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How Gamification Can Engage Employees and Change Attitudes About Training

Gamification is more than just tapping away on a smart phone, hoping to achieve a new level or gain more points. It’s also a way to spice up training in order to better engage employees and increase learning of content covered. Gamification is also a great way to switch things up from the typical learning model of present information and test on that presented information.

Gamification does so much more than this. It hits the learners on a deeper level and engages them with a specific focus on an intended behavior change. It’s why training is often redesigned, because it didn’t produce the initial intended results.

At Allen Communication, we’ve implemented thoughtful gamification into several courses for clients across many different industries. One example comes from our work with a major business services company, in which we were able to use gamification elements to redesign some of their major training elements.

The Reframe Game

The company’s overall goal was to showcase examples of what great work was. From this, our ultimate goal was to develop games that communicated a story, which inspired the Reframe Game. It started with learners selecting certain responses to different workplace situations. Each response the learner made would show the potential influence it made on others around them.

Using Reframing in the Workplace

The Reframe Game used information from the book Great Work by David Sturt, and the intended goal from the game was getting employees to reframe how they thought about their roles in the work place. We took principles from the book and transferred them into interactive elements in the game.

This is gamification at its core – engaging employees by having them interact with their learning.

Elements of the Reframe Game

The game starts by presenting the learner with a grid of monochromatic figures. Next, the learner introduces color to the people by making positive or negative decisions. With this interactive visual aid, learners get a better sense of the impact that their decisions have on others. Through this engagement, the learner gets the big picture view of their day-to-day decisions.

The Reframe Game brings it all together by helping employees understand how their actions and attitudes can affect others. It starts out by demonstrating how a small shift with how they approach their job can influence others. This is followed by instructions on how they will get a chance to reframe other job roles and try to get as many positive responses as possible. The game concludes with the learners answering a reframing question on their job responsibilities with the intent to get them to think about it in a different, more productive way.

Effects of Gamification

Instead of just doing the same old info dump on the learners with some graphics here and there, gamification engages them on a deeper level, and therefore increases the chances of employees’ retention rate and behavior change.

It’s much better to provide your learners with the interactive elements of gamification, rather than just dropping info and some graphics in the hopes that they will learn and apply something new to their job role.

In the end, gamification makes the training much more fun and active, instead of passive and boring. We believe that gamification plus training materials equals measurable results, such as specific behavior changes with your employees.