Last week I had the good fortune to attend Mario Herger’s Gamification workshop. Mario Herger is an SAP employee belonging to the Technology Strategy team. Before sharing a couple of interesting insights and experiences from the workshop I will share my understanding of Gamification and what it means in the software industry.
Each software that was created (one might hope:)) following a need communicated by the product. A software can be the most ingenious piece of code ever created, but if nobody is using it, it’s not worth anything. Gamification is that fun twist that motivates a user of software to make an action as part of a game/challenge.
At the workshop Mario explained the rationale behind Gamification and gave us a task to find a need and to think of a Gamification solution for it. My group thought of a software that will motivate diabetics to inject the needed doses of Insulin in order to maintain a healthy life routine. We thought of a couple of ideas of gamifying it. My idea was to create a Tamaguchi™ (simulated electronic pet) that each time the patient injects Insulin , the electronic pet is fed and grows. In cases where the patients don’t make the needed injections, the Tamaguchi™ dies.
This workshop made me reminisce about how I implemented Gamification as a teenager. When I was studying for my final high school exams, I needed to sit for hours in front of the computer. As a hyperactive kid, that was quite a challenge. My solution was that each time I accomplished studying 30 minutes straight, I treated myself with 5 minutes of playing my favorite strategy game. I have a first degree, so that trick probably worked:).
After attending this workshop I started to think how we could gamify different aspects of our professional life without “gaming” the system. I would be glad to hear your ideas in the comments section below.