motivation or engagement with their company’s goals. In order to recommit team members to their work and goals in an industry where using more and more remote work taking place, many companies are turning to sales gamification to peak the interest of their teams.
Tap into the Sales Psyche
Salespeople tend to be extroverts motivated by helping others; they’re energized by people and enjoy a fast-paced environment. The ideal sales representative is an ESFJ on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator—they’re naturally comfortable around people, realistic, driven, and comfortable following rules. Given these characteristics, people working in sales are well-suited for a competitive, goal-oriented, and fun work environment. According to Gabe Zichermann, co-author of Gamification by Design, “gamification is 75 percent psychology and 25 percent technology.” So employers needn’t worry about their teams being the most technologically advanced in order to successfully introduce game-like tools in the workplace. By understanding the psychology of their extroverted teams, businesses can see increases in sales because gamification tools focus on motivating individuals to accomplish a specific thing, facilitating the user’s ability to carry out a task, and triggering users to meet their goals.
More Structure means More Sales
Extroverts thrive in environments where their accomplishments are acknowledged and appreciated. They are most successful when there are clearly stated objectives—much like athletes. Implementing an office leaderboard, for instance, allows employees to see in real time how well they’re doing compared to their colleagues and therefore work to overcome challenges in reaching their goals. For example, Conductor, a New York City-based SEO technology company, displays a leaderboard on TVs throughout their office. After implementing this tool, the business saw a 126 percent increase in annual sales.These leaderboards tap into the ambition of salespeople who are fueled by opportunity and objectivity. Similarly, should an office implement a system where a sound is made when an individual or team reach a goal, those who were not included in the accomplishment will recognize that each time they hear the sound and feel motivated to push past whatever roadblock to achieve. Consider Pavlov’s dog—the same application of sensory reception and psychology works in an office as well. A sound refocuses and reminds a person of the challenge at hand.
It’s Not Just a Game
But, according to Zichermann, gamification in the workplace is less about actual games than it is using the tools games give us to tap into the psychology of motivation and productivity. For instance, Target stores uses tools to capture speed and accuracy of its cashiers by simply employing a green and red light each time they scan an item—green meaning it was scanned in the proper amount of time and red if it was not. Target saw employee and customer satisfaction go up in what is a fairly stagnant role. And just as gamification is not intended to make work feel superfluous, there isn’t always a tangible prize at the end of each day as there would be in a game. Conductor CEO Seth Besmertnik explains, “The return for us is that we have a simpler, more functional way to recognize people more consistently.” Just as salespeople are extroverted and excited by competition, they’re also feelers whose decisions are rooted in values and emotion. Employing a tool of immediate recognition of a team and individual’s success will surely tap into the psyche of a salesperson making them happier and more confident in the workplace.