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Luke Jamieson

Say G'day to Luke at www.LukeJamieson.live

Melbourne, Australia

Luke is one of the top 25 global influencers and thought leaders on customer experience and employee engagement. His rebellious, unconventional approaches have been attributed to him earning such titles. But it’s his combination of vision, high energy, audacious creativity and mischievous execution that makes him an inspiring and refreshing keynote speaker, podcaster and blogger.

Featured in numerous publications including The Wall Street Journal and The Australian. He studied design thinking at D.school, Stanford University and is a certified LEGO® Serious Play® facilitator.

Available For: Advising, Authoring, Influencing, Speaking
Travels From: Victoria, Australia
Speaking Topics: Employee Engagement, Future of Work, Gamification, Innovation, Lego Serious Play

Speaking Fee $5,000 (In-Person)

Luke Jamieson Points
Academic 0
Author 133
Influencer 137
Speaker 91
Entrepreneur 125
Total 486

Points based upon Thinkers360 patent-pending algorithm.

Thought Leader Profile

Portfolio Mix

Company Information

Company Type: Company

Areas of Expertise

AI 30.17
Business Strategy 31.27
Change Management 30.04
COVID19 32.31
Culture 37.74
Customer Experience 49.27
Customer Loyalty 30.77
Design Thinking 35.48
Diversity and Inclusion 31.87
Emerging Technology 31.04
Entrepreneurship
Future of Work 45.90
HR
Innovation 31.57
Leadership 32.35
Management 30.36
Marketing
Mental Health 33.57
Social
Startups 32.01
Health and Wellness 31.75
SportsTech 34.35

Industry Experience

Automotive
Financial Services & Banking
Higher Education & Research
Hospitality
Professional Services
Retail
Telecommunications

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Publications

3 Advisory Board Memberships
Advisory Board Member
BibVault
July 27, 2022
BibVault empowers the world to lead an active lifestyle and rewards common people for their active lifestyle activities by connecting them with local businesses, event organisers and Industry experts.

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Tags: Health and Wellness, SportsTech, Startups

ACXPA Advisory Board
ACXPA
March 17, 2022
Australian Customer Experience Professionals Association (ACXPA) represents contact centres, customer service, digital experience and customer experience across all industry sectors

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Leadership

NewAccess for Small Business - Beyond Blue
Beyond Blue
June 07, 2021
NewAccess for Small Business seeks support to support the mental health and wellbeing of small business owners and to prevent the deterioration of symptoms to the point that higher intensity support may be required. While Beyond Blue has extensive experience delivering NewAccess, this represents the first national telehealth service and the first support service tailored to the mental health of small business owners.
As a result, Beyond Blue has committed to working closely with the small business community in the
establishment and implementation of this service.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Mental Health

22 Article/Blogs
Operations Leaders - How’s the Monkey on Your Back?
Centrical
November 03, 2022
Operations managers know that feeling all too well of having a monkey (or 10!) on their backs.

The stories are all the same—customer queues are getting longer, and service agents keep running into challenges. Many of them just feel like they’re better off taking over and saying the magic words, ‘leave it with me.’

And as operational managers take over service calls and front-line customer support, other important parts of their roles are left to the wayside.

This leads to manager burnout, which increased significantly over the course of the pandemic.

As we all know, burnout is not good. So, how can we fix this? How can managers shake the monkeys off their backs, lose the dead weight of menial tasks, and get back to what’s important?

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Has AI Gone Too Far? Balancing Efficiency with the Human Experience for Positive EX
Centrical
October 03, 2022
Has AI Gone Too Far? Or is balancing efficiency with the human experience the key to a positive employee experience?

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Evolved Employee Experience Strategy That Impacts Customers in a Positive Way
Centrical
September 28, 2022
Think about the last time you had a great customer service experience. The person who helped you went above and beyond to make sure you were happy. They probably smiled, were friendly, and seemed genuinely interested in helping you. Now think about the last time you had a terrible customer service experience. The person who helped you was probably rude, unhelpful, and made you feel like your problem wasn’t important.
Now, take that a step further: how do you think that employee felt about their job? | READ ON:

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Using Gamification to Maximise Employee Engagement
ACXPA
September 19, 2022
Gamification is an exciting opportunity to build innovation in our workplaces.

Play as a learning tool works for a number of reasons:

Play suspends us from reality by creating a fun and unique environment.
Play allows our minds to be open to being creative and trying things differently.
Play engages more of our senses and bodies, not just our minds.
Play taps into intrinsic motivators, which are more effective than extrinsic motivators.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

What's the story with Gamification
Centrical
August 19, 2022
For gamification to be great, it needs to be sustainable, effective, and engaging. Nothing ticks all those criteria better than a good old-fashioned story

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Dichotomy of Contact Centers
Centrical
August 17, 2022
Customer experience (CX) focused companies are three times more profitable than those that don’t focus on CX. And yet, contact centers are still considered entry-level roles and can be the lowest paid in a company!

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Turn Cancel Culture into a Coaching Culture
Centrical
July 13, 2022
Coaching should be central to business operations - it supports talent acquisition and retention, boosts employee engagement, and even improves customer service.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Why Are We Still Overworking?
Centrical
July 11, 2022
There is significant data and increasing awareness about employee engagement and job satisfaction—we know that overworking and burnout are not good. Despite this, employees are reporting some of the highest levels of burnout on record.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

A new blueprint for the radical leap ahead
Centrical
June 22, 2022
Taking the Leap to SUCCESS in 2022

Every big leap takes the right timing, careful planning, intention, a clear goal, and focus. And there are many influences at play that ensure a “successful landing.” Yet there is an immediate imperative to execute this leap as the world of work rapidly evolves. So, drawing from the amazing speakers at Centrical’s Success 2022, I thought I would share the insights I gleaned from the people who have already taken “the leap” and witnessed first-hand the impact it’s having on addressing the issues of retention, motivation, and growth.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Rare Breeds: Why We Should Embrace Difference to Boost Employee Engagement
Centrical
June 21, 2022
Rare breeds are the future of organizations. In an ever-changing world, we need people who are going to challenge the status quo and shake things up a little.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Learning Gets a Facelift with Edutainment
Centrical
May 25, 2022
Millions of pieces of content are put out on the internet every day, but how much of it has a real influence? And what’s the secret ingredient to making impactful content?

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Future is Hybrid
LinkedIn
April 26, 2022
This week’s EX Rated article has two very special guest contributors! I recently had two great conversations with Elliot Debinski and Tim Buzza around working from home (WFH) and returning to the office.

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Tags: Leadership, Culture, Future of Work

GUEST POST: THE INTERSECTION OF ENGAGEMENT AND PRODUCTIVITY
Shep Hyken
April 24, 2022
This week, we feature an article by Luke Jamieson, Regional Director at Centrical, the next-gen employee engagement and performance platform. He writes about the importance of engagement and employee experience to an organization’s productivity to business success.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Employees have to come MORE first
Centrical
April 21, 2022
Companies often like to say that the customer comes first. They care about the needs of their customers and clients, working to provide products and services that fit their needs. Companies talk about the actions they take, or how they’re innovating and building creative solutions.

But who’s the “they”? Who’s actually doing the work to put customers first? It’s the employees.

For that reason, customers might come first, but employees have to come more first.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Maximizing Employee Engagement: Creating Value, Learning from CX, and Boosting Community Chemicals
Centrical
April 07, 2022
We talked with Nate Brown on a recent episode of the BOOST! podcast. Nate is the Senior Director of Customer Experience at Arise Virtual Solutions. He’s also the co-founder of the CX Accelerator Community. He’s full of enthusiasm for creating community and providing the best CX (customer experience) and EX possible.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Diversity and Inclusion

Social Contract or Employee Contract
Luke Jamieson
February 01, 2022
As we try, yet again to emerge from the latest wave of the pandemic and attempt to establish new routines and ways of working, many employees are raising conversations about the previously unspoken. I'm taking about the social contract. In this article we explore why "social contract" is back on the lips of employees in 2022. #employeeengagement

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Tags: Customer Experience, Culture, Future of Work

The Intersection of Engagement and Productivity
Centrical
November 22, 2021
Engagement and productivity are uttered almost daily in the business community. Most people understand they are related, but mistakenly think that the road between engagement and productivity is linear. In fact, they are part of a complex, interconnected web. Leaders and organizations that care about the performance of their companies need to care about engagement and employee experience (EX). They cannot focus single-mindedly on productivity without addressing the underlying factors. Leaders need to zoom out and look at the bigger picture that connects engagement to productivity to business success.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Do Super funds have a case of “Keeping up with the Jones'”?
The Evolved Group
June 17, 2021
In a recent survey by The Evolved Group, 67% of you voted that you don't feel you have a good understanding of the upcoming changes to the superannuation guarantee rate. This could lead to a flurry of enquiries from concerned members to their super funds - but how prepared are they? This made me reflect upon my 10+ years in the superannuation, CX space and in particular my perspective on CX technology adoption in the industry and how Superfund Listening is challenging the status quo.

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Emerging Technology

Gamification - A Misunderstood Science
PLAYFULLi
October 22, 2020
Gamification is still a mostly untapped and misunderstood science. For over a decade it has had much scepticism and hype with hit and miss success, however as the craft matures and is understood at a deeper level it is now starting to become a sustainable alternative to traditional ways of measuring and engaging employees from both a learning and performance perspective.

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Tags: Innovation, Management, Leadership, Future of Work

Connecting from Home Through Gamification
LinkedIn
May 08, 2020
Let me be the 7th billionth person to state the obvious…the Coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented and has changed the nature of how we work, for the foreseeable future.
Most of our workplaces have done a tremendous job in ensuring we have the technological resources we need to keep us connected to our respective workplace responsibilities. But now we have a new challenge. Unfortunately, staying motivated and focused can be incredibly challenging during this time.

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Tags: Business Strategy, COVID19

Our top 5 to making work from home more playful
Luke Jamieson / Playfulli
March 30, 2020
Our top 5 tips to making work from home more playful

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Tags: Customer Experience, Leadership

Brainstorming and Innovation… in the Palm of Your Hands
Playfulli
March 11, 2020
Are you tired of sitting at work and hitting a behemoth-sized wall when you’re trying to brainstorm ideas?

It’s time to connect your mind to the world and with the rest of your body. It’s time to start thinking with your hands.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Innovation

1 Board Membership
Board Member
Essence Theatre productions
August 01, 2022
Essence Theatre Productions Limited is a not-for profit independent theatre company based in Wyndham.
They seek out original Australian stories from diverse backgrounds and bring them to life through live performance.

Targeting the outer West of Melbourne, they work with all age groups aiming to give communities and individuals opportunities for training and experience in performing arts to help them become the next generation of theatre makers.

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Tags: Business Strategy, Customer Experience, Leadership

1 eBook
Build a Better Customer Experience
Panviva
February 01, 2020
Build a Better Customer Experience-Tips from 10 CX Industry Experts ebook to gain insight from
leading influencers and innovators in the customer experience (CX) field. Each contributing author has shared
his or her tried and true secrets for building that rare combination of happy agents and loyal customers that
we all want our organizations to champion.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

1 Founder
Playfulli
Playfulli
September 01, 2020
Founder of Playfulli - A leading gamification, customer experience and employee engagement advisory. Specialising in using play to define purpose and help organisations with strategy, innovation and performance as well as understanding what motivates and engages employees.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

1 Industry Award
Top 150 Global Customer Experience Thought Leaders and Influencers of 2020
Survey Sensum
July 15, 2020
Here is a list of top 150 Global Customer Experience Thought Leaders and Influencers who have taken Customer Experience to the whole new level. They have not only brought new perspectives on the table but have redefined the customer experience exceptionally!

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Tags: Customer Experience

1 Industry Council Member
CSIA Judge 2021
CSIA
August 10, 2021
The Australian Services Excellence Awards (ASEAs) are Australia’s premier customer service awards program, attracting hundreds of nominations each year and culminating with attendees coming together each year at the ASEAs Gala Dinner to recognise best practice, performance and innovation in customer service, highlighting their importance in today’s business climate.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Customer Loyalty

13 Influencer Awards
Top 100 Global Thought Leaders on Technology to Follow in 2022
The Awards Magazine
September 20, 2022
The Awards Magazines Top Top 100 Global Thought Leaders on Technology to Follow in 2022

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Tags: Future of Work

engatica's top 100 powerlist
Engatica
May 23, 2022
THE BRIGHTEST LIST OF THE TOP 100 LUMINARIES IN TECHNOLOGY AND BUSINESS

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Tags: Customer Experience

Top 25 Thought Leader Customer Experience
Thinkers 360
January 31, 2022
The holder of this credential participated actively in building their profile, portfolio and media kit on Thinkers360 and successfully placed within the Top 25 thought leaders and influencers in this category based on their personally-authored content, awards and recognition. Thinkers360 takes a holistic view of thought leaders and experts, beyond their social media activity, and looks across all their personas – such as academic, advisor, analyst, author, consultant, entrepreneur, executive, influencer and speaker – and all the types of thought leadership content they produce.

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Tags: Customer Experience

Top 25 Thought Leader - Future of Work
Thinkers 360
January 31, 2022
The holder of this credential participated actively in building their profile, portfolio and media kit on Thinkers360 and successfully placed within the Top 25 thought leaders and influencers in this category based on their personally-authored content, awards and recognition. Thinkers360 takes a holistic view of thought leaders and experts, beyond their social media activity, and looks across all their personas – such as academic, advisor, analyst, author, consultant, entrepreneur, executive, influencer and speaker – and all the types of thought leadership content they produce.

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Tags: Future of Work

200 most powerful influencers to follow in 2022
Engati
January 24, 2022
Meet the 200 luminaries who have taken these worlds by storm and have created a community like no other.

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Tags: Customer Experience

Top 100 CX thought Leader for 2021
Survey2Connect
October 15, 2021
Survey2Connect selected their choice for the top 100 CX thought leaders around the globe - Here is the list:

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Tags: Customer Experience

Thinkers 360 Top 25 Thought Leader - Mental Health
Thinkers 360
August 10, 2021

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Tags: Mental Health

Top 200 Thought leaders to follow in 2021
Engati CX
December 21, 2020
Whether you’re looking for inspiration, or you’re interested in getting fantastic insights on the latest Customer Experience and Artificial Intelligence trends. Meet the 200 luminaries who have taken these worlds by storm and have created a community like no other.

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Tags: Customer Experience

Engati CX's Top 14 Experts Dec 2020
Engati
December 03, 2020

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Tags: Customer Experience

Thinkers 360 Top 50 Thought Leader - Future of Work
Thinkers 360
December 01, 2020

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Tags: Future of Work

Top 150 Global Customer Experience Thought Leaders and Influencers of 2020
Survey Sensum
July 17, 2020
Here is a list of 150 Global Customer Experience Thought Leaders and Influencers who have taken Customer Experience to the whole new level. They have not only brought new perspectives on the table but have redefined the customer experience exceptionally!

The below-given list is a general list and is irrespective of any ranking or order. All the Thought Leaders present in this list have significantly impacted the Customer Experience Domain in their own way.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Innovation, Leadership, Future of Work

Global Top 25 CX Influencer - Panviva
Pavnviva
May 25, 2020
Top 25 Customer Experience Influencers to Follow. As a leading company in the customer experience space, Panviva is committed to surrounding ourselves with other experts in the field. For the second year, we have identified a list of the top CX thought leaders in the industry. As you read this list, you will extract insights, tips, and strategies to use as your customer service compass on your journey to becoming customer centric.

Panviva received many submissions of qualified and fantastic candidates and it was not easy to narrow down this list. This year, we’ve included more female and global influencers to better reflect our mission to provide stellar CX to industries worldwide.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Innovation, Leadership

Top 20 Gamification Gurus - Rise Global Power 100
Rise Global
May 04, 2020
Rise Global track the most influential people to follow on topics you care about using real time data from Twitter and Kred.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Innovation, Leadership

7 Keynotes
Verint Engage - APAC - The intersection of Engagement and Performance
Verint
September 01, 2022
Join our partner Centrical as they explore the connection between employee engagement and performance. This is not a linear journey, it is a complex network of virtuous cycles that interweave. We invite you to “tap on” this engaging commute through the burrows of EX, CX and business success whilst being mindful of the onboarding gap. Hear how local and global brands have leveraged gamification and micro-learning to solve for a seamless journey.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Own Your Future: Unlock People Potential at Scale
Centrical
June 07, 2022
Rebuild the Future of Work
Join us on June 7th for SUCCESS 2022, a free, must attend virtual event for professionals and leaders in CX, Sales Operations and Performance, Contact and Service Center, Learning and Development, and HR.

Discover how leaders of tomorrow will take a bold leap today to drive the highest level of performance by engaging and inspiring every single employee to reach their greatest potential.

You will gain real best practices from Centrical customers and experts on topics like the employee experience (EX) and customer experience (CX) relationship, reducing attrition, and augmented coaching. You can also expect an inspiring keynote, product vision, demos, and thought leadership.

#CentricalSuccess22

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Is your EX Magic or just an Illusion?
The Customer Show Australia
May 06, 2022

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Intersection of Engagement and Productivity
Forefront Events
February 14, 2022
We often this of the connection between employee engagement and productivity as a lineal connection, however it's actually part of a complex network of virtuous cycles.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Turn Play into a Plan
Newcastle and Central Coast CX Network
September 01, 2020

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

NEWCASTLE & CENTRALCOAST CX NETWORK
CX NETWORK
August 25, 2020
NEWCASTLE & CENTRALCOAST
CX NETWORK
Join us via Zoom for an inspiring presentation + Q&A with one of Australia's
most influential CX & EX Thought Leaders, Luke Jamieson of PLAYFULLi

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Virtual Engagement Symposium
AIST
July 22, 2020

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

18 Media Interviews
Creating Frontline Success
CSIA
November 09, 2022
Luke Jamieson talks to the CSIA about how real-time performance management, gamification, micro-learning and coaching can be a game-changer for creating a great employee experience to support a positive customer experience.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

What Is Gamification, and How Can It Create True Engagement?; with Luke Jamieson
6 Star Business
May 03, 2022
Today’s episode brought us the wisdom and insightful genius of Luke Jamieson, on a topic that impacts us all and is even more relevant in our current ‘Great Resignation’ climate. He is a warm, caring human with a long history connecting him to raising engagement and enjoyment for employees. I’m really grateful for his insights today, as we find ourselves moving through more change and evolution in a post-pandemic world.

