I’m attending the Gartner PCC conference this week in Orlando, Florida. After a day of rain yesterday, its nice to catch a glimpse of the sun before plunging into the windowless conference rooms this morning.
The opening session featured speakers Whit Andrews, Carol Rozwell, Nick Jones, and Gavin Tay.
Whit Andrews led off proposing that we are now seeing a nexus of technology combining that has the power to make work fun and engaging. An analogy to games is now becoming universal as shown by the common term gamification.
Andrews made his analogy using the game MindCraft. While I’m not much of a game player, Andrews shows why this game represents the nexus of technology – where these elements come together:
- Mobile – can play on various devices, but the MindCraft world easily transports from device to device
- Cloud – what you pay for in MindCraft is the ID. You can play anywhere on any computer because it lives in the cloud. Any world within the cloud takes on characteristics of what you want, not necessarily what others want you to see.
- Social – friends share the same worlds plus the friends then share tips, experiences and strategies. Rules are not in the game, but developed through your contacts in the game.
- Information – Mindcraft incorporates information such as a WIKI where you go to learn the game – there is no manual. There are also videos on the game, etc.
Carol Rozwell continued the theme of using gaming techniques to engage the workforce. Her theme was that happiness is a key driver of employee performance. She quotes Shawn Achor’s book, The Happiness Advantage, by saying there is a direct correlation between hapiness and every business performance measure.
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Rozwell also quotes research performed by David Rock, who has identified five attributes in his model from Your Brain at Work:
When one of these attributes are negatively affected, you brain starts to shut down. When you see positives in these attributes, you become happy and motivated. Connectedness is also important. When a person gets excluded from a group, they experience the same brain patterns as a person in pain.
For socially a enabled business, we need socially-conscious leadership, opt-in work practices and recognition. Businesses need to stop focusing on preventing access to Facebook, etc. Start looking at how to encourage connectedness across the enterprise and make work fun.
Nick Jones spoke about how to make work fun. It can’t be fun if I’m forced to use outdated tools. When you look at trades people, they bring their own tools with them – their own saws, hammers, etc. For a knowledge worker, they should be able to do the same.
Where do the tools come from that people would bring if they could? They would come from consumerization:
- Business apps that cost lots less than the big guys.
- Tablets, mobile devices, and smaller laptops
- Apps that the IT dept doesn’t have the time or resources to build
How to architect an empowered entperprise (and happy too!)?
- Allow people to bring their own technology to the workplace
- Embrace open markets and ecosystems
- Standardize on data formats and APIs, not tools
- For licenses focus on people not devices
- Embrace new mgmt. ideas and principles – like bring your own IT to work
Gavin Tay spoke about globalization of your workforce and how we need to create a culturally adaptive environment.
Now its time to catch a few minutes of sun before the next session starts.