How to Make Work Fun

Imagine 5-year-old Cinderella. Cinderella hates basketball, but you have to make her better or you die. What in the whole wide world do you do?


You start thinking about some management concepts you read in some business book you read.

  1. So, you try motivating her: "Hey Cinderella! You can do it!"
  2. You try bribing her with gifts: "I'll give you cookies if you practice!"
  3. You try putting fear into her: "I'm going to tell on YOU!"

But, Cinderella doesn't budge; she still finds basketball boring.

You're about to die. What do you do?

The Trick

Make it a game, then keep score.

  • "Cinderella, I'm going to time you for 1-minute to see how many shots you can make."
  • When that's done, "Cinderella, I'm going to time you for another minute to see how many shots you can make."
  • Repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat.

A more motivated Cinderella starts trying to beat her high scores every time. Quickly:

  • You get her more engaged.
  • You increase her confidence.
  • You make her internally motivated to amplify her skills.

Games addict peeps because peeps try to beat their high scores every time they play.

What Makes Anything Fun

You can design the crappiest-of-the-crappiest game on the crappiest world; but, that-don't-matter.

Introduce a high scoreboard; then BAM: the game automatically becomes FUN.

You can work on the crappiest-of-the-crappiest-of-the-crappiest tasks in the whole wide world; but, as soon as you keep track of a high scores list, you instantly make your tasks for you/your-team super-duper-fun.

Fun = Work + Scoreboard

For instance:

  1. "How many sales calls can you make in 1 hour?"
  2. "How many customer tasks can you complete in 10 minutes?"
  3. "How many minutes can you deploy a client's application?"
  4. "How fast can you deliver a customer order?"
  5. "How fast can you develop X?"
  6. CHOOSE YOUR OWN HERE ---> ___________. YAY! YAY!

Then install a scoreboard tracking high scores somewhere prominently in your office; you/your-team starts striving to beat the scores each and every time you play.


The Steps:

  1. Define tasks that you do repeatedly.
  2. Make a 'High Scores List' for those tasks.
  3. Play!

You start becoming more engaged, more productive, and having a 9870958709458794056 times more fun.


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Posted on October 12

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