​Start Outperforming Your Competitors NOW: GameStorming and Company Transforming

So this is a small update on where we stand with the Gamification Academy and why we were so keen on sponsoring the Gamification Europe 2019 conference dinner.

I have been developing serious games and gamification systems since 2009 when I founded BrandNewGame. After a few years, I noticed that clients struggled with writing up a decent briefing for the development of a good gamification concept. This is logical in a way, because it’s not a daily or monthly routine for them. And since I don’t like to read through long briefings myself (with multiple unrealistic or even unachievable goals), I thought I had to come up with a ‘briefing-game’ that we still call ‘the GameStorm’… The mechanics in this workshop are very similar to the design of any game you can think of. Basically we help clients to describe their objective as SMART (Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic and Time-bound) as possible. Then we ask the six participants why it is so hard to achieve that goal. From all of their answers we select the three most dominant obstacles and then divide the group of six in two teams: destructors and constructors. After a brainstorm of about thirty minutes (we time every step using sand timers), we ask them to present the desired and undesired behavior, and we even calculate (score) the potential impact of that behavioral change. So… after four hours of playing with six people from client side we have a really good idea about the desired transformation, and we can then plan our next session: the GamePlay session. But I will leave it to this for now.

The reason being that this ‘originally meant to just be a’ briefing method now has become a transformation product in itself. The biggest sneaker and sportswear retail chain in Europe approached us in 2015 asking us to do the GameStorm with forty district managers. I was hesitant of doing this, because I developed it for six people in a room, not forty. But this particular vice president of sales called me the next morning (after reading my email I couldn’t do it) and said: “We are going to do it, because I already shared the information with our team. But I will coach you through it.” And so I did. The game was a great success and after a formal evaluation they asked me to execute the GameStorm with all 860 store managers in Europe… Now THAT was a challenge and an indication that maybe I should take this change method a bit more serious… So we developed an app that was able to log all the Post-its (data) from the sessions and I founded the Gamification Academy, so I could start training and licensing professionals in this way of working. You can compare the GameStorm to a ‘scrum’ way of working. We encourage companies now to play it each fiscal quarter to keep the change / improvement going and it works really well. Not only is it a great business model and easy to sell in tool. It also really helps organizations to ‘stay awake’ and increase their agility structurally. I wanted to break through the idea that change is a ‘project’ in organizations by providing a tool that enables them to ‘embed’ improvement in their organization and having fun while thinking about new ways to work…

So far we trained 24 professionals, that are now licensed ‘GameStorm Troopers’ (pun intended) and we have eight partners within the Gamification Academy that actively pursue new leads in order to widen our scope and create more demand.

We are actively reaching out to people in other countries to embrace the GameStorm as a tool to improve the briefing process or to help clients to transform challenges into change in a fun and functional way! So on November 1st (2019) and February 20th (2020), we do a training in The Netherlands for people that want to become a licensed and authorized reseller.

More information can be found in our Meetup Group or on EventBrite (search for Gamification Academy and you will find us) or - of course - through:

brandnewgame.com and gamificationacademy.com