He gives us a view of employee engagement as it’s evolved from it’s inception as a ‘core driver’ and focus for organisations, through to today.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Culture, Future of Work

Luke Jamieson | Unlocking the power of intrinsic motivation
The Agile Contact Centre
April 13, 2022
We Interview the one and only Luke Jamieson on his leadership journey and the employee experience era.

Luke's passion is clear... an engaged employee is one who's motivation for working aligns to the purpose of the organisation and has the autonomy to express themselves through the work they do.

He also talks about this amazing innovation ... the intersection of technology and social science for good (for once!) to boost the employee experience.

We chat about purpose, meaning, Harry Styles and cattle droving, its wild ride!

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Leadership

Play is a Serious Business, Work is Serious Play
Apple Podcasts
August 11, 2021
In this episode, Luke tells us about his experience using gamification and play to increase employee enjoyment and deliver far greater impact and success.

Luke Jamieson is the founder and CEO of PLAYFULLi. Named in the Top Global CX and EX thought leaders by Survey Sensum, Panviva, Thinkers360, Rise Global and Engati CX and has been featured in many publications including the Wall Street Journal for his thoughts on employee engagement, motivation and purpose. He’s a certified LEGO Serious Play facilitator and has studied design thinking at D.school at Stanford. He is an expert in helping organisations use play to define purpose, increase employee experience, support diversity, foster positive cultures, and deliver on sustainable progress. His approaches have attracted many coveted awards and his enthusiasm for CX and EX has helped shape some of Australia’s largest organisations customer and employee experience programs.

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Tags: Management, Leadership, Future of Work

Centrical Chooses Victoria for APAC HQ
The Australian
May 27, 2021
The company is landing Down Under in a bid to help employers keep their workers engaged through gamification software.

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Tags: Future of Work, Innovation

Employee engagement and performance management vendor Centrical is expanding into the APAC region with the opening of its Australian headquarters in Melbourne's CBD
ITWIRE
May 27, 2021
The Australian office is to be headed by Centrical regional director Luke Jamieson, who has been named one of the globe's top CX influencers and thought leaders by Panviva, Engati CX, Thinkers 360 and Survey Sensum.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

US/Israeli HR tech company sets up APAC HQ in Melbourne
Technology Decisions
May 27, 2021
Centrical, a US/Israeli AI-powered employment management platform that combines advanced gamification with personalised micro-learning and real-time employee performance management tools, will open its first APAC office in Melbourne, with plans to hire up to 30 employees.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

The Power of One-to-One Engagement
Pega
December 07, 2020
Here is the final chat in the Pega Systems series with Matthew Nolan, Senior Director of Product Marketing - Decision Sciences, as we explore the power of one-to-one engagement
#cx #ai #aiethics #engagement

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Predictive Analytics, Future of Work

What is Hyper-Personalisation?
Pega
December 04, 2020
Contrary to what many organisations may believe, hyper-personalisation isn't just addressing a customer by name when contacting them—it’s about understanding who they are and what they need. Senior Director of Product Marketing, Decision Sciences at Pega, Matt Nolan, explains what hyper-personalisation is and why it’s so important as he speaks PLAYFULLi’s CEO, Luke Jamieson.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Predictive Analytics

Activating real-time, one-to-one relationships (Part 1)
Pega
December 01, 2020
It's imperative brands develop real-time, one-to-one relationships with customers, but how do organisations make this a reality? For Matt Nolan, Senior Director of Product Marketing, Decision Sciences at Pega, it's a real passion-point. Check out his our recent chat: https://lnkd.in/dcFQMVu

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Predictive Analytics

Gamification in CX
Engati
August 29, 2020
Exploring the relationship of CX with Gamification in an interview with Engati CX

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

How Microsoft increased agent productivity in its contact centers by 10% using advanced gamification.
Centrical
August 25, 2020
Luke interviews Dee Nilles - Business Program Director at Centrical on how Microsoft increased agent productivity in its contact centers by 10% using advanced gamification.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Gamification in CX
EngatiCX
August 18, 2020
Exploring how gamification and CX are symbiotic.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

New era, new opportunities for Aussie call centres, post-COVID-19
Citrus Group
May 25, 2020
Amid the disruption, job losses, new ways of working in isolation, and other challenges, there is a beacon of hope post-COVID-19
It has opened up a host of opportunities for the local contact centre industry. Business has had to recognise the importance of Australian, onshore, call centres to deliver customer service in isolation. For Australians who have lost jobs or are seeking new roles, there are openings for people of all ages and all skill levels

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, COVID19

Playing around with gamification
Focus magazine
May 01, 2020
Is the methodology of setting KPIs flawed?

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Drive improvements in customer and employee engagement
The Evolved Group
March 12, 2019
Learn how a leading not-for-profit super fund is using our technology to drive improvements in customer and employee engagement

Luke Jamieson, chats to Paul Burley, Growth Director at The Evolved Group, about the journey the organisation has been on to improve customer and employee experience using HumanListening - the most complete insights and knowledge management platform available.

HumanListening delivers real-time human insights to empower your business.
Let us show you how we can improve your business outcomes – book a demo at www.humanlistening.com

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Future of Work

Luke Jamieson on how gamification changed the game at First State Super
Matchboard
September 22, 2018
Luke Jamieson has never been afraid to challenge the status quo. His career habit of innovation has made a real impact on customer and employee engagement, resulting in multiple global awards. In this exclusive interview, we chat to Luke about his positively disruptive initiatives at First State Super. You’ve abandoned traditional contact centre metrics at….

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Call Centre Delivers for Staff and Customers
SuperTalk
December 01, 2014
SaletTalk spoke with Luke Jamieson about new staff initiatives at the fund's award-winning call centre.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Innovation

3 Panels
How Gamification (games psychology and mechanics) can benefit business and personal ambitions
ORMA - The Global Consumer Commerce Centre
October 21, 2021
Gamification has attracted a lot of attention over recent years as a way of engaging attention and influencing behaviours.

For many people, gamification has been associated with points, badges and leader-boards as tools to engage and motivate users.

The truth is that gamification offers far more and, when used appropriately, can transform business and personal activities.

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Tags: Customer Experience

How Gamification (games psychology and mechanics) can benefit our business and personal ambitions
IORMA
October 15, 2021
Gamification has attracted a lot of attention over recent years as a way of engaging attention and influencing behaviours. For many people, gamification has been associated with points, badges and leader-boards as tools to engage and motivate users. The truth is that gamification offers far more and, when used appropriately, can transform business and personal activities.

Gamification combined with technologies such as smartphones is being used in a variety of ways to improve our lives – most noticeably in healthcare, education and training. Today, gamified mobile applications help us to adhere to exercise regimes, decrease our weight, manage a chronic illness, learn faster, motivate employees and customers and/or maintain/develop our cognitive abilities …..

Our expert panel of speakers will share their experiences of the use of serious games and gamification to engage users and achieve better outcomes.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

Getting your WFH employees to love their work, your company, and your clients
Centrical
June 07, 2021
Months after their shift to working from home, lots of employees still feel isolated, disconnected from their co-workers, and company. Quite likely, they pass that feeling to the customers their deal with daily. They probably fell out of love with their jobs. You can have them feel that love again.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

25 Podcasts
Boost - The Best Bits of Season 1
Centrical
October 05, 2022
If you missed any of season one of BOOST then this episode is for you. Lujke and Laurahave picked some (not all) of their favourite clips from guests like: Dennis Wakabayashi, Annette Franz, CCXP, Tim Buzza and Yemi Penn (Nee Solanke) and then wedged them into this best-of-episode along with some behind-the-scenes info about the show's production.

Would love to know what your favourite bits were - comment below (or on Youtube) for them to be included in our listener best bits episode.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Next in Queue - Ep. 50
Happitu
September 02, 2022
Luke Jamieson got sick of the hours of being a pastry chef and ended up in the Contact Center world in Melbourne, Australia. He became an advocate employee engagement through gamification which led him to start his own consulting company. Today, as the Global Content Director at Centrical, he still advocates for great gamification in contact centers. He’s also a certified LEGO Serious Play facilitator who uses LEGO to help groups solve problems.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Life’s a Game – Play It: What Tim Has Learned about Work Limits While Traveling the World
Centrical
August 18, 2022
What does work look like without limits?

Few people know better than Tim Buzza, Chief Customer Officer at Attune Work Solutions. As he travels the world, he’s learned employees have three unique modes of work: Creative, collaborative and concentrated. And that great leaders empower and enable their employees to design each mode how they work best.

Learn how Tim inspires teams to create an employee experience that drives results

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Going to Gemba: How the Best Leaders Design Frontline Jobs
Centrical
August 09, 2022
Going to Gemba: How the Best Leaders Design Frontline Jobs**

"Gemba" is the practice of leaders learning from their frontline employees.

Sean McGinn founder and director of the Melbourne-based Agile Contact Centre suggests you adopt the Japanese practice with your teams, too. Interacting more with customers than any other employees, call center teams are uniquely poised to learn about gaps, fix them and adapt. And it starts with leaders giving them the psychological safety and autonomy to do their job effectively.

Sean joins Laura and I on BOOST to share how to create a healthy and successful frontline employee experience.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Building a Culture of Appreciation with Glen Cathey
Centrical
July 21, 2022
Recording a sales call might feel like Big Brother to some employees, but leveraging recording technology can lead to major boosts in performance. How do you balance trust in your employees with the desire to help them improve?

Glen Cathey SVP, Head of Digital Strategy & Innovation at Randstad, joins the show to share how he navigates situations like this.

Listen in to hear his insights on navigating innovation, work relationships, and leadership. Oh, and what the business world can learn from your favourite sports team.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Creating Frameworks for Sustainable Performance with Lisa Dolan
Centrical
July 11, 2022
Lisa Dolan, Senior Vice President of Employee Engagement and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Teleperformance, shares best practices for employee engagement. We discuss the importance of listening to employees, caring for all areas of their wellbeing, and creating frameworks that enable sustainable performance.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

BOOST Podcast
Centrical
July 06, 2022
BOOST is a variety show from Centrical focused on one thing: helping you elevate your employee engagement and performance.
Hosts Luke Jamieson and Laura Butvinik explore a collection of employee engagement topics, examining trends to know, insights to help you become a better leader, and conversations with peers sure to put a smile on your face

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Tags: Customer Experience, Management, Leadership

The Starring Character: The Business Case for Compassion
Centrical
June 23, 2022
As a leader, is it your responsibility to address an employee’s personal trauma?

Yemi Penn, TEDx speaker, entrepreneur, and author answers this and many other big questions in this episode. She dives into incorporating mindfulness into relationships with employees and the importance of sharing our stories.

While compassion isn’t something we're always taught to practice at work, it’s a critical element of successful organisations. Yemi makes the business case for creating space to be human at work and explains the difference between accommodating others’ trauma and being responsible for it.

**Key Takeaways:**

- How to become a trauma-informed leader
- The difference between being responsible for trauma and accommodating trauma
- The business case for creating space for compassion at work

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Come One, Come All: Enabling your employees’ “Rare Breed” virtues
Centrical
June 09, 2022
“We’re firing these Rare Breed talents for the same reason we hired them.”

Talk about a mindblown moment! In this episode, Luke and Laura welcome author Sunny Bonnell to the BOOST stage to share more on her “Rare Breed” movement. Sunny is on a mission to empower leaders to harness the power of their most audacious, obsessed, weird, hypnotic, rebellious employees–all of these being “Rare Breed” traits that will, if fostered correctly, take your organization and its success to the next level.

Throughout their conversation, you’ll be challenged and empowered to encourage your employees to wear their “rare breed” traits with pride–all the while, boosting morale, engagement, and innovation.

On with the show!

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

BOOST BONUS: The key to engaging employees of all ages
Centrical
June 02, 2022
From Gen Z to Gen X and every generation in between, every employee wants the same thing: engaging, relevant experiences. So, how do you create these experiences for employees of all ages? Who better to tell us than the man of the hour–Gal Rimon.
Gal is the Founder and CEO of Centrical, and he has a bird’s-eye view of which employee engagement trends are sticking–and which ones aren’t. In this special bonus episode, he is sharing his tips for ensuring that you design experiences that engage all ages. And, he’s providing a sneak peek at what you can expect from Centrical’s annual event, Success 2022.



Join Centrical virtually at Success 2022 to explore how an employee-first approach to business success is the only way forward in today's workplace. At this annual event, you’ll hear how leading organizations are making strategic investments in their people through technology to drive purpose and belonging, inspire and support their growth, and maintain connection no matter where they are.

Together, let’s be bold and rebuild the future of work. Visit: https://info.centrical.com/success2022-virtual?utm_source=LukeJamieson to learn more and register.

On with the show!

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Stories of Impact: The keys to impactful employee training
Centrical
May 26, 2022
Are your employee training programs telling (and creating) impactful stories?

On this episode, Renzo Urzua, Global Contact Centre Management Training & Design Lead for Mastercard, joins BOOST to share his insight on helping to manage and train global teams. We discuss the ways language and culture deeply impact training dynamics, and the importance of encouraging each employee’s own personal brand through the training process and beyond.

Alright, enough from us – press play!

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

BOOST: Moments of Truth - Establishing the foundation of your CX and EX
Centrical
May 11, 2022
It’s time for the moment of truth…

Or, rather, the moments–the ones that define your culture, your employee experience, and your customer success!

On this episode, Laura Patterson President and Co-Founder of VisionEdge Marketing and author of Fast Track Your Business joins BOOST to share the keys to providing a rockstar employee experience, and why even the littlest moments matter in creating experiences that impact your bottom line. We discuss how CX and EX both affect each other, why culture sets the foundation for business success, and how to progressively empower your employees.

Alright, enough from us – press play!

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Tags: Customer Experience, Culture, Future of Work

BOOST - Wow Factor: Creating “edutaining” experiences for your employees
Centrical
April 28, 2022
What if we treated our employee experience like it was a performance?

(You didn’t think we made this a variety show for nothing, did you?)

On this episode, influencer and author Dennis Wakabayashi (https://www.linkedin.com/in/denniswakabayashi/) takes to the BOOST stage to share all about how his experience at Expo 2020 Dubai changed the way he thinks about creating experiences for employees. Dennis shares not only his incredible stories from Dubai, but also his tactical takeaways for how you can implement storytelling in your EX strategies, celebrate employees in creative ways, and how corporations can start thinking of “the needs of the few”, first.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

BOOST! S1E2 - EX Excellence: Here’s how to create an employee journey map
Centrical
April 14, 2022
We dedicate so much of our organization’s energy and resources to customer journey mapping…why aren’t we doing the same for our employee experience?

In this episode, author [Annette Franz](https://www.linkedin.com/in/annette-franz/) takes to the BOOST stage to talk about why (and how) companies should map out their employee experiences just as carefully as their customer experiences. Annette recently authored the book “Built To Win” https://annettefranz.com/ which is all about creating a customer-centric culture by putting employees at the heart of everything.

You’ll leave today’s show armed with some serious inspiration for your employee experience map, some tips on effectively measuring employee engagement metrics, and how to begin leaving a lasting impression on your employees from day one.

On with the show!

Key Takeaways:

- A customer-centric culture starts with the employee experience

- People before products, people before profits, people before metrics

- Your hiring efforts will be useless unless you have a plan to engage your employees from day one

**Things to listen for:**

[2:00] Two Truths and A Lie: don’t sleep on this one

[6:29] EX = Great CX

[8:50] “People before products, people before profits and people before metrics”

[10:50] How to effectively track employee engagement metrics

[14:10] “We don’t have the tools to do our jobs properly”

[15:00] Hiring: It’s all about first impression, last impression, lasting impression

[18:00] The importance of employee reviews

[21:14] Luke and Laura’s Mind-blown Moments

[22:34] Producer Jillian gets in trouble with Luke

**Additional Resources:**

Annette’s book: “Built To Win” https://annettefranz.com/

Gartner Employee Well-being report https://www.gartner.com/en/human-resources/trends/support-wellbeing-2021-and-beyond

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Tags: Customer Experience, Diversity and Inclusion, Future of Work

BOOST - The Serotonin Episode S1E1
Centrical
April 01, 2022
BOOST! The pilot episode is live for your listening pleasure featuring the incredible Nate Brown! - Wherever you get your audio

https://open.spotify.com/episode/3kaGTFb8mQjXfz3p64K3gp?si=5cb23a1add794b98

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Tags: Customer Experience, Diversity and Inclusion, Future of Work

Introducing BOOST: An Employee Experience Variety Show
Centrical
March 16, 2022
Boost performance. Drive employee engagement. Create a learning culture. Ensure business agility. Engage and train. Manage your workforce. Retain talent. Drive results.

Rinse.

And repeat.

No matter how you break it down, when it comes to employee performance, there are a lot of factors to consider. And the playbooks that worked in the past have quickly become obsolete.

With work forces going completely remote, to confusing tech stacks, and the great resignation, companies have to put their employees at the center of everything. Because without employee success there is no business - let alone success.

BOOST is a variety show focused on one thing: helping you elevate your employee experience and performance. Hosts Luke Jamieson and Laura Butvinik take you into a collection of employee engagement topics exploring trends to know, insights to help you be a better leader, and conversations with peers sure to put a smile on your face.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Diversity and Inclusion, Future of Work

Survive Revive Thrive - Episode 6
VIS Global
October 25, 2021
What will change in the near future? Will the world of technology continue to give us the solutions we need? What new challenges lie ahead? Will the webinar really die away? Luke Jamieson, Regional Director ANZ at Centrical, discusses his own personal and professional journey and takes through how he has survived, revived and thrived. He also discusses what the future of work might look like and the role technology might play.

All this and more in our latest episode of ‘Survive Revive Thrive’ brought to you by VIS Global. Listen ON! -- About Luke Jamieson Our guest today is top global CX influencer, a multiple award winner and thought leader on customer and employee engagement – the world knows him as Luke Jamieson. He has helped shape some of Australia’s largest organisations' customer and employee experience programs. He is also an inspiring and refreshing keynote speaker, podcaster and blogger.

Luke's been featured in numerous publications including the Wall Street Journal and has studied design thinking at Stanford University.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Future of Work


Innovative Minds
August 11, 2021
The nature of work has changed, impacting both the workplace and the workforce. In this new WFH/hybrid paradigm, how do we keep our employees engaged with the organization’s mission and values, as well as each other? In this podcast, we interview business leaders and hear their stories and viewpoints on how to use innovation to engage the workforce.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

Working PLAYFULLi & Unlocking your Polymath Superpower with Luke Jamieson
The Polymath PolyCast
June 08, 2021

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

The right way to do gamification
CX Central
December 01, 2020
Justin Tippett interviews our founder Luke Jamieson to learn about the benefits of gamification at work and how to implement it successfully

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Leadership

The Games We Play
Luke Jamieson
November 12, 2020
We are all game designers at heart we just all don’t know it yet. Tune in to hear Luke Jamieson and Dr Zach Fitz-walter discuss some of the funny games we play in our everyday lives.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Talking Wyndham
Talking Wyndham
October 21, 2020
Talking Wyndham

Talking Wyndham is your weekly insight into the people who make the City of Wyndham surprising, fascinating, vibrant and interesting.

