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Welcome to the world of “gamification”

There is a lot that business can learn from the gaming industry and the floodgates are about to open. Make sure you watch this amazing trend!

Being an avid gamer myself, I’m very excited about how gaming is moving from play into work.  This fall, Cisco took our worldwide sales conference from an event where we used to fly 20,000 people into Vegas to hosting it online.  This virtual environment was a great place for us to use video, web sharing, badges and quizzes to inspire, collaborate and teach.

In this video, I join Stanford University communications professor Byron Reeves and Mary Jo Kim, CEO of “Shufflebrain”, to discuss this exciting new world of gaming.  Here is the video.

“Mixing work and play”

I also want to share this week’s Wall Street Journal piece about “mixing work and play.”  Can you really play on the job?  The article describes what is happening in some large companies like IBM and Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd.

Many of the same motivations and tactics used in your kid’s Xbox game are being used in management training, data entry and just plain old brainstorming.  Show up for a meeting on time or complete an assignment?  You get a badge.

I also think Jane McGonigal, who directs game R&D at the Institute for the Future, had some great things to say at a TED talk recently. She discusses how gaming can solve some of the world’s biggest problems.  Worth the time to watch!

@kindlevixen: “TED: Gaming to make the world a better place http://t.co/wXziZJE

Here is Jane’s site if you want more information on what she is doing.  Her book is visionary and worth the read.

Find out why games make us better and how they can change the world. Order your copy of the New York Times bestselling book Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World now. Get the book from an indie bookseller!

Looking for a book to get you thinking on gaming ideas for your own workplace?   Byron Reeves’ book “Total Engagement” is fantastic and gives you a lot of great ideas if you are implementing or designing a game for work.  I learned a lot from reading it and from spending time with him.

I also want to share with you two of my blogs – written in 2009 -- describing Cisco’s experience with gaming and alternate reality. Now two years later, I’m happy to see other companies being so engaged in this new trend!  As always, I’d love your feedback.

Cisco Gets Real with Alternate Reality Games: As I promised in my blog last week, here’s a closer look at the alternate reality game (ARG) that was developed for the Cisco Global Sales Meeting. I give you a chance at the end of my blog to experience for yourself what it’s like to play the game.

Gaming Your Virtual Event: Games and the inclusion of them during a virtual event has been a hot topic as of late. The main questions I see being asked is when do you include games and what types of game do you include to support a virtual event.

Always remember that rule number one about being a “Tech Nowist” is that you have to embrace change.  Gaming will change business and this is a trend you need to start watching, learning and doing your own experiments in order to be able to leverage.

Enjoy …gaming is fun!

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