How to apply game theory to Enterprise 2.0
In John Hopson’s article Behavioral Game Design he shares the basic ways people react to different patterns of rewards. He ends the article with this: “Each contingency is an arrangement of time, activity, and reward, and there are an infinite number of ways these elements can be combined to produce the pattern of activity you want from your players.”
Understanding these patterns of rewards along with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (below) and applying them to the design of an Enterprise 2.0 solution can improve success by increasing the adoption rate. This will also help the organization realize the return on investment (ROI) sooner, than later. The Organization’s ROI will reflect how well the platform matches users with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. These needs can be met in various ways, but let’s take a look at a few easy ways to improve the desired pattern of activity.
Profiles of Members on Enterprise 2.0 Platforms
- Add a “date field” for the updated date. Display “recently updated profiles” list on the profiles dashboard. Members update their profile and they are instantly rewarded by being included on this list.
- Add a “date field for the last viewed date. Display “recently viewed profiles” list on the profiles dashboard. Members engage others on the platform, which leads to profile views and they are instantly rewarded by being included on this list. This behavior also leads members to completing profile details. Members that see their “last viewed date” is old can steps to become more engaged.
- Add a “int field” to store the count of profile views. Display “most viewed profiles” list on the profiles dashboard. Members are engaged in various activities within the platform, which increases profile views and they are instantly rewarded by being included on this list. This behavior also leads members to completing profile details. Other less engaged members can review high count profiles for clues on improving their own profile and status.
- Display a limited “profile recently viewed by” list in member’s profile. The limit works with time, while the list surfaces activity. This encourages connections. Members studying other members are rewarded by being included on this list.
- Display “recent activity stream with dates” in member’s profile. This encourages activity across the platform. Active members are rewarded with full activity streams within a window of time. This also helps other members discover information and connect with others.
- Add two “int fields” to store the profile point counts. Members should be awarded virtual cash for increasing the value of the Enterprise 2.0 Platform. One field stores the grand total. The other can be reset at will by the platform managers to support metrics in windows of time, which can be used for contests. Members earn virtual cash by completing activities on the platform. The algorithm for activity value is set by the platform managers. Activity value is determined by the goals and purpose of the platform. A simple activity value algorithm could look like this: login=100, login before noon=500, page views=100, rate an item=250, create an article=5,000, create two article in one day=10,000 + bonus 5,000, upload an item=2,000, add a comment=1,000, viewing a profile=500, your article viewed = 100, member rates your article=500, member comments on your article=1,000,… The value of the activity should relate to the member’s effort and value added to the platform’s community. Members can choose to spend their virtual cash on drawings for real world prizes. You can also feature their story on the platform, they can write about the benefits of the platform.
These are just a few ideas on adding that “addictive property” to an Enterprise 2.0 Platform. These simple ideas will also help platform managers identify key players to consult with on future updates. Remember rewards don’t always need to be cash, just take a look at FourSquare
Game Theory Resources
- The Psychology Behind Games
- Evolutionary Game Theory
- Behavioral Game Design
- 5 Creepy Ways Video Games Are Trying to Get You Addicted
- Picking Your Guildies: The Role of Attraction, Selection, and Attrition
- A dictionary of video game theory
- Fun is Fine Toward a Philosophy of Game Design
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory in psychology, proposed by Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper A Theory of Human Motivation. Most of these needs are met by popular games and should be supported in Enterprise 2.0 platforms to ensure rapid adoption and success.
Mind-Blowing Thoughts on Games by Jesse Schell
Carnegie Mellon University Professor, Jesse Schell, dives into a world of game development which will emerge from the popular “Facebook Games” era.
Example of changing behavior by design
Do you doubt human behavior can change by design? You may want to take a look at the video: Piano stairs – TheFunTheory.com They believe that the easiest way to change people’s behavior for the better is by making it fun to do. This is a FUNdamental understanding behind game theory, “FUN”.