Talking Wyndham is an initiative of the Committee for Wyndham, presented by Kevin Hillier

What is gamification? Find out as we speak with Luke Jamieson, founder & CEO of Wyndham based gamification business PLAYFULLi

Find them at http://playfulli.com

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Gamification of CX - Luke Jamieson on Engati CX
Spotify
August 14, 2020
Engati is the world's leading no-code, multi-lingual chatbot platform. Blog link: https://blog.engati.com/ | Subscribe now. Luke Jamieson, founder and CEO of Playfulli talks about Gamification of CX on Engati CX. He says that gamification can be a very powerful incentive, motivator and can boost customer engagement exponentially. The best way to improve CX would be to make customers feel satisfied by the product which would make them the advocates for it. If you like the video, please subscribe to the channel, so we could keep producing more content like this!

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Gamifying Engagement in Remote Teams
The Science of CX
May 26, 2020
Steve Pappas interviews Luke Jamieson on employee engagement and how gamification is helping to provide a shared purpose and real time learning wilts working from home.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Culture, Future of Work

The Power of Gamification
Playfulli
May 23, 2020
Murray Guest from Inspire My Business had Luke Jamieson on his awesome podcast - inspired energy.

They discuss how gamification can be a game changer for your business, especially when it comes to KPIs and repeatable behaviours. Luke’s explains how he is an advocate of making it competitive but not with unhealthy competition and how traditional KPIs focus on who will be ‘the best’, which only benefits the short term.

Key episode highlights include:

We are currently in a global ‘work from home’ experiment, and it’s time to find out ways to help people master their roles and find purpose.

The five love languages do translate into the work environment and in the way we like to receive recognition. You need to identify what people are motivated by.

Create an environment where someone is competing against themselves, not others.

Our systems are only as good as our attitudes.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Leadership

2 Profiles
Global Top 25 Thought Larrikin on CX & EX.
Luke Jamieson
April 13, 2022
Getting Luke to speak at your next conference, event, boardroom, webinar or BBQ has never been easier

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Tags: Customer Experience, Design Thinking, Future of Work

Luke Jamieson
Luke Jamieson
April 07, 2022
Bio Page

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Tags: Customer Experience, Diversity and Inclusion, Future of Work

3 Speaking Engagements
Own your future.Unlocking people potential, at scale.
Centrical
June 07, 2022
The world of work is at an evolutionary point in history, and i'm not talking about an incremental change. More like a radical leap. Here is the blueprint for making a successful leap into the future.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Future of Work

Success 2021
Centrical
June 08, 2021
Join the leaders who are reimagining the world of work to ensure employee and business success

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Innovation

Working PLAYFULLi & Unlocking your Polymath Superpower with Luke Jamieson [The Polymath PolyCast]
Dustin Miller - PolyInnovator
April 04, 2021
►Welcome Luke Jamieson the founder and CEO of PLAYFULLi, an innovative consulting company helping solve for employee engagement, performance, purpose, strategy and culture through play and gamification.

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Tags: Innovation, Future of Work

1 Video
30-Second AHT with Rob Dwyer
Centrical
November 18, 2022
Rob Dwyer takes on the first 30 Second AHT Challenge, but can the Next in Queue podcast host be succinct enough to beat the 30 second timer?

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

3 Webinars
Unlocking the power of gamification at contact centers
Centrical
December 07, 2022
Keeping agents connected with their team and manager in contact centers is critical to ensuring high and consistent performance. But maintaining the pulse of your remote workforce, coaching, and keeping agents motivated and focused on the right goals is a challenge.

Join our webinar to learn how leading contact centers are rising to the challenge by using gamification and AI-driven coaching to guide employees and frontline teams to success.

What we will cover:

• Sustaining agent motivation and engagement for peak performance
• Empowering your agents with AI-driven learning
• Transforming your frontline managers into consistent coaches

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Demo: Building High Performing Frontline Teams Using Gamification and AI-Driven Coaching
Centrical
August 11, 2022
Keeping agents connected with their team and manager in hybrid contact centers is critical to ensuring performance consistency. But maintaining the pulse of your remote workforce, coaching, and keeping agents focused on the right goals and motivated to perform daily is a challenge. Join the webinar to learn how leading contact centers are rising to the challenge using gamification and AI-driven coaching to guide employees and teams to success, from anywhere.

What we will cover:

Motivate agents with:  

Actionable performance metrics 
Individual and team competitions
Transform frontline managers into coaches with:

Scheduled and continuous coaching
Guided coaching actions (the new water-cooler conversation)
Empower your agents with AI-driven learning, including: 

Real-time learning nudges 
Social knowledge sharing

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Effective use of Technology to skill your people for the future
Abeam
April 26, 2022

Today’s learners don’t want to be pushed into just formal trainings - compliance and skills training. They also want to explore and choose learning journeys that benefit them directly and in very specific ways, whether that's being better equipped to do their jobs, training toward development and/or advancement, or feeling more connected to others. They need to feel a sense of purpose and connection and know how training benefits them in a meaningful way to tie into the greater purpose of their job and the mission of the company. Effective training is needed to ensure all employees understand the requirements of your business, but where and how do you start?

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Future of Work

Radar

2 Trends
Conversational AI

Date : October 20, 2021

Traditional chatbots tend to funnel users to a specific answer where as conversational AI works in the opposite way, probing and expanding just like a real conversation. Interestingly people are more likely to share more personal stories with people they don't know which is one reason Psychologists are so popular. With that in mind it is easy to see how Conversational AI is the next generation of chatbot tech.

See Radar

Gamification

Date : October 04, 2020

Gamification is still a mostly untapped and misunderstood science. For over a decade it has had much scepticism and hype with hit and miss success, however as the craft matures and is understood at a deeper level it is now starting to become a sustainable alternative to traditional ways of measuring and engaging employees from both a learning and performance perspective.
Both Gallup and Fifth Quadrant have conducted surveys for the last decade around employee engagement and astoundingly the figures have remained horribly similar with only roughly 25% of employees saying they are actively engaged with their performance. This is by no means surprising given few companies have done much to change how they train, design kpi's and engage employees.
Playfulli, who developed an employee profiling tool, tested with over 65,000 people shows that there are actually 8 motivational profiles across an organisation, of which most organisations only tend to engage two (25%) when designing how employees are measured, reinforcing this notion that only a quarter of employees are engaged.
Gamification when implemented correctly goes beyond simply points, badges and leader-boards (a common entry level approach) and instead focuses on behaviours, motivational diversity , employee strengths and micro-learning.
In the past many gamification platforms have tried to portray themselves as the silver bullet for performance and in doing so found short-lived success. Many realised that simply "gamifying" the same old metrics and expecting a different result yielded only short-term success. As these gamification platforms matured, they realised that they needed to solve for the root cause, not the symptoms and thankfully this is now showing fantastic results with organisations courageous enough to explore the scientific art of gamification.
Gartner has predicted the 70% of fortune 500 companies will attempt gamification. Those who approach it in a scientific way and are willing to turn their back on traditional lag metrics are likely to see results that will buck the 10-year trend we have been witnessing of low employee engagement.
Gamification should be on the radar of any organisation looking to drive greater employee engagement and knowledge retention (particularly those with a distributed workforce) even if they have tried and failed in the past because like most technologies and concepts, gamification has matured rapidly from where it was merely years ago especially those that have built in machine learning and AI capability.

See Radar

3 Predictions
The Rise of Augmented Coaching

Date : November 14, 2022

Quiet quitting became common vernacular in 2022 and it's my belief that this is hugely driven by overwhelmed managers with not enough time. Managers over the past few years have been required to take on many new roles, none more so that the role of a coach. However effective coaching requires time and insight. In addition to all the other requirements of a manager, they are also required to interrogate data for skill gaps and build coaching to help close the gaps. Unfortunately, many managers just don't have the time which is why Augmented Coaching will be the next big trend. AI will provide managers not only insights as to who to coach and when but also recommend the next best action. AI will do the heavy lifting with the tactical aspects of coaching which will free managers to put their best foot forward when it comes to those high-value moments such as one-on-one conversations. This augmented coaching experience will assist managers in being more actively engaged in the coaching experience and give greater insight into employee churn (including quiet quitting) and coaching effectiveness.

See Radar

The Rise of Augmented Coaching

Date : November 14, 2022

Quiet quitting became common vernacular in 2022 and it's my belief that this is hugely driven by overwhelmed managers with not enough time. Managers over the past few years have been required to take on many new roles, none more so that the role of a coach. However effective coaching requires time and insight. In addition to all the other requirements of a manager, they are also required to interrogate data for skill gaps and build coaching to help close the gaps. Unfortunately, many managers just don't have the time which is why Augmented Coaching will be the next big trend. AI will provide managers not only insights as to who to coach and when but also recommend the next best action. AI will do the heavy lifting with the tactical aspects of coaching which will free managers to put their best foot forward when it comes to those high-value moments such as one-on-one conversations. This augmented coaching experience will assist managers in being more actively engaged in the coaching experience and give greater insight into employee churn (including quiet quitting) and coaching effectiveness.

See Radar

Gamification - the key to augmented management

Date : October 08, 2020

The Gamification industry has had many resurgences in the past 10 years however it is finally here to stay and with good reason. Gamification has finally matured beyond simple game mechanics designed to drive spending and productivity behaviours to a full-blown behavioural psychology and motivational design industry supported by tech (not led by it).
With distributed workplaces a norm and likely to stay that way managers are finding it harder to see employee behaviour and basing coaching on lag measures. Gone are the informal catch-ups, replaced by structured and scheduled video calls - eroding employee trust.
Gamification combined with Machine Learning, AI and micro-learning is helping managers by prompting the them with insightful coaching tips, challenges and conversations. Gone is the pouring over of data and spreadsheets, structuring and preparing performance conversations sourcing long winded online training modules that are always completed and instantly forgotten. Gamification has long been focused on roles closest to entry level and managers where left with the admin but those day are gone. Advanced Gamification, real-time performance, lead measurement and micro-learning are going to augment a manager’s activity and ease the admin burden allowing them to build trust and empathy with the people they lead and create repeated positive behaviours positive that fuel amazing workplace cultures.

See Radar

Blog

23 Article/Blogs
Why Play Beats Fun When it Comes to Serious Business
Thinkers360
September 12, 2022

My ideal recipe for fun usually goes something like this; 2 parts running around, 1½ parts competition, a handful of creativity and sprinkled with an element of risk.

To others, like my 16-year-old daughter, that may sound downright horrifying. Fun, just like art is subjective, I often cringe when workplaces include fun in their values or worse have a fun committee. Now before you go labelling me as the fun police hear me out. It’s not because I think you shouldn’t be able to have fun at work, but the fact that fun is not always inclusive. There will always be someone who thinks the activity that the “fun committee” just organised is childish, lame, scary, intimidating or just simply an awful idea. Basically, the opposite of its purpose. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to have fun at work, and if you are part of a fun committee don’t give up, just remember that fun, like this article is a matter of opinion.

Play on the other hand might be one worth considering.

Play, (not to be confused with games) is an amazing thing. Play is an innate behaviour that even in our youngest years we start to experience. Playing with objects, feeling their texture, tasting them, shaking and squeezing them to see if they make a sound or throwing them to see what happens. At first, you might argue that is just curiosity, but then if that was the case why would babies then repeat the process? It’s not repeated out of curiosity but because of joy. This does not stop at babies. Young children love going to parks, going on swings, slides, and sea-saws, which are not games and once you have been on them there is no mystery for curiosity to solve. And even without things like parks, play is witnessed in the simple act of spinning around to experience the sensation of dizziness. As adults, we exchange the humble playground for amusement parks. The rides are not games, there is no winning or losing and there are no rules other than empty your pockets of loose change and try not to vomit. Play is the act of engaging with the intent of experiencing joy in the present moment.

The noun is the verb, the verb is the noun.

Play helps us learn

Ok so we’ve established that play and curiosity are not the same things but, there is some crossover. Curiosity may drive us to initiate learning, but play is the teacher. Even in animals, we see play. Watch young cubs, lambs, kittens, and puppies. They play. They wrestle, play tug-o-war and tag. They are playing and learning life skills that will help them survive.

In children, it’s things like building blocks, colouring in and songs. The actions help build muscle function and memory. Play and physical activity are synonymous which is why it is so great for learning. Our bodies develop faster when we combine physical action with mental growth.

The homunculus man, an ugly statue that represents how we sense things. It has giant hands, lips, ears, and eyes. When we use all these senses, we rapidly absorb more information. It's why babies put everything in their mouths. They are using as many senses as they can.

Adult academic learning has relied on only a couple of these senses for a long time. Seeing and hearing. Is this why apprenticeships are shorter than a master's degree? Because you could argue that the content and skills are equally as challenging and complex, so is it because people learn faster when there is a hands-on element. Without engaging all our senses, we do not learn as fast, and play is great at getting all the senses involved.

Play and Psychological Safety.

Play is a great leveller. Play does not require a winner so therefore there are no losers. Let’s take Lego for example. You may not be the next Brickman but you can’t be “bad” at Lego which is why the use of Lego is so effective in problem-solving and innovation workshops. As a Lego Serious Play (LSP) facilitator, I enjoy seeing how using Lego helps solve problems and addresses the elephant in the room whilst also creating an environment that allows both executives and front-line staff to openly communicate with no judgement. With LSP your hands often do the thinking so the battle of brains and ego fades into the background and hierarchy has no bearing on the outcome. This helps increase the feeling of psychological safety because you can’t do Lego wrong. When you ask someone to build a tower with you in it the options are limitless. They could build a tower that has a figurine in it that represents themselves or they could build a tower where the tower itself represents the person. There is no right or wrong and that is a beautiful thing.

Play vs Fun

I was recently watching an episode of Bluey with my 5-year-old daughter and to be honest, I am not sure who likes the show more. In this particular episode, Bluey makes a friend whilst camping by the name of Jean-Luc who is French. The language barrier is quickly overcome through play which ultimately helps them capture the wild boar (Bluey’s dad Bandit.) Play is a vehicle that can break down all sorts of barriers, language, cultural, hierarchical, and more. Play, unlike fun, is not subjective. Play can be applied to attitude (playful) and play can be used as a tool to solve many challenges.

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So, if you are thinking about a values revamp or feel you need a fun committee. Perhaps consider play as a value and maybe a play committee instead. Play might not have winners or losers but, play itself wins over fun every time when it comes to serious business.    

So, what’s next?

Let’s play and find out.

See blog

Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

What Comes First? CXicken or the EXg?
Thinkers360
August 25, 2022

Ah, the age-old question: What comes first? The CXicken or the EXg?

Yes, I know that’s not quite right.

But today I’m talking about Customer Experience (CX) and Employee Experience (EX), so you’ll have to forgive me for fitting it into this analogy.

Because just like the chicken and the egg, there’s no clear answer here to what comes first. We know that every good customer experience starts with a good employee experience because happy employees do a better job! But without customers, there would be no employees. So, what comes first?

The reality is that the employee-customer relationship is symbiotic—one cannot exist without the other. But when we put it in a workplace context, understanding what comes first and what’s most important gives employers a direction and focus.

So, let’s take a squizz.

The Case for the CXicken

Customer is King. Or, at least, “the customer is always right.”

This has been the dominant idea for the last few decades, with companies taking a customer-first approach to their operations and decisions.

If the customer is the king, then employees are serving the monarch. Laurell K. Hamilton once said, “Power makes you a monarch, and all the fancy robes in the world won’t do the job without it.” To contextualise it, companies may have great employees and a great product, but with no buyer, the kingdom will crumble.

So, customers matter. There is significant evidence that customer experience is a fundamental business driver, as demonstrated in Harley Manning and Kerry Bodine’s book Outside In. In it, they highlight case studies of companies that saved millions of dollars through simple fixes that supported the customer experience.

But the catch is that customers don’t always know what they want until they know what they don’t have. It’s the employees as an extension of the company who create a product or service that shows customers what they need or want to solve specific solutions.

The Case for the EXg

If it’s the employees driving the solutions, then they come first. They’re the ones showing customers what they need and want—they’re the chicken laying the egg.

In a recent podcast interview, Annette Franz put it this way: “Employees need to come more first.” Her case for putting employees first in a company’s priorities is that employee engagement will lead to increased retention, happiness, and fulfilment. All these things will help them excel in their role and provide better customer service.

Strong EX begets strong CX.

Companies that want to take a customer-centric approach need to look inward and maximise the EX.

Final Verdict: Employee's First

The debate about chicken vs. egg, and EX vs. CX can continue. But I’m putting my answer down here so as not to be seen as sitting on the fence: EX must come first. Employees are the priority for management because they will naturally impact everything else in the company!

So, how can companies build strong EX? I’ve talked about it a few times before (here and here), but it ultimately comes down to six key areas:

  • Having a sense of purpose
  • Providing meaning and impact
  • Celebrating achievements
  • Giving a sense of progress
  • Giving space for autonomy
  • Handing over ownership

These are key factors that determine employee engagement in the workplace. Managers and leaders need to work these things into their company culture which, according to 56% of respondents in one study, is more important than salary.  

A strong employee-first culture will naturally lead to high-quality customer service, increased sales, and other business goals. A strong customer experience depends on a company’s ability to nurture and support employees.

That’s my two cents on this. What do you think comes first, the CXicken or the EXg? My inbox is always open to discuss more topics like employee engagement, EX, and CX.

Till next time, hooroo.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

AI's Impact on Employee Engagement
Thinkers360
July 31, 2022
I recently came across this joke from James Franco that’s been circling around (for a while):
My wife asked me why I spoke so softly in the house...
I said I was afraid Mark Zuckerberg was listening.
She laughed, I laughed, Alexa laughed, Siri too.

I had to laugh, and if you haven’t heard that one already, I hope it gave you a laugh too. Artificial intelligence (AI) is commonplace enough today that we can laugh about it, but that’s not always been the case. There was a point in time when people were afraid that robots would start taking away everyone’s jobs. And while this fear was augmented by futuristic Sci-Fi movies, it was a real concern for many people. What value do you offer if technology can do everything you once did?

