December 30, 2022

What Gamification Can Do For Your Workforce

Restaurant employees enjoy break.

Something we hope many will be able to relate to: the Axial Shift team got caught in the international futbol/soccer frenzy. While playful and competitive in nature, we created World Cup Pool to encourage everyone to participate in something with a shared goal, and allowed us to celebrate the different approaches each person took to achieve it.

Those participating included everyone from the fundamentalist soccer fanatics looking to see if “the cup was coming home” all the way to the other side of the spectrum, those picking their victors based on jersey colors or intensity of mascot mobilization. The palpable camaraderie cultivated by the enthusiasm and engagement of the pool was universal with soccer talk permeating the day to day. 

This is the fundamental idea behind gamification: integrating games or game-like incentives into everyday activities. The result is that simple, daily duties can be made more fun, engaging, and rewarding. 

While only lasting a few weeks, there were many positive outcomes from the shared World Cup Pool experience.

– These conversations open the opportunity to break down walls between leadership and front-lines. This environment is one where other personalities have an opportunity to shine and the renewed investment and interest in the games themselves lead to fun banter and reciprocal support when your/their team loses. Becoming enthralled with the spirit of the game, when the underdog, Morocco, far exceeding any expectations was worth being part of that journey, even if it meant the bracket took a substantial hit.

– The incentives spurred higher engagement, deeper conversations, and shared experiences than just watching and chatting. These deeper conversations spread the excitement outside of Axial by talking to others about the brackets, the tournament, and outstanding performances. 

– Utilizing the momentum growing from the gamification of the World Cup Pool we can turn to real-world implementation of the same concepts. Whether the incentives be built into sales contests, positive reviews, or overall sales can create the same open, casual conversation environment that was organic within the World Cup Pool. A few ways to add gamification to the day to day would be:

  1. Who can sell the most margaritas in a shift
  2. Who can add the most appetizers to orders throughout a shift
  3. Who can upsell the most desserts throughout a week

All of these would continue to add the fun banter, reciprocal support, and renewed investment/interest to our environment that prospered during the World Cup Pool.  

Now our team is closer than before, having been united behind a common purpose and focusing on the same thing. The growing feelings of camaraderie and enthusiasm created a culture of invested, fun, team members who were energized to participate and will continue to carry that enthusiasm into their day to day work. 

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