To exist and survive comfortably so that we may be able do the things that we enjoy most in life, we must occasionally adjust our attitudes and perspectives in order to achieve. Competitive business markets demand technological innovations. Corporations today demand process improvements so that they may grow and stay afloat. The times have changed since some of us wrote our first program on a Commodore VIC-20. It was a time when being called a geek was an insult, instead of a compliment.
The paradigm has shifted a great deal since those early days of the PC and the Internet. We never imagined that electronic media would become what it is today. History has proven that those who move willingly in the direction of change will be successful, and those who do not, will fail. Now we are moving towards incredible new thinking that suggests using gamification as a way to do our daily business tasks. Work will be more self-satisfying and fun, and why shouldn’t it be?
Maybe the idea that work is not fun started with the Great Depression? The economy suffered, many were jobless, and people were stricken with fear and panic. Who wouldn’t be? For some years to come, after the stock market crash in 1937, people had to fight for jobs. Competing for employment meant busting your back, working long and hard hours. It was not a time in history when people were smiling on the way to work. A concept like Emotional intelligence could not have possibly even been conceived in a society that had been devastated by their recent history of financial hardships. Today, we are much more fortunate.
Jane McGonigal’s concept of gamification sounds crazy until you actually hear her talk about it. Then it makes perfect sense. She tells us that it will engage end users and make them feel more productive. She justifies the need to gamify intelligently and convincingly. The faces on the photos of the gamers in her presentation alone are enough to make one realize that she must be onto something brilliant. The faces posted here are pretty encouraging as well. It is a new way to get things done using positive stress, as she suggests. We’ll feel excitement and satisfaction. Yes, at work! This is not our grandparent’s workplace anymore. Today, we are privieiged to do what we do while being surrounded with such great people. Sure the long hours and the pressure aren’t always fun, but it could be a whole lot worse!
By the way, Guinness World Records online lists the most people in a thumb wrestling chain at 310 people. They say it was achieved by Enjoy-Work at Chiswick Park, London, UK on 3 June 2011….I demand a recount!