GameStorm solved problems

Did you know our GameStorm method solves problems? And not only that – it generates actionable ideas that lead to great achievements, executed by the very same professionals that worked on them! How much more engagement do you need than moving people in directions they feel is the right way? We have been experiencing great results since the introduction of the GameStorm in 2011. And the cool part is, we can anonymously share some great ideas on some generic challenges that clients (organizations) might face.

Take employee involvement and training in retail for instance. One of our retail clients described their objective in 2014 as follows: “Implement effective hr tactics in order to have flexible use of our employees”. The challenges that retailers face and various teams defined during the GameStorm session where (amongst others):

  1. Coordination of training during the day time work
  2. Helping other employees to level up their game
  3. Finding the right people for the right positions you have to fill

Now these challenges are not unique. As a matter a fact, we faced the same challenges when I used to work as a Channel Marketing Manager for Diesel. But these days, these challenges have a much bigger impact on your business playground and – in the end – your P&L than in 2010. It’s do or die these days…

(Destructive) Behavior that was chosen and proven to keep these challenges alive are (amongst others):

  • No pep talks [on challenge 1]
  • No relationship with the team mates [on challenge 1]
  • Not taking time to develop people, in other words: rushing the training [on challenge 1]

Possibly due to the digital era we live in, even in a store, people do not build up a relation anymore (point 2), neither do they do motivational speeches or ‘pep-talks’ to inspire and stimulate each other. Especially in difficult times it can be highly effective to discuss the elephant in the room, give it a name and cut it in pieces (not literally of course). Because not talking about the elephant in the room will not scare it away – acting up will! And as for the third action: not taking time to develop people, I have a brilliant comment I once read. The CFO says: “What if we develop our employees and they leave our company…?” CEO says: “What if we don’t develop them and they will stay working in our organization?!” If you want to become (or remain) a game changer on your playground these days you have to continuously invest in your human capital. If you don’t you have already lost the battle from online webshops like Ali Baba, Amazon and others. But fortunately for us, the GameStorm also let’s you look on the positive side, defining constructive behavior to overcome the chosen challenges.

Ways to overcome this challenge (Coordination of training during day time work), that were chosen during the GameStorm session were:

  • Use active feedback to improve your training every session over and over again
  • Let your experts (in-store) lead training sessions 1 on 1
  • Write don a game plan for the day or week, within to do’s: who gets his training at what time on which priorities

I cannot stress it enough and I have done that in my most recent book, but there is only 1 way (really just one), to improve over and over again and it is: feedback. The way players learn in games is thanks to feedback. Take the game Pac-Man. You are a yellow guy, eating cookies in a maze. The more cookies you eat, the more points you get (feedback) and the cookies disappear (feedback). If you eat a ‘special’ cooky (inspired by the Dutch I presume), recognizable because of the flickering (feedback), you can eat the ghosts that hunt you. Their colour changes (feedback) as soon as you eat a special cooky. If you kill a ghost, they change into flickering eyes and you see a score (200, 400, 800, 1600 – all feedback)… Need I continue to explain how important feedback is in games? The same goes for real-life… Humans can only improve by giving feedback, but we are really bad at giving motivational feedback. This is why we developed a game for that in 2016 for a big red mobile phone carrier (project to be disclosed soon). What I learned about giving feedback is: be authentic, be critically honest and always end positive with a plan of actions to be taken. For all I care: use the GameStorm structure! In a (really tiny) nutshell: What can we agree upon that you will do in the future, what did you do that did not work (in my opinion), what are you planning on improving in the future (or which suggestions do I have for you), so we can progress…?

A lot of retail organizations are afraid to ‘waste time’ on training, but the people in your store are the only – and I repeat the only – relevant discriminating factor for consumers these days that can persuade us into buying things – apart from great design (which plays with our sub-conscious). It is the people in your store that can make a difference. Not the product, not the price, not the place (location, location, location = web these days – wake up!), nor your promotional (mostly bull shit – and we recognize it) ad-campaign…
It is people and their actions that influence me in buying or leaving. And actually I strongly believe you cannot sell products to people, you have to let people decide to buy…

So don’t book a ticket to our GameStorm Trooper Training, we are not selling this product, you can only buy into it… 😉 More information can be found here should you be interested…

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Bart Hufen about Gamification during TedX Hilversum

This is my talk about the power of play and unlocking creativity to solve problems versus using the game-loop for routine to become better. Feedback is welcome through Twitter @BartHufen #gamification

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Progress Loop presentation in Sarajevo

In 2015 I was invited to speak during Bosnia Agile Day in Sarajevo. It was a wonderful experience and I got to test the vision I have on using ‘game thinking’ in a company-wide perspective. The model in my new book ‘Playing on the job’ (due in 2017) is called the Progress-Loop and will be explained in the presentation below. Enjoy and share it on Twitter #gamification. If you have any questions about it, send me a tweet @barthufen