Today, AI is taking people’s jobs… and we kind of like it that way. AI helps make our lives easier in so many ways. This comprehensive list of AI in our daily lives shows just how prevalent it is!

There is no longer an assumption that AI and automation are man-made evils leading us to judgment day. Instead, we understand that it’s a complex thing—sometimes working out well, sometimes not so much.

So, when it comes to AI in the workplace, can we leverage it to boost the employee experience? Is it something that will ultimately bring positive benefits to the workplace, or do we still need to fear robots ruining things that are important to us?

Let’s explore.

Examples of AI in the Workplace

AI is very common today. So common that we might not even think about it as AI! When you contact a customer service department online, you’re quite likely to be speaking with an AI-driven chatbot to help figure out your problems.

The most common purpose of AI is to offload jobs that people don’t want to do, freeing up time to focus on things that you do want to do. Here are two examples I’ve seen in recent times:

  • The first - Practical tasks: I was in a Woolworths recently and saw a robot going around detecting spills on the floor whilst actively avoiding running into customers (see link below). This task is something that we don’t need humans to do. This robot was freeing up people to be focused on helping with much more value-adding activities like serving customers.
  • The second - Data collection and analytics: For a long time, this has rested on the shoulders of managers, taking them away from doing what they do best which is coaching and developing staff. However now thanks to AI this can be done faster and more accurately, allowing managers to turn their focus away from Excel and BI tools and back on the people they lead. I see this in action daily with Centrical’s Augmented coaching, which takes thousands of data points and delivers coaching insights that allow managers to deliver the right coaching approach with the right content for the right person at the right time.

Is AI Good Enough?

I think that using AI to free employees up to do more important work is a wonderful use of it. But that’s what it does—AI takes aways work from people. So, the question becomes: is AI good enough to replace people in all circumstances?

The answer highly depends on what we’re trying to use AI for. To clean floors at Woolworths? Yeah, our technology is good enough to replace a person.

But human-to-human contact? I’m not so sure about that. I’ve rarely interacted with a chatbot that has the same understanding as a human. Typically, it just lengthens the time of my interaction before I can get in touch with a real person. That said, data shows that chatbots actually have a pretty high success rate: 87.2% of consumers have a neutral or positive experience and 68.9% of chats are handled by a bot start-to-finish.

But while my frustrations with chatbots might not be shared universally, there is still a lot of room for error in using AI technology to replace a real person. Chatbots do not understand social constructs and need to be constantly monitored so as not to be manipulated. Microsoft’s Tay project is the perfect example of this: they released a Twitter bot that was supposed to impersonate human-like interactions. Instead, Tay started making racist and derogatory remarks to other Twitter users!

So, we need to be careful about quickly jumping to use AI. We need to ask: what’s the purpose of using AI right now? If it’s to take shortcuts and circumvent human-to-human interaction, we’re likely not using it right. But if it’s to free up time to focus on those human interactions, it can be a powerful tool.

Harnessing AI for Employee Engagement

For AI to positively impact employee engagement, it must be used strategically.

AI-driven data, logistics, and statistics that can make targeted suggestions and track progress, so managers know how to best coach and lead their teams effectively make a lot of sense. Instead of wasting time exploring, analysing or wondering what’s working and what’s not, they can just focus on the relationships.

Similarly, AI can be used to empower employees in their customer interactions. If AI can lessen their workload and remove some easy, routine tasks (i.e., filling out a report or summarising data), they can get back to what is most impactful.

AI has the potential to improve both the employee and customer experience. But it can only do that if we get our heads out of the spreadsheet and go back to what’s truly important—better human interactions. AI for the sake of AI is not going to do us any good. Let’s be strategic, know its limitations, and use it to free up time to strengthen and build solid human interactions. Because it’s person-to-person contact that truly makes the difference for employee engagement and customer experience.

Those are my thoughts—I want to hear from you! What’s been your experience with AI in the workplace? Do you share my frustrations with chatbots? What are the biggest AI “wins” that you’ve seen?

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Tags: AI, Customer Experience, Future of Work

In Love or Burn Out: Why Loving Your Job is Key to Retention and Reducing Burnout
Thinkers360
June 27, 2022

Those four little letters… you know the ones L.O.V.E. Sometimes they can be hard to say, even to your nearest and dearest, so you‘ll have to forgive the audacity when I say we need to love our jobs. However, it may be the antidote to soaring attrition in the workplace. A 2022 report conducted by Smaart Recruitment found that 45% of employees are considering leaving their jobs because they’re dissatisfied with - wait for it... the work they do. Yes, you read that right, their work!

Right now, I can hear all the collective sighs of relief from managers, who for decades have been blamed (and in many cases responsible) for being the top driver for people to leaving their jobs. But what was once a matter of ‘changing the manager’ or ‘changing the manager’ now is a seemingly much bigger challenge. Employees it seems, are leaving because of a lack of purpose and meaning. This requires organisational changes and a redesign of how roles are developed and sold to prospective employees.

Why it Matters

You might be thinking, “I don’t love my job, but it pays the bills and has good benefits. Isn’t that good enough?” For seasons of your life, it may be—there are times when you might be in a pinch and need to take a job for pure financial reasons.

But if we’re talking about optimising employee engagement and reducing burnout, then yes, it does matter if you love your job.

Now I’m not talking about loving every single aspect of it. Even the best jobs (travel writer, food critic, or chocolate taste tester all come to mind…) have parts that you wouldn’t like. We have to accept that no job is perfect, but it is possible to find something that you genuinely enjoy, plays to your strengths, and provides purpose and meaning.

The less you like your job, the less likely you are to stay—that’s obvious. The question, then, becomes: how do you find or create a role to love? Both employees and employers have a part in it.

What Employees Can Do

Each of us are responsible for finding or building a job we love. There’s a lot that a manager or employer can do to help build an excellent workplace—more on that later—but everyone is responsible for their own happiness and have the human agency when it comes to work.

Here are some things employees should do when trying to find or build a job they love:

  • Play to your strengths. For each job you consider, look carefully at the job description, and analyse if it allows you to utilise your strengths. Tools like the CliftonStrengths Assessment will help you determine what those strengths are and how you should incorporate them into your roles.
  • Focus on the company and approaches, not just the role. I see examples like this all the time - two customer service jobs have the same job description, but one company fosters a sense of autonomy, ownership, and purpose, while the other gives the employee a script to read. Focusing on the company and their values often helps with understanding their approaches to tasks. If that is unclear, then ask about how they approach situations. Interviews are a two-way street, so hit them with a STAR question (Situation, Task, Action, Result).
  • Seek inclusive workplaces. Look for companies that want to employ you and all you bring to the organisation, rather than just the work you can do. Company websites and Glassdoor reviews are good starting places. And should you get an interview, the questions should include a genuine interest in getting to know you, not just how you respond to situations.  
  • Choose role design over title. Take it from experience, happiness does not just come from a title, but from job design. I’ve had great titles with horrible job design and some… ok titles with amazing job design. I was always happier in the latter. The lesson I learned was - Don’t let your ego get in the way of your happiness.
  • Do what you enjoy. Ask yourself what percentage of the job is doing what you enjoy. When you’re doing something you love that aligns with your strengths, you are more likely to have fun, feel good, and laugh—all of which give you a dopamine hit and endorphin boost. These “feel-good” chemicals help with learning, problem solving, and coping skills.

What Managers Should Do

While it’s up to each individual to choose and stay in a job they love, there’s also some responsibility on the employer. If they care about retention and hiring top talent, employee engagement must be top-of-mind!

However, you can’t make someone love a job or anything or anyone for that matter. Love cannot be pushed onto someone. Love works in the entirely opposite way. Love pulls people towards. So how do you create roles and environments that pull people towards you? Here’s some suggestions on what to focus on:

  • Design roles based on skills. Managers need the right people for the job, which involves aligning strengths not just skills anyone can learn and apply to day-to-day tasks. Design jobs around those strengths so that they attract the right employees. The strengths that work best in the role should be clearly communicated in the job ads and role descriptions.
  • Regular check-ins. Short, purposeful, and authentic check-in meetings are a valuable piece when it comes to employee engagement. Check-ins allow employees to express their challenges and needs, and it gives the employer a chance to address them. Or, as this article puts it: “Check-in meetings reinforce key drivers of employee engagement.”
  • Provide learning and development. Opportunities for growth, knowledge, and development shows employees that they are valued. It also instils a sense of purpose and meaning into the work. Studies back this up, too—74% of workers in one study felt they were not achieving their full potential due to a lackof development opportunities.
  • Just ask. One of my favourite sayings is “closed mouths don’t get fed”. So much of employee engagement comes down to simple, genuine conversation. Ask employees what percentage of the job they enjoy, and then focus on designing the work to increase that percentage.

I’m passionate about all-things employee engagement, the future of work, and job design because I want more people to be able to say, “I love my job.” If we can focus not ONLY on each individuals’ skills but also their strengths, and passions, and then purposefully design roles to meet that, we will be well on our way to getting there.

When we prioritise employee engagement and the love of the work, retention will increase, and burnout will decrease. And I think that’s a good reason to keep talking about this.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

‘Fake It ‘till You Make It’ Doesn’t Apply to Happiness
Thinkers360
June 01, 2022

Understanding the Value of Happiness at Work 

If you’re happy and you know it… fake a smile? Not quite how the childhood song goes, but it is something that many of us do each day. Especially for those who work in client and customer-facing roles, the expectation to ‘fake it ‘til you make it’ and put on a happy face is high. And yet, a genuine smile cannot be faked, and authentic happiness can’t be forced.

There is no replacement for a real, authentic, honest smile that comes from a place of true contentment. And, as it turns out, genuine happiness is also good for business outcomes. Happy employees are more productive and engaged in their work, which is a win-win for employees and their employers.

Let’s look a bit more about why ‘fake it ‘till you make it’ doesn’t apply to happiness and why leaders need to understand the value of happiness at work.

Emotional Labour of Faking Happiness

Anyone who has worked a customer service job knows how to put on a happy face at work. There’s an expectation a lot of the time to smile, laugh, and generally appear to be happy when interacting with customers in that type of role.

Faking happiness comes at a cost—it takes emotional labour, which is defined as “managing emotions during interactions to achieve professional goals and conform to work role requirements.” Here are some symptoms of the emotional labour of faking happiness:

  • Exhaustion. It is honestly just tiring to put on a happy face when you are not feeling it.
  • Inauthenticity. There is a lack of authenticity that will come across in interactions between employees and customers, leading to a worse customer experience (CX).
  • Low resilience. Fake happiness is just an act, not a deep truth. Resilience comes from the inside out—how people feel internally and not just what they put on for show.

ROI on Employee Happiness

So, happiness matters. There are several studies to suggest that happy employees have a massive ROI in the workplace. One study found that happy workers are 13% more productive. The study was able to demonstrate a tangible link between reported happiness levels and productivity as measured by metrics like calls per hour and sales conversions.

This increase in productivity will, obviously, increase the positive business outcomes like higher revenue or increased client acquisition. But it also has benefits beyond just productivity and revenue generation. Increasing happiness amongst employees has other positive outcomes, including:

  • Reduced turnover and healthcare costs.
  • Positive decision-making abilities.
  • Better overall job performance.
  • Ambition to develop skills and reach goals.

I mean, it all makes sense, right? Being happy and content makes it easy to work hard and do your absolute best—it’s the natural outcome. So, employees who are happy in their role will bring massive ROI back to the workplace through increased motivation, engagement, and productivity in their work.

A Manager’s Role in the Workplace

Happiness matters, we can see that. So how do we get there? I believe that managers have a huge role to play because they are the ones who directly interact with employees and are setting up the conditions under which people are happy at work.

An important caveat is that, ultimately, each person is responsible for their own happiness. We should all exercise our agency to leave unhealthy environments, have difficult conversations about things that need to change, or work on our mindset so that we can experience gratitude and positivity. So, this is not to say that managers are 100% responsible to make employees happy. Rather, they have influence and authority to make positive changes that naturally improve the happiness of their employees.

This Forbes article outlines a few great ways that managers can increase happiness in their team:

  • Be attentive to employee needs and demonstrate care and understanding. Managers need to value emotional and mental health as well as physical health and performance outcomes.
  • Provide autonomy and decision-making. Nobody likes being micromanaged! Managers should trust their team enough to make decisions on their own.
  • Encourage challenge and development so employees feel like their skills and abilities are valued and needed.
  • Create an inclusive environment where people know they matter to the team and the company.

There’s a cost to fake smiles and inauthentic happiness—the emotional burden for employees leads to exhaustion and lack of engagement. But true happiness can have a dramatic and positive impact on a personal and professional level. Managers need to be aware of this and take steps to start creating a positive work environment that fosters employee happiness. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to see happiness become a KPI for success in the future! It’s simply too important to forget about.

Till next time,

Hooroo

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Tags: Change Management, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Reinvention Roadmap - When You’re Ready for a Change
Thinkers360
May 16, 2022

G'day!

This weeks article was inspired by a quote I saw recently from the amazing Sarah (Stealey) Reed that said: “What you originally set out to do, and what you love to do, don’t have to be the same”.

It got me thinking how much we change physically in our lives. Firstly, by choice, just check out my hair and beard styles in the last 18 months – Man-bun to shaved head to beard to the marvellous moustache.

No alt text provided for this image

And secondly by nature. Did you know that all the cells in your body are replaced every 7-10 years? You become a new person every decade! So, if your body can change into something new, why not your career and life?

We are constantly changing, physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually, as are our passions, experiences, and life circumstances. But sometimes we need to take a radical leap in our careers and lives and reinvent ourselves. This can be triggered by:

  • Life-changing moments, especially losing a loved one, relationship, or dream job.
  • Challenging circumstances like financial distress or a global pandemic.
  • Feelings of stagnation, boredom, or just being stuck.
  • Exciting ideas or creative flares to build or develop something new.

The last two years of the pandemic have driven many people to reassess their lives, jobs, and roles. In fact, in the last year, 1 in 5 Australians have changed jobs and another quarter are planning to leave their current job!

But whatever your reason is for change, it’s helpful to have a reinvention roadmap to guide you through:

1.   Take Stock

Before diving head-first into a radical life change, take stock of where you are, how you feel, and why you want to reinvent yourself. Consider these ways to do it:

  • Talk with trusted friends and family about your options.
  • Seek professional advice from a career counsellor.
  • Tune into your emotions through mediation and journaling.

By taking stock of how you are pre-change, you’ll be better equipped to handle the challenges and changes to come, as well as setting a marker for you to look back on when you get to the future you.

2.   Be Courageous

Change is never easy, even if it’s something you really want. And I know courage isn’t just a light switch you can turn on or off, but I do believe courage is a muscle to be exercised. The great philosopher Aristotle believed that building courage comes by doing courageous acts. You can work on being courageous by taking small, consistent steps towards your goal.

And if you need a boost, look back on your life to all the other times you were courageous: applying for a dream job, traveling abroad, handling conflict, dealing with trauma, asking “that” person on a date or going skydiving! Look back on this evidence of courage in your life and bring it forward into a new season.

3.   Experiment

Nothing is permanent in this world if you don’t want it to be, but some things can stick around longer than you planned… like that bicycle tattoo! That’s why experimentation is so important. Try something out and see if it works before jumping all-in. Here are some ideas:

  • Rent a short-term Airbnb to see if you like living in an area before moving.
  • Start a part-time side hustle before quitting your 9-5 job.
  • Buy one new outfit and wear it out before throwing out your entire wardrobe!

Innovation is directly tied to experimentation; to achieve something new, exciting, and different, you have to try things out!

4.   Find Support

This is obvious, but you need people in your corner! Find mentors and coaches to give you encouragement, honest feedback, and practical advice through your reinvention.

And, even more importantly, hold close to the friends in your life who love you unconditionally. “Agape” is the Greek term for “unconditional love”—they’re the people who will stay by your side and pick you up when you can’t pick yourself up.

5.   Accept Failure

When you set out to do something new, you’re not always going to nail it right away. Failing is not inevitable, but it’s possible. You need to have a mindset of accepting whatever happens.

If you fail a new project or idea, see what you can learn from it. And if it does really knock you to the ground, let your support system help pick you back up (#4).

6.   Be Open to Criticism

Most of us don’t like criticism! It can be hard to hear what we’re doing wrong or ways to improve. But constructive criticism can be beneficial to your growth and development.

The Johari Window Model is a communication model to improve self-awareness between individuals in a group setting. It points to the different ways that conveying and accepting feedback can improve relationships. When used appropriately, both sharing and receiving criticism or feedback can help you uncover blind spots or things you did not see yourself.

7.   Go Back to #1

Once you’ve arrived at your “reinvention point,” go back to point number one and take stock again. Compare your starting and ending point by asking questions such as:

  • Have my feelings changed (i.e., more peaceful, excited, motivated)?
  • How has my schedule changed? Are my priorities different?
  • Do I feel engaged in my work and career?

8.   Love Yourself

We already talked about how change is hard and requires courage. So, love yourself and be kind to yourself! It can be easy to talk down to ourselves or negatively compare what we’re doing to what we see around us.

I love LinkedIn, but it can sometimes be a space for comparison, with each person trying to level up in relation to others. Instead of comparison, choose compassion. Compassion for yourself, because we all need to practice a little self-love and kindness.

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Just remember: You’re not the same as yesterday. You’re learning something new and reinventing yourself everyday, whether you choose to do so or not! And, say you do choose to reinvent yourself, then take a deep, inspirational breath, and know, it takes time, courage, and self-compassion.

So, with all that said, here’s to you-2.0 or whatever version you are up to.

Till next time, hooroo.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Future is Hybrid - The question now is where do you get your coffee?
Thinkers360
April 26, 2022

The question now is where do you get your coffee?

This week’s EX Rated article has two very special guest contributors! I recently had two great conversations with Elliot Debinski and Tim Buzza around working from home (WFH) and returning to the office.

To WFH or Not WFH – that was the question.

They both had very different views which reinforced my belief that the future of work is hybrid.

Tim, CCO of Attune, avid flexible work advocate and thought leader caught up virtually over a coffee. Tim, with a freshly brewed Turkish style coffee from his home office in Istanbul. Me, with a less than average instant coffee from my kitchen table in Melbourne. After a brief chat about why I haven’t purchased a coffee machine yet, Tim enthusiastically (maybe it was his high-quality caffeine) explained to me why he loved working from home. 

Here’s what Tim had to say:

WFH is AWESOME and I will never go back to an office.

