Page 1




Book review

What are you doing about it? P3

Employees want wellness incentives P4

What’s trending P8

“The Power of Full Engagement” P22

MOBILE DEVICES A Closer look p6


driven M A G A Z I N E

pre-flight planning Protect Your Travel Investment

The ROI of MOtivation Loyalty Programs Must Show Results

TRUST BUILDS LOYALTY It's a Competency Worth Learning

GAME ON The Mechanics of Social Games Deliver Greater Engagement

// contents

p. 18

IN every issue 3 From the Desk Of Thomas J. Mahoney, Jr., President & CEO ITAGroup, Inc. 4 News Employees want wellness incentives

Overcoming the Intellectual Immune System Beat your own tendency to reject new ideas by owning them

6 A Closer look Mobile devices in the workplace 8 rewards What’s trending 22 Book Review “The Power of Full Engagement”

features 10 Protect your group travel investment Minimize the “surprise factor” with pre-flight planning 12 Trust builds loyalty It’s a competency worth learning 14 Game On The mechanics of social games deliver greater engagement 18 overcoming the intellectual immune system Beat your own tendency to reject new ideas by owning them 20 ROI of Loyalty Overcome the barriers to show program results

p. 12

« Trust Builds Loyalty It’s a competency worth learning

// from the desk of Thomas J. mahoney, jr.


Driven Magazine Winter 2012

Mark True Editor Molly Van Gorp Christina Zurek Beth Lastine Contributing Editors Amber Baker Graphic Designer Amanda Brend David Horsager Mitch Matthews Brenda Mullins Suzanne Schell Contributing Writers

Headquarters ITAGroup, Inc. 4800 Westown Parkway West Des Moines, IA 50266 Phone: 800.257.1985

Sales Offices Atlanta, Boca Raton, Chicago, Dallas, Des Moines, Detroit, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, San Francisco and the greater New York City area

? Send your questions or comments to and we may address them in the next Driven Magazine.

Follow us on Twitter at



Speak to the Positive! just thinking about today’s economic, political and social environment is enough to rattle anyone’s confidence regarding the future. How we choose to respond to these economic times will ultimately determine if we fight for survival... or thrive! Because we stayed focused, remained flexible and responded to challenges with a positive attitude, ITAGroup was not only able to achieve but exceeded its business plan last year. Our positive outlook was essential to our success; helping us see past perceived barriers to what is plausible, and make it possible. Some of the biggest success stories in business started during tough economic times, no doubt largely fueled by a relevant product offering and a positive mindset: » General Electric was established by famed inventor Thomas Edison during the Panic of 1873. » Hyatt Corp. was founded during the recession of 1957–58.

some organizations to cut back on innovation and service levels— in effect, resting at the side of the road. Not so with organizations focused on a shared vision of what the future can be. They see this as the perfect time to fulfill the needs of the market place. Having a performance-driven culture with strong resolve is necessary to address the challenges of uncertainty. When fueled by historical performance, pride in your team and confidence in your ability to serve your customers, optimism is a precious resource. At ITAGroup, we choose to speak to the positive, to look at the opportunities in front of us and to reach for those that are the most promising. The ones that build powerful relationships, leverage innovative technology and help us deliver remarkable experiences. What are you speaking to today? Regards,

» FedEx Corp. began operations in 1973, during the oil crisis. » CNN started broadcasting during the 1980 recession. Companies focused on the future identify needs and provide solutions. When employees are aligned, belief and attitude provide a healthy dose of optimism to create positive change and move forward. Fear, pessimism and indecision drive

Thomas J. Mahoney, Jr. President & CEO ITAGroup, Inc.

Winter 2012 driven magazine


// news & events

Survey says: Employees want incentives to get healthier And in other news: ITAGroup earns accolades for marketing communications and launches new online awards catalog. Despite Efforts, Employers Falling Short When it Comes to Engaging Workers in Health and Wellness As U.S. companies continue to ask workers to shoulder a greater burden of the cost of health care, new research reveals that consumers want their employers to do more to help them improve their health and get the most from their employer-provided health and wellness plans. And the best way to motivate them to participate in employersponsored health plans is by using rewards. The survey, conducted on behalf of Aon Hewitt, The Futures Company and the National Business Group on Health, was sent to more than 3,000 consumers (employees and their dependents) covered by employer health plans to determine their perspectives, behaviors and attitudes toward health and wellness. As they adjust their plan design and wellness strategies, the Aon survey finds that many employers aren’t aligning these strategies with the goals, needs and concerns of their employees.