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Gamification of Business

On October 17th 2015, I was invited to give a presentation about gamification of businesses and organizations. Particularly I disclosed the essence of my new book “Playing on the Job” (out in 2016 I hope) – my main model – the ‘Loop of Progress’. The idea of the ‘Loop of Progress’ is that you identify which concurrent processes lead to synergie in your organization and create multi-disciplinairy teams to take part in those processes, rather than letting departments do that. Inspired from FarmVille – I started rethinking business processes and business models, from understanding the gameloop and other game mechanics and applying them to your daily business. In this presentation I explain our GameStorm tool – that we use to develop our serious games and help to start making a change in organizations like the City of Amsterdam, Foot Locker Europe and Vodafone. And – of course – I elaborate on the ‘Loop of Progress’…

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One Gamification & Two Serious Game projects LIVE!

I apoligize to people that visit my blog regularly… I have been so busy in the past three months that I did not have time to write new posts…

First of all I am working on a new book called ‘Playing on the Job’ – which will be about using games as a way to make work more fun and effective for employees.

Secondly I am working on a new method of brainstorming, called ‘GameStorm’ (for now)… Check the screenshot. It starts with ‘setting the challenge’ in 1 of the 4 quadrants and then starting with 4/5 people to define actions that people need to start or stop doing to achieve the set challenge, but also define activities that people currently do that are neither productive or destructive (mostly routine work). This way you can eliminate processes and ‘work’ that actually has no effect on the set challenge and optimization of profit… More about the GameStorm later…

Upcoming Monday, we (me and my many partners) will launch three projects.

1. MT Challenge – a gamification tool that improves the chance that students (freshmen) achieve all points in their first year of college

2. Serious Game to train people on a new product (a knowledge game)

3. Serious Game to train staff to listen better to their customers

So all-in-all I have been quite busy… Also I finally achieved the ‘brandnewgame.com’ url – so chances are that this address and my email will change somewhere end of this year… It will also spare me from spam I hope… 😉

For now… check out the screens and I hope I can tell you more about my book, the GameStorm and the results of the projects I mentioned above within two months…

Game On!

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Transformers in Germany

Check out this HUGE Transformer in Germany – Kassel.

Of course I beat the crap out of him that night…

There is also a great ‘Castle’ and ‘Fortress’ on a mountain there… check the short film below…


 

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'Laat met je merk spelen' bijna uitverkocht!

>Just to be disruptive a Dutch subject title today. It says: ‘A Brand New Playground’ almost sold out!

Of course I am referring to the Dutch version of my book. The first edition almost sold 1.500 copies so far in 15 months time. According to my publisher Kluwer this is good result for a book in such a niche-market that was written for Marketing Managers of which there are maybe 10.000 in The Netherlands. So I already sold my book to 10% of the market potential, which is excellent penetration! There are about 300 copies left, so if you want to get a hold of your copy of the ‘eerste druk‘ (first release), order it here: www.bol.com or here www.managementboek.nl It – generally – is rated with 4 out of 5 stars – so don’t take my word for it. If you send me a picture of yourself reading the book I will even hand sign it for you (Dutch residents only ;-)!

This is a Dutch review of the book in 2010 by Management Boek.nl
This is a Dutch review of the book in 2010 by Max Kohnstam:

The English version is still available for free through www.brandnewplayground.com

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On Vacation Until 22-9-11

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Hi guys & girls,

I will not be posting any stuff the following three weeks on my weblog.

However – feel free to follow me on Twitter, where I will post the news I read on the internet about games, gamification, gamevertising and social gaming.

I am enjoying a long trip to Bali, the Gili islands and Lombok, because I always wanted to go there and I just LOVE Indonesian food…

Should you ever visit The Netherlands, please visit restaurant Djakarta in Utrecht. The place itself doesn’t look al that good, but the food is fabulous!

Okay, enough – non gaming talk – check the map if you like to see where I will be going and be sure to be back from 22-9-11…

Bart

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Laat met je merk spelen te koop in Kluwer Shop! [Dutch only sorry]

>Vandaag een mooi artikel over Gamification in het Parool. Daarom even een doorverwijzing naar de verkooppunten waar mijn boek verkrijgbaar is.

Mijn boek ‘Laat met je merk spelen’ is te koop via Bol.com, Managementboek.nl en de Kluwer Webshop. Uiteraard ligt het ook bij Selexyz en de betere boekhandels.

De gratis samenvatting kun je HIER downloaden (rechtsboven op ‘demo’ klikken).

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SORRY! – Less posts than usual…

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Just wanted to apologize for a second for not posting so many new articles lately.

We are happy to say that we’re awfully busy with some great projects for some of our clients.

I am still busy posting interesting news, research and opinions on Twitter, so please feel free to follow my tweets @BartHufen

Topics I tweet about are #gamification #gamevertising #brandnewplayground (my upcoming book)  #gameresearch and more…

Hopefully we will have more time towards beginning of may – so stay tuned!

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