I have five reasons as to why: 

1.  Time with my loved ones. The last 2 years have taught me that my happiness is intrinsically linked to the quality (not quantity) of the relationships in my life. That is, the small number of deep and meaningful relationships in my life are the ones matter most. Being able to spend more time with my family is main reason I choose to WFH. The rest of this list is just gravy.

2.  Working the hours that work for me. Chronobiology is a fancy term that describes the fact some of us are morning people and some of us are not. In his book ‘Deep Work’ Cal Newport introduced monk mode as the ultimate productivity hack.  Monk mode is the ability to focus on highly demanding cognitive tasks without distraction. For most people early mornings is the best time of day to access monk mode. WFH has allowed me to experiment and design a non-standard workday that maximises my productivity and be present for my family.

3.   Healthy Downtime. When I first started WFH I was not switching off during the day. Back-to-back Zoom meetings had taken over my life. I soon realised that managing downtime was critical. With a little discipline what started out as a challenge turned into an opportunity. I experimented with different reset practices and developed some wonderfully addictive hacks e.g., playing with the dogs, walking bare foot on the grass, watering the vegetable garden and even power napping. These reset hacks have made a huge difference to my workday – improving my productivity, wellbeing, and job satisfaction.

4.   Healthy Food Choices. This does not require a lot of explanation. Preparing and cooking all my meals at home has really helped me optimise my health.  Just avoid the temptation to snack ;)

5.  Cost of living. WFH is cheaper.

Of course, WFH is not perfect for everyone. Everybody’s circumstance is unique, and their needs will change throughout their lifetime. Employers that empower workers to personalise their way of working will be the winners in the post-pandemic world. 

 

Tim provided a pretty compelling case, and I was ready to tell my team I would no longer be coming to the office. That was until I had a real coffee with Elliot – Business Development Manager at Centrical and all-round energising and hypnotic human.

Aside from the fact that Nescafe Blend 43 cannot compete with a Melbourne Magic (best coffee in the world), Elliot quipped that the pains of the pandemic are like a tattoo. It leaves a permanent mark that really hurts at the time however the pain is quickly forgotten, and we often go back for more for some reason.

Here’s what Elliot had to say:

After joining Centrical from my Kitchen table and spending a year isolated on my own without the physical presence of my colleagues around me – it was clear that ‘return to the office’ was for me. The benefits of working on site (in the city) for me are not necessarily being about more productive or efficient. One could even argue that I am actually more productive at home as I’m not wasting time trying to find the best Bahn Mi in town or having water-cooler chats about who is the best sportsman of all time (it’s MJ).

The last couple of years have been a digital overload for me. I’m a total social creature and thrive off the human touch and so that fuel tank ran on empty for way too long. What I like about being in the office is having the physical presence of my colleagues to be able to collaborate and share anything in real-time. It’s less of a headache [for me] not having to send a message on teams or having to jump on a zoom call, just to review something that could easily be done by swivelling the chair around. More on that – even just seeing people in the city affirms with me we are on the return to some normality after such an abnormal two years. I feel way more energised seeing cafes bustling again and sidewalks jam packed during rush hour – the commute to work also gives me a nice opportunity to mentally prepare for the day. Compare that with walking around the corner from home in my filthy dressing gown, still half asleep after conveniently rolling out of bed 10 minutes before the first of many zoom calls. Even that feeling of deliverance when you’ve clocked off for the day is more special when you the step out the office, ride down the elevator listening to your favourite tunes, processing what is next for the evening – perhaps even a little excited about a dinner conveniently planned around the corner from the office with some mates. For me, simply closing my laptop at the day’s end doesn’t feel the same. Oh, and I’ve also fallen in love with the café at the bottom of my building :)

 

Elliot reminded me that we are social creature by design. It’s how we survived when we emerged from caves, and it seems for some, (like Elliot) we are emerging from caves yet again.

What is Hybrid?

As I said at the beginning, both conversations reaffirmed for me that the future of work is hybrid. But what exactly is hybrid? For me it’s not defined simply by the number of days you work from home and the office. Instead, I believe hybrid working is defined by two simple things. Space and flexibility.

Space

The creation of inviting, warm, collaborative and psychologically safe spaces – regardless of whether it is online space or a physical space. My prediction is that we will see a new role create within organisations, something along the lines of Chief Space Maker.

 Flexibility

True flexibility – the ability to choose to work anywhere at a time that suits both the individual and the business contemporaneously. This however requires 3 things: the first (and obvious one), infrastructure both digital and physical, the second, Flexibility from both the employee and the employer and the third and final, communication.

 

I’m always grateful for the real-life stories people share with me around how they engage with work. If you have your own views and experiences that you want to share, then please feel free to reach out to me and we too can grab a coffee, face-to-face or virtually.

The choice truly is yours.

To find out more about what both Tim and Elliot do and how they do it, then you can check out their profiles here: 

Tim - https://www.linkedin.com/in/timbuzza/

Elliot -https://www.linkedin.com/in/elliot-debinski-464097192/

 

See blog

Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Why Are We Still Overworking?
Thinkers360
April 19, 2022

Looking at the Negative Impacts of Overwork and What to Do About it


How common is this scenario: you ask someone how they’re doing, and they respond, “busy.” And many of us are busy because we overwork and log more time at the office (wherever that is) than we should.

But in an era where we are finally recognising output (results, achievements) as more valuable than input (hours worked), why are we still overworking?

There is significant data and increasing awareness about employee engagement and job satisfaction—we know that overworking and burnout are not good. Despite this, employees are reporting some of the highest levels of burnout on record, with Australia and the US leading the charge.

Let’s look at why this all matters and what we can do about it.

Why it Matters: Overworking and its Impacts

The data is clear: employees feel more engaged in their work when they are encouraged, mentored, and offered flexibility. When workplaces encourage work-life balance, employees can dedicate their time to increase the output in the organisation and work to meet the goals, objectives, and vision of the company.

But this utopia of employee engagement cannot be reached if we continue to overwork.

It’s hard to put an exact number on the situation—ABS data shows that Australians may have worked less hours during the pandemic. But when looking globally, and particularly in certain industries like healthcare, there are record-high levels of stress and burnout.

Other data shows that people tended to work more because of the pandemic, with a 2.5-hour increase in the average workday in countries surveyed. And though the pandemic has exacerbated the problem, overwork has been a longstanding problem, as explored in this article regarding a WHO study.

All of this wouldn’t matter if overworking was benign. But it’s not. There are many negative impacts, perhaps most provocatively documented in this BBC article that claims “overwork is literally killing us.” The article documents symptoms of overwork that are detrimental to health, such as elevated blood pressure and cholesterol, and unhealthy behavioural changes (i.e., little exercise, drinking).

Pros of Rest

With such negative impacts of overwork, rest becomes particularly important. Rest is necessary for physical health and your professional wellbeing. Here are the reasons why rest needs to be prioritised:

  • Better concentration and productivity: Our bodies need sleep, it’s as simple as that. Adequate rest each night results in better productivity and concentration throughout the day.
  • Helps to reduce the symptoms of burnout: Sustained overworking can lead to burnout. Rest can help reduce burnout symptoms like low morale, poor productivity, inability to focus, or depression.
  • Clarifies priorities. Rest is more than sleep, and includes spending time with family, pursuing hobbies, or engaging in something you love. Focusing on what you love will help with work-life balance.

Cons of Overworking

To fully understand why we need to stop overworking, let’s look at the cons. Here are the worst consequences of overwork:

  • Negatively impacts physical health: Overworking can negatively impact you physically through elevated heart rate (stress), sitting for extended periods of time, or intense physical labour.
  • Detrimental to mental health: Intense strain at work could lead to fatigue, overeating, insomnia, drinking too much alcohol, depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues.
  • Creates job dissatisfaction: There are diminishing returns to overwork and employee engagement suffers. Employees become more disengaged, lack motivation to work, and decrease in productivity.
  • Cuts into your personal time: Working overtime takes away from our personal and social life. More work means less time for hobbies, less sleep, and less socialising.

The Way Forward

Employees need to communicate their feelings and concerns about burnout, fatigue, and dissatisfaction to employers or managers, who should then work to provide solutions. Here are some ways they can reduce overwork:

  • Encouraging time off
  • Re-delegating tasks to team members
  • Extending deadlines
  • Breaking shifts into smaller time blocks
  • Compressed weeks or fortnights to allow longer periods of downtime

Employees need to assess why they are overworking:

  • Is it to project a perception to others?
  • Is the workload just too high?
  • Is it to satisfy a personal need, hang up or to avoid other life activities?
  • Is it a habit that has crept in over time?
  • Ego?

Whatever strategies are chosen or reasons for overworking, managing it needs to be a priority—overwork is a serious issue. With all the knowledge we have, it’s more important than ever to stop overworking and prioritise health and wellbeing. It matters for employee engagement and it matters for our health; it’s too important to ignore any longer.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Future of Work, Mental Health

Employee Engagement vs. Employee Experience: What’s the Difference & Why it Matters
Thinkers360
April 04, 2022

Employee engagement, workplace culture, employee experience… these are popular captions that show up frequently in conversations about the current and future state of work. Especially given how the pandemic has radically shifted our work world, they’re important topics to talk about.

We hear these words a lot (I mean, I write about them all the time!), but what do they really mean? What’s the difference between them? And why the heck does it even matter?

I’m going to breakdown the differences between employee engagement and employee experience. While connected, these concepts are different. If you are a leader or manager who cares about results, growth, or retention—you need to pay attention. And if you are an employee, you also need to understand these concepts to know what to look out for in a workplace.

We’re going to look at the two concepts in further detail, but I’ll start with the simple definition: Employee experience happens to you; Engagement is within you. Experience is the journey and engagement is the destination.

Employee experience: What it’s all about

Employee experience (EX): the journey. It captures all the things an employer can do to create a workplace that attracts and retains talents. It’s a broad category that includes all the touch points between employee and employer. Here are some areas that impact EX:

  • Pre-hiring phase: Researching a company and the application process.
  • Hiring, pre-onboarding, and onboarding process.
  • The workplace, colleagues, technology, and resources.
  • Work, projects, and responsibilities.
  • Training opportunities and communication.
  • Recognition, incentives, and awards.

The employee experience can be broken down into smaller areas, like those listed. However, the primary reason to look at them individually is to see where leadership should invest time, energy, and resources to improve. To do this, leaders may want to:

  • Collect feedback from employees to determine areas for change and growth.
  • Invest in professional development or training.
  • Implement mentorship programs to develop employees.
  • Complete market research to learn what other high-performing companies are doing.

Like any project, the best way to approach it is to break in down into smaller focus areas. This report by McKinsey organises EX into three broad categories: Social Experience (people, teamwork, socialisation), Work Experience (organisation, control, flexibility, growth), and Organization experience (purpose, technology, environment). By breaking it down like this, companies can take a systematic approach to improving EX.

While it’s helpful to look at different areas, the overall employee experience is most important. A company that is very good at, say, onboarding, but lacks in other areas, is unlikely to retain good employees. Thus, leadership should be concerned with overall employee experience and how it’s impacting each person they employ.

Employee engagement: What it means

If EX is about what the employer does, then employee engagement is about how an employee feels. Do they like their job? Are they productive, focused, and energized with work? What about relationships between colleagues—strong or room for improvement?

Some characteristics of an engaged employee include:

  • Connected to the company, culture, and purpose.
  • Strong relationships with colleagues and general sense of teamwork and collaboration.
  • Intrinsically driven with a desire to grow and learn.
  • Focused, motivated, and interested in their work.

An engaged employee, quite simply, likes their job. They’re engaged in the work and engaged in the workplace. It’s somewhere they want to be and has a sense of belonging and the best part… Engaged employees find meaning in the work they do and they connect it to their own sense of purpose.

Employee engagement is, of course, desirable for all workers. But beyond the personal benefits, employee engagement is highly valuable for company success and performance. Engaged employees tend to perform better, stay longer in a company, and be more creative and driven in their work.

Putting it together: Why it matters

A good employee experience is a step toward employee engagement. Bad experiences drive employees away cutting short the time it takes for them to connect to the purpose of the work. A string of good employee experiences shared by all employees is the core ingredient to a good culture — So things like branding, values, processes, policies, norms and strategies from leadership matter— Done with purpose and coordination will help foster employee engagement. And employee engagement is the end goal.

Studies show that employee engagement has massive benefits for companies. High employee engagement is connected to:

  • Decreased turnover and higher employee retention. Gallup’s study found that there was up to 43% lower turnover in companies where employees reported being engaged.
  • Better customer satisfaction. Engaged employees care about their jobs and will, therefore, provide better service. Glassdoor research indicates that a 1-point increase in the Glassdoor company rating (measuring employee engagement) equals a 1.3-point increase in customer satisfaction.
  • Improved safety and security. The Harvard Business Review reported that businesses that had high engagement scores had 48% fewer safety incidents and 41% fewer quality incidents.
  • Higher profitability. Engaged employees will earn more money for their company; there is a 21% increase in profitability correlated to highly engaged business units, as reported by Gallup.

These reasons are the “business case” for why employee engagement is important. But there’s also a “personal case”: we all deserve to work somewhere we are engaged in our work (regardless of the work) and valued for our contributions.

Employees are waking up to this fact. Given the rise of remote work during the pandemic, employees are realising that they have options. They are no longer location-dependent and can seek out workplaces that give them the employee experience they’re looking for. This is one of the driving factors of the Great Resignation and a reason leaders need to wake up and pay attention to employee engagement.

To sum it all up: Employee experience is made up of actions and environmental factors, controlled by the employer. A good overall EX will Set the stage to produce employee engagement, which is when staff enjoy their work and feel valued at the workplace. This all matters because strong employee engagement is better for people and better for businesses and customers. In a time of great uncertainty, the need for strong employee engagement remains constant and important.

 

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Tags: Customer Experience, Diversity and Inclusion, Future of Work

Your RTO Survival Kit
Thinkers360
March 09, 2022

As we (yet again), emerge from our Zoom cocoons and various degrees of lockdown, organisations are taking stock of their return-to-office (RTO) plans. Employers should be conscious that employees could experience different and new forms of stress. There may be for some, a certain amount of anxiety around the concept of returning to previous, and or new ways of working, engaging with people face-to-face.

Introducing FORO (Fear of Returning to the Office)

Businesses are gearing up to welcome employees back to offices as vaccination rates increase and social distancing restrictions ease in many parts of the globe. Some employees are enthusiastic about returning to the routine of office life to escape “disturbances” at home and see colleagues in real life. However, some are less eager to leave remote working behind.

For many of us, our resilience and mental health have taken a blow throughout the past two years, thanks to numerous and lengthy lockdowns, the cacophony of media attention on COVID and often limited healthy outlets, such as socialising and gyms etc. to deal with the enormity of change that was thrust upon us.

So, it’s no wonder that there is some FORO. It’s unlikely that things will go back to the way they were pre-pandemic and for the most part we should view this as positive change. Covid catapulted businesses forward on the work from home (WFH) front and for many employees this was a blessing. I.T. departments were forced to make it work and now that employees have had a taste of WFH some are reluctant to go back, because they like it and the work life balance it offers, whilst others will be reluctant to return due to fears and concern.

Now I have never been overly germaphobic and I’ll admit that the 3 second rule of food falling on the floor, has on occasion blown out to 30… ok 45 seconds, depending on how tasty the dropped treat was and how many people were watching. But even I have found myself worried about the hygiene of those around me, at shops, or of late, on public transport. I have caught myself getting a tad anxious when someone steps inside my 1.5 metre (5 feet) bubble when queuing for a coffee or when seeing someone not wearing a mask when they perhaps should.

So how do businesses quell the fears of their employees and provide them with a smooth and supported RTO and how do employees best prepare themselves?

It may be obvious, but this will be about getting back to basics. Frequent and clear communication is going to be key, setting out an RTO plan at both an organisational and individual level is a good start. Keeping everyone informed before, during and after the transition will go a very long way toward minimising stress around the unknown.

How About We Just Get On With It?

According to Alicia Walf, a neuroscientist at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, one of the most effective ways to overcome FORO may simply be to get back into it, pointing out that “positive human connections are the most powerful tools for minimising stress”.

To improve health of our brains and control anxiety, she suggests that a return to normalcy after a long period of continuous stress can be a crucial step forward for brain health.

Of course, the message “just get on with it” won’t sit well with you, many internal comms teams or employees for that matter. So, let’s add some science and a personal story behind the positive power of human connection.

Happy Brain Chemicals

Almost three years ago, before all of this pandemic palaver, I made the bold and scary step of leaving the (what I now consider) the comfort of corporate life and started my own business. I went from having loads of colleagues to bounce ideas off, team mates with strengths to compliment my weaknesses and a bunch of amazing humans to lead, to just me, myself and an idea.

It was exciting, daunting, and bloody tough. I had worked hard on branding, a business plan and a website, but, what I had not planned for was the drain on my mental health. I was for the first time in my working career confronted by a sense of loneliness, a sudden loss of a sense of belonging and an ever-increasing amount of self-doubt. Couple all that with an emerging bug from Wuhan and it was a perfect recipe for a trip to a psychologist (another first for me). After learning some handy techniques on how to cope with all these newfound challenges I was also recommended by my trusted local GP to start with some anti-depressants.

At first, the thought of this was terrifying and embarrassing, however when the Doctor explained that it was just an extra boost of serotonin, it made it a much easier pill to swallow… literally. I still wonder why marketeers haven't got onto this one and called them mood boosters instead of anti-depressants... I digress.

Back to the point of the story, serotonin is a chemical our bodies naturally produced when we feel admired, respected and when we feel trust of others. It helps boost your confidence, happiness and so much more.

It's a chemical that can be boosted when we socialise with others and when we exercise, so when you’re isolated (or locked down) and not interacting with others, it makes sense that your serotonin levels could drop.

The other chemical that released into our body through face-to-face interactions is oxytocin. Oxytocin is released into our body when we create emotional bonds with others and also, through physical touch. When oxytocin is released we get the warm and fuzzies, it happens when we spend time with people we enjoy being around and through physical touch. Yes even at work, through something as simple as a humble handshake or well-executed high five!

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So when you or your colleagues are feeling a little FORO remember, there are scientific benefits to being back in the office.

Ok, so maybe by now you’re thinking that you might give the office life a nudge again, but are not sure how to start. Here’s some tips I found helpful which may help you and your organisation too:

Self-care and routine

Start getting into the rhythm of a regular workday week before you RTO to help with a smoother transition. Follow a healthy routine with consistent sleep timings, timely meals, enough physical activity, and even some scheduled relaxation time. You could even start doing what I did by building in some fake travel time, taking a walk around the block before you open the laptop which can get your body and brain familiar with the travel time again.

