In 2015 100s of HR professionals were asked a simple question in a survey… in one word describe…GAMIFICATION
Participants were invited from the CIPD Members LinkedIn group, the CIPD communities, and the CIPD Facebook group. 613 participated. Of those, over 70% have been in HR for more than 11 years.
Not all questions were mandatory
The demographics for this were:
Processing of one word data.
During data analysis, spellings were corrected, and capitalisation resolved. No words were merged with the exceptions of the “whats” & Unknowns..
Responses to the one word survey
- Play 12%
- Learning 11%
- Fun 8%
- Informal 7%
- Engagement 4%
- Fad 2%
- Jargon 2%
- Engaging 1%
- Innovation 1%
- Solving 1%
- Unknown 13%
Now the results of this survey question did stop me in my tracks. I can accept the fact that this had more people miss the question than any other, 22 people skipped this, providing us with 596 responses. Of those some 13% were “unusable”
Gamification is one of the fastest growing forms of business psychology. It is especially related to engagement and motivation, and yet very few respondents seem to understand that.
The sad thing for me is the significant number of people that think gamification is “play” or informal. True gamification is anything but this!
Gamification is a new form of psychology into the HR and change management space. Whilst it as an approach has been around for 100s of years, it is only the last 10 years that gamification has started to become accessible within business in a non frivolous way.
It seems that many in L&D & HR are making generalisations and massive assumptions that gamification is about “games” or play, and the PROVEN psychological research in this area is being completely ignored. It is disappointing that a profession like HR which needs to be innovative seems to be putting unnecessary barriers up to what could be low cost strategies to better engagement a #1 priority are to believe the HR journals and thinkers.
Other words used more than once included:
accessible, alternative, assessment, building, buzzword, competition, creative, creativity, development, different, dummed-down, effective, engage, engagement, engaging, enjoyment, experiential, fad, fun, future, game, games, gimmick, informal, informality, innovation, interactive, interesting, involvement, jargon, learn, learning, motivation, new, on, participation, patronising, play, playtime, practical, problem, relaxed, simulation, solving, strategy, team, technique, technology, thinking, tool, trend, trendy, waste
Words used only once include:
active, activity, age, application, assimilating, assisting, authenticity, balance, basics, boring, brain, brainstorming, business, challenge, challenging, change, clever, competitive, competitiveness, computers, confused, connect, consultant, controversial, corporate, current, demystify, desperation, developing, difference, differentiation, discovery, diversion, doing, dumb, dumbing, eating, elearning, embedding, energy, enjoyable, enlivening, error, experiencing, experimental, fake, fitness, focus, funny, funtivity, futuristic, gobbledegook, hands, head, honing, hype, ideas, immersive, inappropriate, inclusive, incoherent, infantilisation, information, innovate, innovative, inspiring, intriguing, intuitive, involve, jobs, joy, knowledge, lateral, leverage, line, losing, male, manipulation, measure, mechanistic, memorable, messing, methodology, millennials, misunderstood, modern, modernisation, motivational, niche, non, nonsense, novel, opetition, over, overused, performance, pheasant, playing, pleasurable, politics, pompous, positive, practice, progress, proofing, provocation, radiation, real, refreshing, reinvention, relevant, resource, reward, rewarding, roi, role, rubbish, seduction, seedy, silly, software, solutions, speak, specialised, specialist, stealth, stimulant, story, strategic, strength, systems, tactics, technological, techy, telling, testing, thought, thru, time, together, transformative, trial, trivialisation, ugly, uncertain, unconvinced, understanding, underused, unexplored, unfamiliar, unimportant, unnecessary, unreal, unserious, virtual, visualisation, wasting, winding.
I have highlighted a few words which show the respondents have not researched this approach and are making massive assumptions.
Not just blanks…
many respondents rather than just leave the question blank submitted as below. This seems to show another level of miunderstanding:
|Dont understand what this word means|
|Need a thesaurus for this word|
|No idea – never heard this term – it sounds awful!|
|Not known to me|
In the survey results above I classified these as “unknown”!!