Idea: Game Mechanics for Businesses

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In my last post I talked about how I would openly share some of my ideas. This is one of those half-baked ideas and like all of my ideas, it was cobbled together from a number of conversations I’ve had with a number of people.

Over the past year and in very infrequent intervals, I’ve been thinking about how a system could be created that would incent people to do things with non-monetary incentives, while at the same time, surfacing the creativity out of people all within a corporate setting. I’ve been thinking about how cool it would be if you could create a system that fundamentally changed the way corporate america works. A system that could change the internal processes, the reward systems, the compensations and the bonuses of business cultures, that from what I hear, simply suck. And I’m interested to see if this can all be done using game mechanics.

It’s been proven already that people do things when they feel a sense of reward and “sense” doesn’t necessarily mean dollars. Just look at all the people starting projects or donating to projects on Kickstarter. Look at all the people freely answering questions on Quora or StackOverflow. Look at all the people that build, and spend money on, ridiculous virtual items to build virtual farms in Farmville.

A common theme here is the use of non-monetary rewards systems. Game mechanics to influence a certain behavior.

So my thinking is, why can’t this same approach be used to influence certain behaviors in the corporate setting? Freeing the minds from the cubes and adding a healthy dynamic to the work at hand. Extracting the creativity and entrepreneurship out of everyone using some new rewards system. A new type of integrated consulting.

Am I on to something or should I go play Farmville?

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