Start setting your expectations

Look into the COVID safety policy of your office to what’s changed with regards to the physical environment, hygiene and processes so you know what to expect. Ensure you feel protected and comfortable while in the office, and if not communicate your concerns. Being familiar with the policies helped me with lowering my FORO, knowing cleaning practices are being applied along with other COVID safe practices.

Acknowledge the discomfort

You're not a rubber band that can immediately bounce back to your previous way of working. Try to be patient with yourself and with whatever exhaustion, distress, or confusion may come. Give yourself space to process it all. Remember it’s okay to take time to get it right.

Even though returning to the office and wearing masks are big changes in many routines and may be producing feelings of anxiety, it’s worth thinking ahead to the benefits the social engagement will have, such as potentially lowering long-lasting negative impacts of stress.

Adaptability is a crucial part of resiliency to stress, and a practical skill to work on as we adjust to the changing world.

A Note to Organisations – Slow Your Roll

Some companies like Google have asked their employees back to the office, which in my humble opinion, is fair enough. Let’s not forget the investment organisations have put into state-of-the-art workplaces. It sure beats the laptop on the ironing board right? So, you might understand why they want to ensure the investment is being used. Let’s also consider some of the small businesses that stake their survival on office foot traffic. City window fronts have become ghost towns and it's a grim reminder of some of the impacts the pandemic has had on small business. However, organisations that refuse to think the world has moved on or changed is in for a big shock. Forcing employees back to the office full time will quickly see the organisation on the wrong end of the great resignation. Employees will vote with their feet and migrate to companies that get the hybrid model right. So, if you are reading this and are in a position to influence the RTO and are thinking, “great now that we’re open we can just jump backwards a few years”, then let me echo the words of the great Barry White – “slow your roll”. The office is not going anywhere. There will be employees who are chomping at the bit to get back and others with genuine FORO. Breath… The future is hybrid and you will find a way to make it work for you, your employees and the physical space of your workplace.

The Future of Work is Kind

We are in a unique time in history where we can shape how we work, where we work and when we work. This will require immense human change which, requires kindness. Bob Kerry said it best – “Unexpected Kindness is the most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of human change”. So with a blank canvas of possibility in front of us where the future of work could be anything – let it first be kind.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Gamification is Bullshit?
Thinkers360
February 07, 2022

I talk a lot about employee experience (EX), employee engagement, and how I think gamification, when implemented correctly, can help with both. 

However, if you’ve been around this EX-world for a bit and have ever googled gamification, you may have stumbled across this article by Ian Bogost who has a different opinion: Gamification is Bullshit.

And, well, I kind of agree. 

Gamification can absolutely be bullshit when it’s implemented for the wrong reasons and with the wrong methodology. 

But with the right reasons and the right methodology? Gamification can change everything for a company.

  1. Gamification is reassuring

In his article, Ian states that ‘it gives Vice Presidents and Brand Managers comfort: they’re doing everything right, and they can do even better by adding “a games strategy” to their existing products, slathering on “gaminess” like aioli on ciabatta at the consultant’s indulgent sales lunch.’

I agree with this statement, but only because the intent is all wrong. Unfortunately, some VPs and Brand Managers act this way, thinking that by checking the gamification checkbox, they are doing the right thing.

Instead of using gamification as a checkbox or a kudos to the leadership team, it needs to be implemented to engage the team. Gamification should be used to

  • Engage people and enhance interactions.
  • Drive collaboration and teamwork.
  • Tap into intrinsic motivators. 

It is ultimately about improving the employee experience, learning, personal growth and enhancing engagement. The intent of leadership and why they are using gamification matters. It’s not about slathering on too much “aioli,” but carefully introducing gamification to meet desired goals. 

There are a number of large and popular companies that regularly use gamification, such as FitBit for exercise motivation or Kahoot for classroom engagement. The intent behind these companies, and others (yes like Centrical), is to use gamification to meet their intended goals—not to just check some boxes to say they did it.

2. Gamification is easy.

Again, Ian’s words: “Gamification is easy. It offers simple, repeatable approaches in which benefit, honor, and aesthetics are less important than facility. For the consultants and the startups, that means selling the same bullshit in book, workshop, platform, or API form over and over again, at limited incremental cost."

And, again, this is a misinterpretation of the intent behind gamification. If you consider it to be only checking a box, then gamification might be seen as easy. 

But in reality, when applied correctly, gamification is not easy. It draws from the fields of behavioural psychology, sustainable game design, and intrinsic motivation—all complex areas of knowledge that cannot just be thrown together with badges and points. 

Gamification is a science and needs to be treated as such. It’s “easy” to provide a badge to some kind of menial task, but that certainly will not motivate an employee to do better. It can actually be condescending to their intelligence and motivations. 

Instead, use gamification to enhance the innate driving motivations amongst employees. Consider these factors when introducing gamification:

  • What are the goals of both the employee and the company? 
  • Include tasks and responsibilities that provide purpose and meaning, not ones that are simple or menial.
  • Make engagement between employees and with the work the end goal, not the levels, points, or badges. 

If used only as a gimmick or quick fix then yes, gamification is bullshit. It all comes down to both the intent and the application of it. If leaders see it as a hot and trendy thing to do and slap on some flimsy point or badge system, then it only serves to check a box. 

But if employers can use gamification for what it is—a science-based system to increase intrinsic motivation and employee engagement—that’s when the real impact can be made!

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Social Contract or Employee Contract
Thinkers360
January 30, 2022

What Will Win in 2022?

How much of communication is what’s left unsaid? A lot of our daily conversations and discussions centre around norms, assumptions, and ideas—it’s not always just based on what is explicitly said.

This plays into the term 'social contract,' an idea that’s been floating around in the workplace and future of work conversations for the last decade or more. It’s a term for the unspoken agreement between two people, in this case, an employer and an employee.

A social contract might be the reason you answer your emails after work hours or wear one outfit to work over another. There are behaviours that each employee does—outside of any formal employee contract—that are determined by a social contract and workplace norms.

But as we move into an after-COVID (AC) era, are employees still okay with this? Will a social contract hold its weight against a formal employee contract?

Defining Social Contract

I'm talking about a social contract within the workplace, but it goes much deeper than that. The Modern Social Contract Theory comes from some of the great philosophers, including Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau.

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The main point of the social contract theory is best understood as a relationship between individuals and the community that they live in. This can be the community as a country, a workplace, or general humanity.

The social contract theory is most often applied when discussing the authorities and powers of the state. It is defined as: 'an actual or hypothetical agreement among the members of an organised society or between a community and its ruler that defines and limits the rights and duties of each.'

Will Cairns discussed the social contract theory in his recent article, exploring the relation between it and the current pandemic. With all the discussions surrounding vaccinations, wearing masks, and other pandemic 'new norms,' there are questions around the balance of individual rights and community responsibility. He poses two questions:

  1. What individual personal sacrifice do we owe to the state (that is comprised of us)?
  2. What does the state (that exists only as lots of us) owe to each of us?

Now, I’m not here to fill your feed with more talk about COVID-19. But the reality is that it's exactly because of this pandemic that we are, collectively, exploring these ideas. And I can’t help but wonder—are these questions ones we also need to ask of our workplace?

Consider replacing 'the state' with 'the employer.’ Let’s ask the questions again:

  1. What individual personal sacrifice do we owe to the employer?
  2. What does the employer owe to each of us?

These are the questions on many employees’ minds. After nearly two years of constant pivoting, working from home, dealing with pandemic restrictions… It’s been a lot. And employees are wondering: what am I doing this for? Am I willing to sacrifice my freedom, time, and values for my employer?

After-COVID Workplace Changes

The pandemic has prompted many employees to consider what they are willing to give up for their employer. There are a few reasons for that:

  • Employees who work from home have grown accustomed to more freedom and flexibility and don’t want to give it up.
  • Employees who were laid off, temporarily or permanently, have realised how fragile work arrangements can be, even with a permanent employment contract in place.
  • Employees have been asked to divulge personal information such as health status and follow corresponding company policies, which may or may not align with their personal values.
  • Employees are disappointed by the lack of perks or benefits such as childcare and sick days that would have been useful during the pandemic.

All of these factors—along with others such as the labour shortage—are wrapped up in the big conversation around the Great Resignation. I wrote about the Great Resignation before, questioning whether it was a real phenomenon or a bit hyped-up. However, in any case, the conversations and concerns around it are very much real.

Many employees are leaving their jobs to pursue side hustles and the gig economy.

Many employees are switching industries after losing their long-held positions.

And many employees are questioning what they are willing to sacrifice for the sake of their employer.

And like never before, employees are actually interested in the fine print of their employment contracts. They want to know: what am I entitled to, what does my employer stand for and what will be asked of me outside of the formal contract?

The Future of Work: What Will Win?

So what does all of this mean? The social contract—unspoken norms and rules of a workplace—is back on the lips and minds of many people. Just as the pandemic has shifted many things about our daily lives, it’s also shifted the idea that workplaces can demand certain things, 'just because,' and expect their employees to adhere to it.

The social contract will impact our workplaces through three avenues:

  1. Leaders, employers, and managers will need to consider the social contract in relation to employee engagement when attracting top talent. They need to be realistic about what they are asking and how clear that is to their potential recruits. Leaders should expect increased push-back against vague or unclear expectations, and perhaps even outright refusal to complete certain tasks.
  2. Employees will start to read the fine print and re-negotiate employment contracts. Things that are ambiguous, such as vague contract language like 'the employer may from time to time ask you to perform duties outside of your normal hours,' may be challenged.
  3. Governing bodies, whether that be government or industry groups, will need to stay on top of the conversations and concerns around the social contract and expectations placed on each individual. Regulations and requirements will need to strike the balance of personal autonomy and community responsibility when it comes to the workplace and employee experience.

There are other possible outcomes too. Some may simply quit their jobs in pursuit of another opportunity, including self-employed options.

And then there are those who will stay put. The social contract is unlikely to completely disappear and may have a stronghold over some people. We’ve seen this in action over the pandemic: people have a renewed sense of what it means to belong to a community of individuals, and how certain things can be expected from the power-that-be to be part of said community. Some rebel against the very idea, but others thrive under community expectations.

There’s no singular answer or outcome that I can give about what might happen in the coming months and years. I can’t say, either, what will 'win' in a contest between social and employment contracts.

But one thing is certain: the AC era is going to look dramatically different than anything we’ve seen before and the social contract needs to be re-evaluated to build a strong employee experience and attract top talent.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Does Employee Engagement have a place in the GIG ECONOMY?
Thinkers360
January 23, 2022

Is it a match made in heaven or are they incompatible?

The gig economy. It’s a term that barely existed a few years ago but is now a hot topic of conversation. Even the government is getting into it—Victoria announced recently that they have plans to regulate the industry in order to protect workers’ safety and rights.

The gig economy, essentially, is the move towards remote, flexible, and contract work dominated by freelancers and self-employed individuals. 

Employee engagement is the concept that employees are motivated, engaged, and connected to their work. It’s generally discussed within the concept of a company and challenges leaders and managers to increase their employee engagement.

So, I have to ask: is there room for employee engagement in the gig economy? If you don’t work for someone, who’s responsible for your engagement? Does it even matter?

The Gig Economy is the Future of Work

Though it’s hard to accurately identify the entire gig economy workforce, in December 2021, there were 2.4 million Australians who worked on a casual basis, some 23% of the population. This includes workers in a variety of industries and employment structures. 

The gig economy can refer to a number of different things, including:

  • Freelance and project-based work
  • Short-term employment contracts
  • Side-hustles outside of your 'day job'
  • On-demand work such as carshare and food delivery services

Reasons for working in a gig economy are numerous. Some people are actively choosing it for the flexible lifestyle and draw to work from anywhere (just search 'digital nomad' on Instagram, and you’ll understand the appeal!).

But others are forced into the gig economy as they are unable to find regular, consistent, or permanent employment in their chosen field. Studies found that gig workers are often disadvantaged and purposely denied safety measures or protections because of their temporary status.

No matter the reasons, it’s clear that the gig economy will play a huge part in the future of work. And, with that, we’ll need to start adapting long-held beliefs and ideas about work, employee engagement, and worker safety. 

What is Employee Engagement?

I spend a good deal of time thinking and researching employee engagement and how companies and leaders need to step up their game in this area. There are seven senses an employee needs to have true employee engagement:

  • Achievement: Celebrate each person’s goals and accomplishments
  • Purpose: Provide a clear vision for employee’s to align with
  • Meaning and impact: Allow employees to contribute using their unique skills and values and provide them a holistic understanding of why they are doing it
  • Progress: Give opportunities for growth and encourage ongoing learning and development
  • Autonomy: Stop micromanaging, start empowering decision-making and show trust and flexibility
  • Ownership: Allow employees to make things their own by valuing creativity, diversity of thought, culture and emotion
  • Belonging: A culmination of the six others; where everyone feels welcomed and valued

The gig economy definitely checks a few of those boxes. It’s flexible, so there’s lots of autonomy. You can certainly have a sense of achievement, and it’s possible to progress towards higher goals. 

But what about belonging? Belonging is actually built on the other six factors and is the defining sense in employee engagement. I think that it is such an important part, that it will actually reshape the way businesses operate; soon, organisations will have to prioritise culture and employee engagement over customers to be successful in the marketplace.

If belonging is so important to employee engagement, we’re going to have to figure out how it fits into the gig economy. If you don’t work for someone and you don’t work with other people (most of the time)... where do you belong?

Meeting in the Middle: The Way Forward

It seems, then, that the gig economy is kind of, sort of hitting the mark with employee engagement. But here’s the thing: so many businesses only 'kind of' hit the mark. Very few are incorporating all seven characteristics, which is why some employees are leaving those positions for greener pastures in the gig economy. 

The question now becomes, what’s the way forward? If we know that the gig economy is always going to struggle with creating a sense of belonging, where do we go?

I propose two ideas:

  • We keep an eye out for the government regulations on the gig economy. A senate committee has already deemed gig workers’ conditions to be 'not acceptable,' prompting the aforementioned regulations in Victoria. And while those regulations are primarily looking through the OHS (Operational Health and Safety) lens, they may also contribute to a sense of belonging amongst the broader community of gig economy workers. 
  • We explore the meaning of belonging and look for new methods to achieve it. Along with the rise of the gig economy are other trends such as coworking spaces, online communities, and mentorship programs. These could all create a sense of belonging for gig economy workers if utilised correctly. Employee engagement may not come from being part of a singular business or organisation, but could still be possible through other creative avenues.

As the gig economy continues to grow, it will be an important part of the future of work conversation. It’s a multi-faceted discussion with many influencing factors. 

In my opinion, the most pressing question, as always, remains: how do we boost employee engagement in order to maximise productivity, mental and physical wellbeing, provide excellent customer experiences, and get back to doing meaningful, impactful work? To answer this, we’ll have to keep redefining just what employee engagement means and how it can be adapted to the new gig economy.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Is a Change of Scenery Really as Good as a Holiday?
Thinkers360
January 10, 2022

Because of the pandemic, most of us have had our suitcases tucked away for the last two years. Traveling has been near-impossible—data shows that in October 2019, over 900,000 Australians left the country, whereas in Oct 2020 and 2021, it was under 15,000 people. Many employees do not want to use their vacation time on something that is less than ideal—if you can’t get away, why take a vacation?

This lack of international travel coincided with the rise in remote work, where employers and employees alike have realised that they can work from just about anywhere. Getting out of the city or where you live and exploring a new place suddenly became possible without taking off time from work.

Enter the workcation. It’s work with a side of vacation, or working while kind-of-vacationing. This new phenomenon is on the rise, embraced by both workers and companies.

But is a change of scenery really as good as a holiday?

Pros of Workcations

Workcations or hybrid holidays have a number of positives them, the biggest being the chance to get away from the normal day-to-day and have some fun while still getting work done and bringing in a paycheque! Here are some other pros:

  • Higher employee engagement. Employees feel like they’ve been stuck at home for two years, so new scenery can boost employee satisfaction and engagement.
  • Potentially good for tourism. Most countries are struggling after the pandemic decimated tourism industries, so this new trend may boost struggling industries.
  • Projects don't stop when key dependencies are not available. If people can work while on vacation, key projects don’t need to be on a two-week hold while the key person is away.
  • More attractive place to work. More employees will be attracted to jobs with flexible work schedules and the ability to travel and work at the same time. They will also love their new office at the beach or a fun, new city!

Cons of Workcations

Despite these positive attributes of the working holiday, there are some downsides that also need to be considered. The cons of workcations include:

  • Increased leave liabilities for businesses. This is the amount that the employee is owed upon leaving a position based on the leave they have accumulated.
  • Lack of a real break and inability to switch “off.” Some employees might not be able to get the mental health break they need because there is no true downtime.
  • Distracted from work. Employees may be distracted by their new environment and, therefore, just not do their best work.

The Way of the Future

This is a fairly new phenomenon and it will be interesting to see how it unfolds as we put the pandemic behind us. However, the idea is that this is a positive shift for employees, away from being measured in hours and time-in-office. Instead, their output and results will matter, both of which can be achieved pool-side.

A workcation can be an effective and rewarding way of measuring employees and may inspire them to be more productive. The flexibility of a workcation is a way to reward employees and allow them autonomy over their schedule and lives, ultimately creating a win-win situation.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Is the King’s Reign Over? Culture May Usurp Customer as Businesses’ Top Priority
Thinkers360
December 12, 2021

There’s an old adage that gets tossed around in the business world: Customer is King. All business activities and decisions are based around keeping the customer happy. This was the focus during the Age of the Customer, a concept popularised in the early 2010s and dominated the last decade of business.

But is the King’s reign now over? We are moving into an after-COVID (AC) world that will look dramatically different in 2022 than it did in those pre-COVID (PC) days where face masks were not even available, let alone a daily fashion choice.

The AC world will look different for a variety of reasons, because of both macro-scale economics reasons and personal life changes. There is already a dramatic labour shortage that is creating real challenges and opportunities in the workforce. Challenges for businesses to keep up operations, but also an opportunity to step into a new era, where culture is king.

Business culture refers to a feeling and an ethos of a company—you know who they are and what they’re about. In the AC era, both employees and customers will seek companies that have a positive, ethical, inclusive, and sustainable culture.

Customers will look for this because they want to feel aligned with companies, they give their money to and they want a good customer experience (CX). Employees desire strong company culture because now, perhaps more than ever, they need to be engaged and excited by their work. Even before the pandemic, culture was important to employees—a study by Glassdoor in 2019 shows that 77% of employees consider a company’s culture before applying and a staggering 56% say that it is even more important than a salary.

