|Image by: Rocket Ship|
When I think of badging and achievements in social media apps, I view them as a way to get people to stay engaged. Getting someone engaged has many benefits for those apps that are out in the internet, but in almost all cases the badging is there to help drive revenue. I view badging in a similar manner. Badging is a way to keep employees engaged in a platform or system that has been implemented. But the bottom line is not to drive direct revenue out of the employee but rather to keep employees engaged to drive some sort of business value.
Recently I had debate about how badging in the enterprise can work in the most effective manner. The discussion centered around two types of badges. For this post, I am going to refer to each type of badge as 1) direct badge and 2) indirect badge. In direct badging, the badge is awarded based on a direct action taken by the person. For example, a teacher gives a student extra credit for doing extra work or completing an assignment early. In indirect badging the person is rewarded with a badge based on the action of a second person. For example, a teacher provides extra credit to a student because he received "kudos" from others in the school on the work she did, or how she acted in a specfic situation.
Badging is not as simple as capturing the metric directly, but rather should be done with thought and analyzed to think how someone might decide to game the system. Combining both direct badging and indirect badging will help drive engagement beyond just engagement created by direct badging.
Have you seen badging done poorly? What have you learned from the bad badging and how have you changed things to make it better?