Gamification takes the essence of games — attributes such as fun, play, transparency, design and competition — and applies these to a range of real-world processes inside an organization, including learning & development.

Gamification may be a new term to you but no doubt you have seen it or even experienced it.  In short, gamification is the use of incentives to stimulate desired behavior.  In this example, a technology company uses a point system to encourage their employees to exercise.  Khan Academy uses badges to reward learning.  The more you read on Google News the higher level badge you earn.

But does it work?  According to this post, Deloitte Consulting applied gamification principles to its Deloitte Leadership Academy and saw participation increase by 37%.

What can you do to incorporate gamification into your training program?  This post identifies five principles.

  1. Challenge
  2. Recognition
  3. Tracking
  4. Competition
  5. Cooperation

Each of these has to be tied to an incentive, such as points or badges, that reward and recognize desired behavior and motivate continued participation.

Searching for gamification will yield more information than you can possibly process. Below are some links to get you started.

How to Use Gamification for Better Business Results
The Principles of Gamification