The only question is, how do companies create such a utopia to recruit and retain high-quality talent? I believe there are six key ingredients that work together to build a positive, inclusive culture:

  1. Create a sense of purpose. For employee’s to be aligned with the company’s mission and vision, it needs to be first made clear. Companies should develop clear language around their mission, communicate it to employees, and invite them to be part of it.
  2. Build a sense of meaning and impact. No matter their role, every employee wants to feel like what they do on a daily basis Companies need to value each employee’s skills, knowledge, and abilities, and let them use them to contribute in a meaningful way.
  3. Celebrate individual achievements. There should be a healthy amount of celebration over individual goals and wins—even if they fall short of company goals. No, this isn’t just giving someone a participation ribbon. Instead, it’s recognising everyone starts at a different baseline, and yet each person can make great achievements.
  4. Give employees a sense of progress. Everyone hates the feeling of being ‘stuck,’ whether in a task or at their job. Progress is important for morale and productivity, so companies need to give their employees a sense of where they’re going. Clear direction however should not be prescriptive and lineal because careers for most people are not straightforward like a highway… they’re an adventure! Companies need to remember that plans might change, but that shouldn’t stop them from clearly laying out various options for next steps.
  5. Provide autonomy. Autonomy is the ability to make appropriate decisions over one’s scope of work, at any level in the company. This can build trust in both parties because it doesn’t undermine the other person’s skill or ability. Consider, too, the impact it has on creativity! Someone who is allowed to make decisions is allowed to innovate and create—a highly desirable trait for any company. After all, ‘Creativity is seldom manufactured— instead it is found in one’s own freedoms.’
  6. Give employees a sense of ownership. Autonomy goes a long way to building a sense of ownership, but it is more than just that. Leaders and managers need to sometimes be hands-off and let people make mistakes so that they continue to learn and grow. Learning should also be celebrated in and of itself, rather than just the tangible ‘wins.’ Anyone who puts in effort and time to learn and increase their knowledge and understanding deserves recognition.

These six points are key ingredients to creating a good workplace culture, and together they create a sense of belonging. Humans naturally seek belonging from their external environments, especially those that they spend significant time in like a workplace. Employees who feel a sense of belonging are more productive and deliver higher customer satisfaction—both of which are good for business!

Employees are coming out of a difficult season and approaching work in the AC world will require businesses to focus on creating a strong workplace culture that provides a sense of belonging. Ultimately this will lend itself to engaged, productive employees who deliver strong customer experiences. So, is the reign of King Customer over? Well, they will at least have to share their throne with culture as companies learn to navigate the new world of work.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Welcome to the Age of the Employee
Thinkers360
December 05, 2021

Why EX is the Foundation to Great CX and Business Performance

We live in an ever-changing world, where new technologies and inventions have the power to fundamentally shift both business and society. When it comes to the relationship between businesses and their clients or customers, these shifts through the decades are pronounced.

It is widely understood that the last decade has been the Age of the Customer. Two studies were published by Forrester Research in 2013 that highlighted the impact and use of technology that signalled a change from the previous Age of Information.

The Age of the Customer of the last decade is defined by the power that customers have. Customers are more connected than they have ever been and are able to direct businesses through their power and influence on social media and third-party review sites. Just think—today, companies can be “cancelled” over a PR blunder or have a hard time getting business with poor Yelp reviews.

Businesses have responded by trying to create an amazing customer experience (CX) with things like personas, customer journey maps, or customer experience maps etc. They have embraced two-way communication on social media and work hard to earn their client’s trust and repeat business.

Focusing on CX is great and absolutely necessary, but the foundation of every CX is EX—the employee experience. CX led organisations continue to be market leaders but one thing that is often unseen, is that they are also great places to work. That’s because CX led companies have realised that although CX is the head, EX is actually the neck and will turn CX wherever it decides. Happy, engaged, and knowledgeable employees will be able to elevate the CX in a way that disengaged employees will not.

I propose that we are entering into a new age: The Age of the Employee. After all, it’s only taken a decade and a pandemic for businesses to understand that every CX starts with great EX. Companies need to focus on their EX or they will no longer be competitive in the after-COVID (AC) era.

Business through the Ages

Let’s take a step back for a moment. The last century has seen massive shifts in technology, business, and society. We don’t even really need to state that—it’s obvious. What’s less obvious is the nature of these shifts. A lot of experts and analysts have divided the last century into different “ages,” with each having a unique and defining feature. A summary of these ages are as follows:

  • Early 1900s—Age of Manufacturing: At the turn of the century, mass manufacturing took the world by storm. Companies like Ford or Boeing revolutionised the markets with their mass-production capabilities.
  • 1960-90—Age or Distribution: Increasing global connection and transportation networks allowed companies like Wal-Mart to distribute products far and wide, no longer limited to their immediate geographical markets.
  • 1990-2010—Age of Information: The rise of the computer and Internet made it possible for those who could control information to control the flow of goods and services, such as Amazon or Google.
  • 2010-2020—Age of the Customer: Social media and other internet-based platforms allowed customers and consumers to discuss their experiences with brands, shifting the power into the hands of customers. Businesses had to shift their priorities towards keeping the customer happy in order to avoid negative reviews.
  • Now—Age of the Employee: Precipitated by a global pandemic, employees have found their voice and expressed what they want in a workplace. Businesses will need to reckon with changing employee-employer dynamics and understand and invest in EX, as the foundation for CX.

The Age of the Employee

As mentioned, the Age of the Employee has been ten years plus a pandemic in the making. While the last decade of focus on customers has gotten a lot of things right, it has also missed a fundamental piece: behind every CX is an employee—a real human who is interacting with that customer and making a positive or negative impact on them.

Focusing on CX cannot be a siloed pursuit as it is inextricably intertwined with EX. Companies are slowly coming to terms with this and initiating employee care or engagement initiatives.

Then the pandemic came. And everything shifted.

For the first time, employees were asked to do something remarkable—work from home in the midst of an uncertain global pandemic. Some people struggled and some thrived with the work from home set up. But, as a collective, employees found their voice.

Employees felt like they could, finally, prioritise their health and family over work. They had additional free time without normal commutes to purse hobbies and side hustles. Pandemic losses caused people to re-think priorities and things that are important. They became comfortable working in pyjamas.

These shifts are monumental. Any company that thinks they can just call back their employees and things will maintain status-quo are sorely mistaken. The pandemic has given a voice to employees and, now that they have found it, they are not going to be silenced.

Businesses have two options: ignore the new-found voice of employees and try to pretend the pandemic didn’t happen, or listen to the voices asking for change and make real investments into EX and employee engagement. I think most people will agree that the latter option is the best choice: it’s time to embrace the Age of the Employee.

How to Invest in Employees

There are a number of strategies that businesses need to implement in the AC era to focus on employee engagement. And, while the pandemic is making these changes an urgent necessity, it’s important to recognise that they are a long time coming. Ignoring EX in the pursuit of CX has been a major oversight of the last decade. It’s time to merge the two and realise that they work towards the same aim.

Here are some of the ways companies can invest in their employees as people, creating a holistic EX that boosts engagement, productivity, and efficiency. Companies should invest in:

  • Continual learning and knowledge acquisition. The more employees know, the more invested they will become in the products and services. This leads to more engagement on their projects and high-quality CX.
  • Corporate child care and family benefits. Children were also affected by the pandemic and became accustomed to their parents working from home. Corporate childcare is an option for employees who want to stay closer to their children and it provides more flexible arrangements.
  • Technology. The pandemic highlighted digital inequity as employees moved to WFH arrangements. Companies need to invest in both technology and coaching to allow all employees access to what they need to be effective and comfortable in a WFH setting.
  • Physical and mental wellbeing. The pandemic took a toll on everyone’s health, both physical and mental. Companies need to recognise this and invest in it. Specific focus should be given to creating open and psychologically safe spaces for all employees; DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) needs to be at the forefront.
  • Employee portfolio careers and side-hustles. Employers need to accept that their employees have been pursuing new hobbies and side-projects during the pandemic. Flexibility towards this signals value and care to employees.
  • Physical premises. People have been cocooning for the last 2 years and are going to need some enticing out of the comfortable surrounds they have created. Investing in and refurbishing physical premises will help entice employees to embrace coming into the office. Make it comfortable, just like their home is.
  • Autonomy. Employees who are given autonomy in the workplace are more innovative, creative, and have a greater capacity for problem-solving. Businesses need to prioritise this to maximise the potential of their employees.

The Age of the Employee is an extension of the Age of the Customer and has been precipitated by the pandemic. It presents an opportunity for businesses to stay competitive in the AC era by honouring and valuing their employees’ new-found voices, but it will also make all the difference in their CX.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Great Resignation: Hype, Fact, or Awakening?
Thinkers360
November 28, 2021

The Great Resignation—it sounds pretty serious, doesn’t it? It’s likely that many of you reading this have heard this term thrown around in the past few months. The Great Resignation is used to discuss the (apparent) influx in resignations as employees are called back to work in the After-COVID (AC) era. This phenomenon has been covered extensively by the media, such as in this article in the Harvard Business Review.

The data from the article shows that attrition rates in some industries is upwards of 30% during the COVID-19 period. Another 57% of respondents in a survey indicated that they would consider taking a new job in the upcoming year. Those number are high—they seem abnormally high. People appear to be leaving their jobs in droves, leaving employers scrambling to find good talent to replace them.

But what if I told you that this level of turnover is not new? In fact, it’s been this way for a long time.

Data from Fifth Quadrant in 2018, firmly in the Before-COVID (BC) era, shows that turnover rates in the Australian financial, services, and consumer products industries were over 50%. If this was the case BC, why are we so surprised to see high attrition AC?

If you take a critical look at this BC data and compare it to the never-ending articles and discussion about The Great Resignation, you have to ask: is it hype, fact, or is everyone just waking up to what has been going on for years?

High Attrition Rates are Not New

Despite what many people are saying, high attrition rates are not uncommon. As mentioned, the Fifth Quadrant 2018 report indicated that BC turnover was high, with upwards of 50% of employees in some industries resigning from their jobs.

Part of the reasons that these AC statistics about employees leaving are so shocking is because we were at a virtual standstill as a society for nearly two years during the pandemic. Most people stayed put in their jobs, recognising it was a turbulent time and grateful for any employment as many others were laid off. The Australian Bureau of Statistics show that the period from February 2020-2021 (peak pandemic) had the lowest annual job mobility rate on record—7.5% of employed people changed jobs, lower than it has ever been.

Now that we are back to normal(ish) in the AC period, things are returning back to normal: people are evaluating their jobs, overall satisfaction, and life circumstances—some of those evaluations lead to resigning from their positions. The same data-set mentioned about indicates that job mobility was higher in the BC era, with 8.1% of employed people switching jobs in the year prior to the COVID-19 pandemic (February 2019-2020).

Work From Home and Other After-COVID Changes

High levels of attrition and people leaving their jobs is nothing new. It’s a long-established pattern, especially in some industries with low employee engagement and job satisfaction. The hype of this supposed Great Resignation is that we are more aware of the changes in work because of the pandemic. New factors like work-from-home (WFH) have dramatically influenced how we do work and has led to another factor that impacts employee retention.

People leave jobs for all kinds of reasons. Some of the most common BC reasons include:

  • Changing personal circumstances.
  • Limited opportunities for growth and promotion.
  • Poor renumeration and benefits.
  • General dissatisfaction.

These reasons will always be there and are still relevant in the AC era. What the pandemic did, however, was add a few other reasons for employees to hand in their resignation:

  • Companies that won’t allow WFH any longer.
  • Employee voice no longer considered (some employees experience increased agency and decision-making around the pandemic and certain restrictions or workplace changes).
  • Personal discomfort to return to work due to health concerns or other personal reasons.
  • Pursuing hobbies and side-hustles picked up during the pandemic lockdowns.

There is no doubt that these factors, especially the first one, are a significant reason that employees are quitting their jobs. But are these factors increasing the overall level or resignation? Or are they simply additional reasons to add to the mix?

Given the statistics, it appears that the latter is true—employees are resigning at a rate comparable to the BC era, but just have different reasons and rationale to do so. The Great Resignation is, effectively, a return to BC ‘normal.’

Moving into the Age of the Employee

The debate about whether the Great Resignation is hype or fact will continue to rage on. In the end, though, it doesn’t really matter. The truth is that high levels of attrition and employee resignation are problematic no matter the cause.

Whether they are leaving because they are not getting a promotion (BC reason) or they aren’t allowed to work from home anymore (AC reason), the underlying influencer is the same—lack of employee engagement and poor attention to the employee experience (EX).

We are moving into a new age—the age of the employee. It’s one where companies will have to prioritise EX or face the consequences of high attrition and poor performance. The age of the employee has been a long-time coming and the pandemic has helped precipitate this change. Employees have found their voice during the pandemic, speaking up about things that are important to them, including flexibility (WFH), work-life balance, well-being and increased emphasis on workplace safety.

So, what can employers do to prioritise EX and stem the return to normal attrition? Here are a few of the top things to focus on:

  • Continue to engage employees by allowing them to use their new-found voice. Value the opinions and ideas of each employee, no matter their level in the company.
  • Provide autonomy, both over their job responsibilities and work arrangements (i.e., WFH and flexible schedules).
  • Create a sense of belonging and safety in the workplace by embracing DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) initiatives.
  • Focus on physical and mental wellbeing.
  • Tie work to a sense of meaning and purpose.

Instead of getting hung up about the Great Resignation and whether or not this is a real phenomenon or just hype, we should focus in on why employees leave. Companies that focus on employee engagement and embrace the new age of the employee will be able to mitigate and decrease attrition rates.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

Understanding your EX:
Thinkers360
November 12, 2021

Let’s talk about your EX. No, not a past romantic interest, but the employee experience. Employee Experience (EX) and employee engagement are increasingly being placed at the foreground of company operations but what does this mean, why bother and where do you start?

Leaders need to focus on EX because it helps them understand their employees as people and not just a number in the company. Ultimately knowing your employees will go a long way to achieve positive company results.

There are two important building blocks that you should know and understand when trying to create a better employee experience. First, it is important to create a sense of belonging by embracing diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Second, leaders need to understand and tap into intrinsic motivators for each employee, inspiring them to take action, be creative, and work at a high level.

Why Employee Experience Matters

EX determines employee engagement and this matters on both a personal and company level. For some time now companies have understood that customer experience (CX) strategies are also good for business. Now CX leaders are realising that every CX starts with a good EX. Leaders who care about their employees will create a space where they are happy and engaged. But it goes beyond individual job satisfaction. By understanding the full employee experience, companies can work towards a highly engaged workforce.

Engaged employees are those who have sense of purpose, meaning, progress and belonging, feel challenged, and are given autonomy. This results in higher focus, productivity, creativity and satisfaction in their job, all of which will ultimately benefit the company.

Consider, for example, an employee who has been given creative license and autonomy to work on a certain project. That employee is likely to become highly engaged in their work, utilising their creativity and passion. So, when the time comes to engage with clients in the sales process, that employee is going to create an amazing customer experience (CX)—they are passionate about the product, with deep knowledge and ownership. The strong CX leads to happy customers, which leads to loyal customers, which helps the bottom line. Employee engagement starts a virtuous cycle that supports EX, CX, and the bottom line.

Employee engagement and experiences are not simple topics and there are a lot of different avenues to discuss. However, I want to focus and share on two foundational blocks for creating positive EX in a company: creating a sense of belonging and tapping into intrinsic motivation.

Diversity and Inclusion for Employee Engagement

One of the most important determinants of employee engagement is whether employees have a sense of belonging. Belonging is defined as ‘an affinity for a place or situation.’ Other terms for affinity include like-mindedness and kinship. The starting point for any company is to ensure that they are a safe, open space for every employee, no matter their background or identity.

DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) initiatives have become increasingly more common in the workplace in attempt to address the racial, gender, or other inequalities that are unfortunately still prevalent in society.

While DEI is more common today, it can still be a sensitive topic. It challenges each person to embrace differences and confront their unconscious biases, which are judgements or behaviours we are not aware of. This moves us out of our comfort zones and can be uncomfortable. But, if a leader is committed to creating a sense of belonging, embracing DEI and managing unconscious bias is a necessary first step.

Here are some strategies:

·      Be accountable to your own biases as a leader. Be proactive in trying to understand those around you and take steps to listen and learn from others.

·      Listen to others and give them space to express themselves. Practice active listening and truly seek to understand.

·      Call-in, don’t call-out. Try to take the opposite route from today’s ‘cancel culture.’ Instead of calling someone out for their mistakes, call them in. Ask questions like ‘When this happened, what did it mean to you?’ or ‘This is how it came across. What did you intend for it to mean?’

·      Be okay with not always getting it right. Acknowledge where you are wrong and make changes.

·      Amplify voices of those who are ignored. Make a conscious effort to amplify the voices that may be ignored or historically undervalued.

This is just the tip of the iceberg of DEI, however implementing these tips as a leader can help you become more aware of your unconscious biases and take some steps towards building a safe space of belonging for employees. Make sure you continue to educate yourself about DEI from professionals and educators to take it to the next level.

Building Intrinsic Motivation

If embracing the diversity of each individual is the baseline for creating a sense of belonging, then understanding intrinsic motivators is the baseline for productivity in a workplace. Companies are missing out on real productivity and creativity from their employees because they don’t understand the psychology of motivation and what makes people do what they do.

Intrinsic motivators come from within a person, I like to think of it that they come from your heart’s desires not from what your eyes envy. Some intrinsic motivators may be a desire to do well, feel a sense of progress, a love for a certain task, a sense of connection and more autonomy. In contrast, extrinsic motivators are about gain and the avoidance of loss and include financial and tangible rewards, status and fame, all whilst trying to avoid consequences.

One downfall of extrinsic motivators is that they tend to be one-size-fits-all. While one person might love a free lunch, another person doesn’t because of their food allergies. One person may really want an iPad whilst another is not interested in technology or already has one, and we all perceived the value of money differently depending on our personal situation. $25 may be a lot to one person but to another it only represents a small value. Extrinsic motivators may work in the short-term or as I like to say they are loud and get attention, but they do not have long-lasting impacts like intrinsic motivation. In contrast, intrinsic motivators tap into deep human desires, such as feeling valued, purposeful, and recognised—what we all desire. These intrinsic motivators tend to be quieter but have a long lasting and powerful effect.

To increase intrinsic motivation and, in turn, employee engagement, focus on these factors:

·      Embrace Purpose by allowing employees to develop goals with personal meaning.

