Gamification can take many forms, from high-tech mobile apps, to augmented reality, to simple team-building games. When thoughtfully planned out, it has the power to transform your event into a fun and engaging experience with a high return on investment that also delivers the ultimate goal for an event professional: happy attendees and stakeholders.
Many event professionals and stakeholders wonder whether gamification is effective at achieving event goals. The short answer: yes. To make sure gamification is optimally used at your next corporate event, here are three things to consider:
The Type of Event
The term “gamification” refers broadly to the practice of adding game elements and principles into nongame contexts. For this reason, gamification is a great addition to corporate events as it is highly engaging for teams and individuals, drives collaboration and morale, and of course, adds a dose of friendly competition that engages many people. More specifically, there are a few types of corporate events that will greatly benefit from the addition of gamified elements. These include:
- Sales Meetings – Busy salespeople who are competitive by nature may find gamification to be a particularly unique and engaging way to learn a skill and build deeper relationships with their colleagues.
- Leadership Offsites – When leaders come together to work on big ideas, gamification can lighten the mood, encourage teamwork, and add a dose of fun to an otherwise content-heavy agenda.
- Team-Building Events – Getting teams working together to solve a challenge, then tying it back to the workplace, is a particularly effective use of gamification and will greatly improve the effectiveness of team-building events.
The Event Objective
There are some corporate event goals and objectives that lend themselves particularly well to gamification, including teamwork, problem solving, and innovation. To ensure that the activities or components you choose to gamify will be as successful as possible, consider how the outcomes of the activities align with the objectives of the event.
For example, take Eagle’s Flight’s flagship experiential team-building activity, which challenges teams to work together to successfully cross a metaphorical desert and return safely back again, while competing against the other teams. This type of activity serves several purposes: improving teamwork, working through problems, and thinking strategically about how to win. These games aren’t just fun, they also provide real-life lessons and skills that attendees can immediately apply back on the job.
By employing gamification to not only engage attendees, but to also achieve the corporate event objectives, you are well on your way to ensuring your gamification strategies are effective for both attendees and stakeholders.
One of the myths of event gamification is that it is a big-ticket item that event professionals can only consider when working with large corporate event budgets. While making sure that gamification is effective and aligned with event goals definitely takes some investment, if you plan your resources strategically, you will be able to gamify your next event effectively. The extent to which you gamify your event may fluctuate based on the budget you have available, but if you can manage the expectations about what is possible with your stakeholders, everyone involved will be pleasantly surprised at how effective gamification can be.
Gamification is not just a way to make your corporate event agenda more fun – it can be a unique way to bring home the key messages, and build useful skills among your attendees. When it’s done effectively, gamification helps attendees to feel fully immersed in the event experience, while passing on tired tactics that attendees expect, like speakers, icebreakers, magicians, or comedians. If you are thinking about adding gamification to an upcoming corporate event, take the time to consider the components in this article so you can make a plan to effectively and successfully gamify your event.