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While a majority of consumers surveyed (74 percent) are worried about being able to afford health care, they understand that health improvement programs, along with well-designed, employer-provided health benefit plans, can help them get healthier while also holding down costs. But, the survey reveals that workers are primarily focused on four simple traits for their wellness programs and communication — ease of use, motivation, meaningful structure and information. More than half of consumers in the survey prefer incentives to encourage them to take part in wellness programs (60 percent) or respond to a health risk questionnaire (58 percent).

Jaimee Chism, ITAGroup employee loyalty practice leader, suggests that when designing or changing an employee wellness program, organizations ask themselves three key questions: » How can we ensure utilization? » Can the program platform help the organization and the participant track results for justification later? » What is it going to take to build a culture of wellness in our organization? DRIVEN, Program Communications Earn Eight MarCom Awards With creative themes ranging from the

enchantment of historic London, to the excitement of rock-and-roll performances, to the thrills of auto racing, ITAGroup, Inc. was honored with eight MarCom Awards in multiple categories, including a Platinum award for its new Driven magazine. The program communication awards were for client promotion/ marketing materials, client website multimedia games and contests, and self-promotion. “It’s really a major accomplishment for our company to be recognized like this,” says Thomas J. Mahoney, Jr., ITAGroup president and CEO. “This recognition is a testament to our commitment and ability to provide world-class creative services to our valued customers.” The MarCom Awards are an international awards competition recognizing outstanding creative achievement by marketing and communication professionals, and are presented by the Association of Marketing and Communications Professionals.




MAR 05

MAR 18

APR 29

2012 HCI Human capital summit

5th Annual loyalty expo

RPI annual conference

Scottsdale, AZ

Orlando, FL

St. Louis, MO

// news & events


ITAGroup Launches new State-of-the-art Catalog Platform Always looking for better ways to serve its customers, ITAGroup has launched its new Outstanding Performances® online award catalog. The updated platform is more intuitive, features quick links to the most in-demand information, and includes advanced search functionality. “Our goal with the new design is to make our catalog faster and easier to use for our clients’ busy customers, sales and channel partners and employees,” said Larisa Mendenhall, director, individual awards, at ITAGroup, Inc. In addition to easier searches of exciting merchandise and travel awards, the new catalog features a redesigned custom landing page that incorporates special sections for favorite and “Featured Products,” as well as Travel by Design, ITAGroup’s custom individual travel option. Quick links for “My Account” and “My Orders” are included in the top navigation bar for easy use. In addition, the new catalog incorporates a streamlined checkout process and can readily accommodate international users. “In keeping with our cultural emphasis on charitable giving,” says Mendenhall, “Our program participants can now easily designate a charity to receive their accumulated incentive points.” ■

» imex america— LAS VEGAS TANYA FELDMAN (left) met with Jacqueline Goldy, vice president of MGM Resorts International, during the inaugural IMEX America show in Las Vegas on October 10. More than 2,000 hosted buyers and thousands of visiting attendees met with over 1,800 exhibitors from 147 countries during the three-day event.

» imex america—LAS VEGAS ITAGroup meet up during the 2011 Site Conference held in conjunction with IMEX America in Las Vegas in October. (From left to right) Mandy Espey, supervisor, purchasing & product development, ITAGroup; Jorge Hernandez, Fiesta Americana Grand Los Cabos; Alfredo Ortega, Ritz-Carlton Cancun; and 4 3 Elena Lopez, supervisor, purchasing & product development, ITAGroup.


