How can sales gamification improve performance?

How productive is your office? And how do you improve employee performance? There are a lot of theories out there. But, the general consensus says you can improve sales by making sure:

  • your employees are happier and satisfied
  • the overall process is transparent
  • communication is clear
  • minimal time is wasted
  • regular training

Sales gamification covers all these bases.

Employee satisfaction

To understand how this works, you must understand the links between happiness, productivity, and gamification.

Step 1 – The power of happiness

Satisfied employees do better work. According to Forbes, they are 20 percent more productive. And employee happiness increases sales by 37 percent. So, there’s no arguing the value of ensuring your team is happy to come to work.

Traditionally, the solution has been to push bosses and managers to compliment employees on their work. Along with other policies pushing positive reinforcement in the workplace. However, it’s easy for this message to get lost in the hectic day to day operations. And most companies simply end up handing out large bonuses as prizes. But while that gives employees something to work towards, it doesn’t ensure satisfaction or happiness, affecting their overall performance.

Step 2 – Gamification is a useful tool

Gamification is a modern solution to this problem. This is a strategy many learning tools like Duolingo use, where users get points, trophies, and awards for completing tasks. So, you start by setting up an app. Then you assign tasks and to-do lists. You can also put up messages on the bulletin boards, run team projects, and set tasks.

Step 3 – Happiness to productivity

When employees complete a task, they get the satisfaction of crossing it off the list and the emotional gratification that comes from getting reward points. Over time you can raise your score, cross levels, and win prizes.

The strategy basically takes video game philosophy and applies it to a work environment. And it works! Recent polls show that 48 percent of employees feel gamification makes them engage with their work, while 72 percent claim it motivates them to work harder. So, gamification makes employees happy and motivated, which improves their performance.

Transparency in the workplace

Openness and transparency are vital in the workplace. The fewer the barriers between the employees and management, the more trust there is. The result is an open space where all members feel free to share ideas and engage in discussion. Employees are happier and more invested in their work. As a result, both their performance and productivity increases.

Also, transparency within the company translates into customer relations. Polls show two-thirds of buyers are willing to spend more money on a transparent company, while 94 percent state transparency is the leading cause of brand loyalty. But, all this is easier said than done.

Gamification helps businesses establish transparency. To begin with, everyone is on an equal playing field. Not to mention, all the points and data are out in the open. But, it goes a lot deeper than that. When you have sales people on a task-based point system, they receive constant feedback for their work in real-time. This helps them identify weaker areas and improve, instead of being unaware and feeling slighted at performance review time.

Additionally, by setting KPIs, short term tasks, and long term goals, you ensure that your entire team is on the same page. By setting up a same design, and making the gamification results transparent, you decreasing the chance of toxicity within the team. Since the rules are same for every, nobody can really complain.

You can also start discussion boards where sales employees can discuss ideas or problems.

Communication in the workplace

If you want to see concrete results in efficiency and performance, you need clear communication. So, what happens when things aren’t clear, and there is miscommunication? The most common time this occurs is during feedback.

How a manager gives criticism, and employees receive it are two very different things. If there is no transparency, they will assume you are belittling their work. This, in turn, creates tension in the office, impacts happiness, and affects performance.

By using the gamification tools, you remove all the barriers restricting clear communication. Additionally, you can give direct feedback to specific employees when they finish tasks. This allows them to understand and adapt their work according to your vision on every step instead of submitting a final product you dislike.

Minimal time is wasted

One of the biggest reasons employees are inefficient is because of wasted time. This doesn’t mean employees are lazy or purposefully wasting time. In fact, quite the opposite. The natural set up of an office allows a lot of wastage. This includes pointless memos, emails, meetings, and reviews that distract your employees from their tasks. How can they make sales if they are too busy reading through a dozen forwarded emails?

Through the gamification platform, all that wasted time is capitalized on. Overall, the tools streamline your company’s work, tasks, and feedback, removing any excess. Your employees know exactly what their daily tasks are and can move their way down the list instead of first deciphering a bunch of memos.

Regular training

If you want to improve company performance, you need to train your employees. What normally happens is you send your workers on a course or seminar, which’s the end of that. But, you never test them. Or measure improvement.

That’s where the gamification strategy comes in. You have to use it the right way. Don’t give your employees points for making the most sales. Keep rewards or trophies for that. Use the point system to test them on the qualities that lead to sales. This will push them to become better salespeople. So, you can use the app to train them to be better and test their progress regularly.

Bottom Line

Overall, gamification has a lot of benefits. It definitely improves individual performance by ensuring employee satisfaction. It also changes the overall office set up by improving transparency and communication. Both of these factors result in a massive increase in performance overall.

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About the Author:

Matt Bullock
Serial entrepreneur who loves a deep dive into technology and applying it to solve business problems. Matt recognized that gamification of business activity processes would lead to greater staff engagement, increase productivity and motivate the team to do more, so that businesses sell more and grow more.