·      Release control over every minute detail and allow employees autonomy and decision-making power within the scope of their role.

·      Build cooperation into the workplace so that everyone can receive satisfaction from helping others.

·      Embrace creativity and innovation by providing space for curiosity.

·      Give recognition and be generous with praise and affirmation for accomplishments.

To Wrap Up

Employee experiences determine employee engagement and is something that leaders need to be thinking about. A workplace that is safe and open to all employees creates an important sense of belonging. DEI initiatives and conversations that force leaders to confront unconscious biases is a powerful first step towards achieving this.

In addition to focusing on this sense of belonging, leaders need to find ways to boost intrinsic motivation. What motivates their employees towards success, innovation, and productivity? Building a workplace that empowers employees to take on challenges and be more autonomous, leaves room for failure, gives recognition regularly and encourages creativity.  These are all positive first steps to tapping into the power of intrinsic motivation to achieve employee and company success.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Intersection of Engagement and Productivity
Thinkers360
November 08, 2021

Engagement and productivity are uttered almost daily in the business community. Most people understand they are related, but mistakenly think that the road between engagement and productivity is linear. In fact, they are part of a complex, interconnected web.

Leaders and organisations that care about performance of their companies need to care about engagement and employee experience (EX). They cannot focus single-mindedly on productivity without addressing the underlying factors. Leaders need to zoom out and look at the bigger picture that connects engagement to productivity to business success.

Virtuous Cycle of Employee Engagement

When the term “engagement” is used in the marriage context, it’s understood as a mutual promise and expression of intent. However, when it’s used in a work context, we often only consider one side—an employee is either engaged or not. But employee engagement is also two-sided. Employers have a responsibility to understand and focus on employee engagement.

It begins by understanding what employee engagement looks like. The starting point for any company is enjoyment—employees need to like their work and enjoy what they do on a day-to-day basis. From there, it kicks off a virtuous cycle of employee engagement:

  • Employees who enjoy their work have a thirst for knowledge and are curious.
  • Curiosity leads to greater knowledge and understanding.
  • Increased understanding develops a sense of value for the knowledge.
  • It is natural to care about what a person values.
  • Care leads to pride in the work or company.
  • Pride continues to increase enjoyment and continues the cycle.

All of these factors work together to increase employee engagement by tapping into natural intrinsic motivators. When someone loves their work, they will naturally start diving deeper to learn more and develop that sense of value, care, and pride over their work.

Connecting the Dots

Employee engagement is a multi-faceted experience, as we’ve just seen. But, as it continues to run its own virtuous cycle, it begins to connect with productivity, customer experience, and business success.

An engaged employee has deep knowledge and understanding about their role, responsibilities, and the company’s products and services. Knowledge naturally increases quality of work, efficiency, and productivity, as they are able to work more effectively.

Another intersection is by creating excellent customer experience (CX). An engaged employee values and cares about their work, which will help them create a good CX because they are authentically seeking to help and serve customers. Excellent CX will lead to loyal customers and business success, but it will also develop a sense of pride for the employee, that they are part of a company that cares for customers well.

Increased productivity and strong CX will both lead to business successes. An effective leader will recognise all of these intersections and understand the value of continuously re-investing back into employees. Creating a good EX is not a one-time thing, but requires continual work and prioritisation.

It might seem confusing to untangle the web of connections between employee engagement, customer experience, productivity, and business success. However, the fact that they are connected is actually a message of hope: if you prioritise these things in your company, you will set off a chain reaction of positive changes in the company.

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Tags: Culture, Customer Experience, Future of Work

The Future of Work: Post-COVID-19 Trends and Technology Innovation
Thinkers360
October 25, 2021

Starting with the obvious here: COVID-19 has fundamentally changed the way we live, work, and play. The pandemic has made all of us into futurists, wondering and predicting what the world will look like in a post-COVID era.

There’s no doubt that the future of work will be different. How, exactly, is yet to be seen. Based on recent and emerging trends, it seems that there will be changes in three categories: shifts in interpersonal communications, introduction of new technologies, and changing jobs.

Communication and connection

As we emerge from our “Zoom cocoons” over the last two years and return to in-person work, there will be shifts in how we communicate and connect with one another. While it will affect everyone, the Human Resources vertical will be most deeply affected by new post-pandemic dynamics.

Here are some shifts in the future of work from an interpersonal perspective:

  • Potential workplace segregation because of differing beliefs about vaccines, masks, and other topics. Workplaces will need to navigate the tricky balance of competing opinions and voices.
  • Death of the webinar. With many people experiencing video-fatigue, common tools like the webinar might become obsolete in favour of in-person or other methods of communication.
  • Augmented coaching and training for leaders and managers. Many people found it hard to lead a team virtually, without the benefit of in-person communication and body language. There will likely be a rise in assisted management coaching to help get leaders heads out of the spreadsheets and get their hearts back in the workplace.

Introduction of new technologies

Technology is ever-changing and evolving. The pandemic also accelerated technological advances out of necessity. It is likely that we will see an emergence of new and exciting technologies that both aid our work, but may also create new challenges to overcome.

Here are some top technology trends to expect in the future of work:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) explosion. We’re really just at the tip of the iceberg with AI—there is so much more potential for it to be used in our workplaces. The challenge will be how to manage AI in an ethical and responsible way, which will prompt the emergence of new roles and industries surrounding AI ethics.
  • Chatbot enhancements. Already used widely, chatbots can be useful to help automate processes. They are, however, still fairly basic and can be improved on. We may see chatbots become more sophisticated, able to “talk” to a customer in a conversational way. In a recent Linkedin survey it was discovered that people are more likely to share a personal in-depth story with a stranger rather than somebody close to them. Chatbots and in particular, conversational AI could quite possibly find a new home in this space.  

Changing jobs and roles

The lines between work and home became blurry during the pandemic. Many also found extra time to take on new side hustles with their extra spare time. How will this all incorporate back into the workplace?

Here are some of the changing jobs and roles expected post-pandemic:

  • Incorporating the gig economy into the traditional workplace. Managers and leaders will have to become more accepting of the new norms like side hustles and portfolio or gig-based work.
  • Flexible work schedules. Managers will need to learn how to accommodate work-from-home and flexible schedules that so many employees are now used to.
  • New jobs and roles. No one expected a pandemic, and few were prepared for it. It’s likely that business readiness and disaster recovery will become a key role to fill for businesses and organizations.
  • Ethical AI roles. AI will replace many data driven roles. For example many roles in that trawl through previous cases for precendece could be replaced by AI however new roles in AI Law that address the ethics behind AI could be a whole new field.

A futurist knows that you can’t know exactly what will happen, but you can make good predictions based on current trends, which we’ve done here. After all, the old adage rings true: the only thing constant in life is change.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Future of Work

Gamification – A Misunderstood Science
Thinkers360
October 22, 2020
Gamification is still a mostly untapped and misunderstood science. For over a decade it has had much scepticism and hype with hit and miss success, however as the craft matures and is understood at a deeper level it is now starting to become a sustainable alternative to traditional ways of measuring and engaging employees from both a learning and performance perspective. Both Gallup and Fifth Quadrant have conducted surveys for the last decade around employee engagement and astoundingly the figures have remained horribly similar with only roughly 25% of employees saying they are actively engaged with their performance. This is by no means surprising given very few companies have done much to change how they train, design key performance indicators (KPI’s) and engage employees. Only now with catalysts like the royal commission into banking and finance in Australia, which demanded large institutions change how they measure and incentivise staff are we seeing a substantial shift to behavioural based metrics. Playfulli, who developed an employee profiling tool, tested with over 65,000 people shows that there are actually 8 motivational profiles across an organisation, of which most organisations only tend to engage two (25%) when designing how employees are measured, reinforcing this notion that only a quarter of employees are engaged. What is Gamification? Gamification is the application of game mechanics and behavioural science into non-game activities (like work) in order to achieve an objective. When implemented correctly it goes beyond simply applying points, badges and leader-boards (a common entry level approach) and instead focuses on behaviours, motivational diversity , employee strengths and micro-learning and tethered to a much wider range of game mechanics that engage the human desire for achievement, progress, purpose contribution, connectedness and belonging. In the past many gamification platforms have tried to portray themselves as the silver bullet for performance and in doing so found short-lived success. Many realised that simply "gamifying" the same old metrics and expecting a different result yielded only short-term success. As these gamification platforms matured, they realised that they needed to solve for the root cause, not the symptoms and thankfully this is now showing fantastic results with those organisations courageous enough to explore the scientific art of gamification. Gartner predicted that 70% of fortune 500 companies will attempt gamification but that 80 odd percent would fail due to poor design. Now once bitten and twice shy there is still some reluctance to try gamification again, however those who approach it in a scientific way and are willing to turn their back on traditional lag metrics are much more likely to see results that will buck the 10-year trend we have been witnessing of low employee engagement. Gamification Back on the Radar Gamification should be on the radar of any organisation looking to drive greater employee engagement and knowledge retention, particularly those with a distributed workforce. Even if they have tried and failed in the past it is absolutely worth another go, because like most technologies and concepts, gamification has matured rapidly from where it was merely years ago especially those platforms that have built in machine learning and AI capability. The Gamification industry has had many resurgences in the past 10 years however it is finally here to stay and with good reason. Gamification has finally matured beyond simple game mechanics designed to drive spending, product use and employee productivity to a full-blown behavioural psychology and motivational design industry supported by tech (not led by it). Gamification and the Future of Work With distributed workplaces a norm and likely to stay that way managers are finding it harder to see employee behaviour and basing coaching on lag measures. Gone are the informal catch-ups, replaced by structured and scheduled video calls - eroding employee trust. Gamification combined with Machine Learning, AI and micro-learning is helping managers by prompting the them with insightful coaching tips, challenges and conversations. This helps say goodbye to the pouring over of data and spreadsheets, structuring and preparing performance conversations sourcing long winded online training modules that are always completed and instantly forgotten. Gamification has long been focused on roles closest to entry level and managers were left with the administration of it (another arduous task taking them away from leading people) but those days too are a thing of the past. Advanced Gamification, real-time performance, lead measurement and micro-learning are going to augment a manager’s activity and ease the admin burden allowing them to build trust and empathy with the people they lead and create repeated positive behaviours that fuel amazing workplace cultures. Seek out a platform that offers Micro-learning, has rich features beyond points, badges and leader boards, has proven machine learning and AI, is easy to integrate, support workplace collaboration and is content rich. Combine this with proven gamification implementation and design experts and you are sure to be among those leading the future of work.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Emerging Technology, Future of Work

Fostering Friendship
Thinkers360
May 23, 2020
There are a lot of reasons why we may or may not enjoy our jobs. From how fulfilling we find the work, to how much money we make, to the hours we’re required to keep, a complicated tangle of factors are involved with determining our job satisfaction and engagement. Due to our tendency to focus on elements such as salary and productivity, we tend to overlook an incredibly important facet of our experiences in the workplace: our friendships. At a time that according to Gallup workplace engagement is lower than ever, it’s essential to take a look at the things that really make us feel good about our jobs, which are often the people we are surrounded with. Think about it this way, what would make you more excited about your job, your KPI’s, the intranet, performance reviews, email upon email and the instant coffee or having genuine, real friendships with your co-workers. Relationships that allow you to connect, commiserate, laugh, and have some fun at work? The answer to me is obvious, and it’s the reason why I want to put a spotlight on the importance of fostering friendship in the workplace. In this article, I’ll explore why it’s so important to have social connections in the workplace, dig into how powerful work friends are, and explain how gamification can help foster socialisation at work. We Are Social Creatures The same way that many animal species naturally live their lives in groups, instinctively choosing to be in each other’s company, human beings too, are hard-wired to be social. We naturally seek the companionship, approval, and guidance of others, and we’ve done so since we were Neanderthals in caves as part of our survival. In fact, our social nature is part of our biology, our neurology. We even have a hormone that exists explicitly for that purpose. Oxytocin, often nicknamed the love hormone, encourages us to bond with friends, lovers, and family members. When we are physically close to others, our brains are flooded with oxytocin, giving us feelings of well-being and warmth that encourage us to connect with others more and more. In fact, studies have shown that oxytocin can even help increase our trust in other people. And it’s not just about warm fuzzies; socialising is a matter of life or death and I’m not trying to be dramatic. Humans need each other to survive, not only to meet our primary physical needs for food, shelter, and reproduction, but also to keep us well. It’s proven: being socially isolated can increase your risk for premature mortality (dying early). Now, I’m not saying that you’ll die if you don’t have friends at work. But I am saying that you’ll have a much better time in the office if it’s filled with at least a few friendly faces. Friends at Work There’s science to back up this claim too. According to Gallup, close work friendships can boost employee satisfaction by 50%. And people who have a best friend in the workplace are more likely to fully engage in their work - by 700%. That’s no small potatoes. There’s a myriad of significant benefits to friendship in a workplace beyond just productivity and happiness. Camaraderie in the workplace can help tie employees together, allowing us to feel like we belong and we’re not in it alone. Friends can help support us in difficult times as well as celebrate our successes, making the experience of going to work much more engaging and livelier. Beyond that, workplace socialisation can contribute to a greater sense of purpose at a job. Your motivation to succeed becomes amplified by the desire to contribute for the sake of your teammates. It makes your day-to-day about more than just yourself and essentially gives you a mission to work toward. The same way that we’re willing to make sacrifices and face challenges for our loved ones, we’re willing to work harder for a team that includes people we care about on a personal level. Friends and Play When we play games, physical or digital we tend to forget the challenges life’s thrown at us. Play helps us disconnect the part of our brain that worries, even if it’s momentarily. Think back to a time you were playing a game, scoring that goal in your favourite sport or defeating the bad guy at the end of a computer game or when passing go and collecting $200. Were you thinking about some work challenge or worrying about the things that keep you awake at night? I doubt it. When we play it lifts us above day-to-day reality. Our innate, human need to socialise can be leveraged by smart, well-designed purposeful play and gamification, to improve employee engagement, retention, and performance. A workplace can use game mechanics like friendly competition, collaboration, exploration and social sharing to foster friendship, camaraderie, and purpose amongst employees. It can be used to give employees a mission within their team, encouraging them to work harder not for the company but for their peers. If isolation is teaching us anything, it’s that we shouldn’t take our social ties for granted. It’s clearer than ever that socialisation is a core motivator. Strategic play and gamification can tap into this and improve employee engagement, help organisations reach their goals and improve individuals’ lives. To find out more about how to harness the power of friendship, strategic play and gamification, contact PLAYFULLi today.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Innovation, Leadership

Connecting from Home Through Gamification
Thinkers360
May 07, 2020
Let me be the 7th billionth person to state the obvious…the Coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented and has changed the nature of how we work, for the foreseeable future. Most of our workplaces have done a tremendous job in ensuring we have the technological resources we need to keep us connected to our respective workplace responsibilities. But now we have a new challenge. Unfortunately, staying motivated and focused can be incredibly challenging during this time. Why? Because while we’re all connected to our work, we’re isolated from the other necessary connections that are essential to mental health and well-being. So how do you take care of the well-being of staff remotely? How do you replicate the natural energy and camaraderie that comes from working in a workplace with other people? Enter HR departments and change managers who are now trying to develop and implement strategies and tools aimed at engaging staff from home. Let’s face it, most business continuity plans don’t include ongoing employee engagement strategies. Employee engagement can be tough at the best of times and now it needs to be done remotely which is where injecting gamification could help. Gamification can help employees form and maintain good habits as well as help employees rally around a common purpose or goal. The honeymoon is over! Turns out for many that working from home isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Previously and certainly before it was forced upon us, working from home sounded appealing to most. There’s no commute and you can work in active wear if you choose without being judged. Plus, there’s nobody around to stop you from combining your daily tasks with keeping on top of house chores or travelling down any YouTube wormhole. Win-win! But now that it’s a daily outlook with an ambiguous end in sight, how do we replace the energy that comes from a team or workplace dynamic? Staying personally connected benefits everybody Of all the elements now missing in the workplace, the most critical to morale is camaraderie. Naturally, these connections have psychological benefits, and increase workplace satisfaction. In fact, a Gallup report found that stronger bonds in the workplace could lead to 7% more engaged customers and 12% higher profit. Plus, there’s the routine and shared goals that are much more straightforward when you have that hub (the office) where everyone gathers. Those relationships can have a positive impact on an organisation’s bottom-line. And during such a challenging time, may make all the difference on whether your business stays afloat. Why gamification is a great strategy Did you know that gamification programs approached with the right intent and knowhow have seen employees say they are happier (88%) and made them more productive (89%) at work? That’s because well designed gamification is a great vehicle to recognise the motivational diversity within an organisation. Furthermore, successful gamification focuses strongly on promoting the camaraderie that will keep your team working not just with each other, but for each other, with common purpose. Through this method, your team can challenge themselves in a controlled, safe environment. There isn’t the worry of failure, but only the prospect of getting better and striving towards improvement and mastery of role. Plus, implementing gamification while your employees work from home will help provide good work habits for when social distancing and isolation is not a part of our daily vernacular and we can embrace being in close proximity with others, once again. So, whilst many companies are cutting costs where possible, there are others taking the opportunity to test out strategies they hadn’t considered or otherwise were planning further down the track. This might just be one of those strategies’ worth testing. To find out more about using gamification to engage employees at home (or in the workplace) contact the team at Playfulli.

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Tags: Customer Experience, Innovation, Leadership

Opportunities

1 Business
Employee experience and innovation through play

Location: Australia / Virtual Global     Date Available: May 05th, 2020     Fees: Contact for a proposal

Submission Date: May 04th, 2020     Service Type: Service Offered

Helping companies improve employee experience, innovate, problem solve and strategise with the power of play.
- Gamification strategy, design
- Gamification product selection, procurement, implementation and managed services
- Lego Serious Play facilitation
- Innovation through strategic play

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1 Speaker
vision, high energy, audacious creativity and mischievous execution that makes him an inspiring and refreshing keynote speaker

Location: Global    Date Available: April 01st, 2022     Fees: 50000

Submission Date: April 13th, 2022     Service Type: Service Offered

Luke is one of the top 25 global influencers and thought leaders on customer experience and employee engagement. His rebellious, unconventional approaches have been attributed to him earning such titles. But it’s his combination of vision, high energy, audacious creativity and mischievous execution that makes him an inspiring and refreshing keynote speaker, podcaster and blogger. Featured in numerous publications including The Wall Street Journal and The Australian. He studied design thinking at D.school, Stanford University and is a certified LEGO® Serious Play® facilitator.

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