The other night I went to a great presentation sponsored by SAP highlighting the work of Barbara Annis's new book, Same Words, Different Language. In her book, she identifies women as more naturally collaborative and men as more naturally competitive.
Years ago, while studying Organizational Change, I was drawn to study gender differences in the workplace. Fast forward to today and my interests have shifted to Social Gaming in the workplace. Specifically, Social gaming that trains behavior in internal/external B2B Social Networks and then applies this to behavior to enhance business collaboration. Barbara's discussion led me to investigate gender differences in Social Gaming and how those differences apply to game design in work settings.
Flurry did an interesting study in the area of Gender Differences in Gaming. The full discussion can be found here http://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/study-mobile-social-games-attract-young-college-educated-women/. Essentially the study found that women are active gamers as well as men.
The question for me, designing games for B2B social engagements is how to create games that drive more collaboration. The key ingredients of collaborative games are ones that encourage cross participation, identify complimentary capabilities, strengthen relationships, are scalable, and fun! My experience has taught me that Collaborative games in the Social workplace need to utilize day-to-day tools empowered through social collaboration. I find the best games emphasize currently used tasks and strategic capabilities.
My ah-ha moment these past few days has been to create games that generate collaboration while using more cross-behavior learning. Hopefully this will also create cross-over where we enhance collaborative skills in more competitive gamers (men according to Barbara Annis) and enhance competitive skills in more collaborative gamers (women according to Barbara).
Noreen Poli is product manager and consultant at Ready, Set, Go Social! Her projects range from award winning methodologies to end-to-end mobile gamified applications. Her background in product management is enhanced by experience in user research, analytics, human behavior, and social giving her a unique skill-set custom made for this era of realtime analytics and personalized products.