Decide your role – player, coach, manager, sponsor or referee

When it comes to a running a gamified performance management (GPM) program it’s important you have a clear picture of your role. This will determine the tone of voice you use when communicating with players and the amount of flexibility you offer in the scorekeeping program.

The roles you can take are as follows:

  • Manager – this is the typical role organisers of a GPM program see for themselves. Typically the program they design is all about achieving a collective objective – drive more revenue for the business for example – and the scorekeeping  is all geared towards that aim.
  • Coach – the coach organises scorekeeping from the perspective of the player. The program is designed for the player to reach their own goals through tracking and optimisation of performance. The coach is helping the player keep count, provide encouragement and perhaps a few pointers along the way.
  • Fellow Player – here you are simply a fellow player who is tasked by your peers with keeping the score for everyone. While in reality you are something of a player/manager or player/coach, the notion of fellow player can give the right feel. There is certainly nothing to stop one member of a team from creating a GPM program for everyone to benefit from as I’ve done with the Gamification Gurus Power 100, a board I both play on and manage.
  • Referee – the referee takes a step back from the action: they neither have an interest in the performance of the individual or the collective output of the team. They are simply there to ensure a level playing field and the rules of the game are observed. We most often see this role being played by conference organisers who are not active participants in the market themselves.
  • Sponsor – the most removed of all the possible managerial roles. The sponsor simply provides the financial backing to run the scorekeeping program and any associated costs. In return they benefit from brand association with the players, the program itself and ideally see their brand promoted to the wider audience of spectators.

So there we have it, the 5 roles you can take when running a GPM program.

Which you choose will depend on your own context and objectives, the important thing is to know which you are and plan your message accordingly.

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