» Patriot award winners—des moines, IA RICHARD RUE (center), ITAGroup CFO and Iowa chairman of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve presents Department of Defense Patriot Awards to ITAGroup’s Wendy Spoonholtz, Travel by Design supervisor, and Tom Westhoff, director of participant operations, for their support of U.S. Army reservist Nicole Uihamohaano before deployment to Afghanistan.

Winter 2012 driven magazine


// a closer look MOBILE DEVICES

BYOD is coming to a workplace near you Employees are consumers, too, and when they come into the office on Monday morning carrying the latest tablet computer, smart phone or other high-tech toy, they want to use it. It’s called the “consumerization of the enterprise” or “bring your own device,” and it’s staring CIOs right in the eyes. Before you blink, take a look at the following statistics:

of smart phone owners access the Internet or email on their handheld, including two-thirds (68 percent) who do so on a typical day.1




16% Non cell owner

42% Non-smart phone cell owner

of U.S. adults have a cell phone, 42 percent of which own a smart phone.1

42% Smart phone cell owner


“The next generation workforce will demand to bring their technology, or they will simply choose to work somewhere else. Companies that want the best talent will figure this out sooner rather than later.”

— Douglas Haider, Blogger for Computer World


Winter 2012

Employee satisfaction Employee satisfaction jumps 57 percent when they are allowed to use their own, familiar devices at work. » Worker productivity increases 52 percent » Mobility increases 51 percent » Reduces IT costs 36 percent2


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25% of smart phone owners say they mostly go online using their phone, rather than with a computer.1


Android = the most popular smart phone operating system in the United States, with 43 percent of the market. apple = the top smart phone manufacturer, with 28 percent of smart phone consumers sporting an Apple iPhone.3 Pew Internet and American Life Project. May 2011 2 Citirix Systems, Inc., Bring-Your-Own Index 3 Nielsen’s third quarter survey of mobile users 1

Meet Aaron.

Husband. Dad. Devoted Pittsburgh Steelers fan. He’s also your sales partner. And he’s looking for a reason to represent your company, and become a valuable member of your team. ITAGroup helps companies create loyalty among sales partners like Aaron every day. We can do the same for you.

Let’s talk loyalty. 4800 Westown Parkway West Des Moines, IA 50266 800.257.1985 //

// awards What’s trending

Share the loyalty with awards that give back. Studies overwhelmingly suggest that people don’t always give to charity for purely altruistic reasons. They want something out of the deal, too. A loyalty program offering awards tied to charitable organizations gives employees, sales and channel partners or customers the opportunity to act upon this desire. Here is a small selection of the special awards that support various charities from ITAGroup’s Outstanding Performances® catalog.

In addition to these great products, participants in ITAGroup loyalty programs have the option to donate points directly to top national charitable organizations any time they see this icon. 8 driven magazine

Winter 2012

➏ ® Outstanding Performances is a registered service mark of ITAGroup, Inc., KitchenAid is a registered

trademark of Whirlpool Properties, Inc.; Susan G. Komen for the Cure is a registered service mark of The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc.; Swarovski is a registered service mark of Swarovski Aktiengesellschaft; LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the Lance Armstrong Foundation; and Soft Vault is a registered trademark of Oakley, Inc.


Make the world a better place. ➊ The KitchenAid® Stand Mixer is a 10-speed workhorse—it mixes double batches of batters and dough in no time. Plus, when you pick the pink one, KitchenAid will proudly donate $50 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure® to support breast cancer research.

➋ This beautiful Diane Katzman Breast Cancer Charm Bracelet helps support the fight against breast cancer. The 7.5-inch-long bracelet features a delightful mix of rose quartz, freshwater pearls, hand-blown glass, Venetian glass and Swarovski® crystals, all dangling from a silver-plated chain. Each bracelet comes in a signature pouch with a card advocating early detection.

➌ The MIO Motiva PINK Fitness Watch is the ideal fitness and weight management tool with an added bonus that includes a 10 percent donation to the Susan G. Komen foundation. The watch includes stopwatch/chronograph and daily alarm plus a handy MIOSense guide to healthy living.

➍ It’s whimsical and purposeful at the same time. This Good Bead Necklace has an adjustable (up to 22 inches) rope-style chain with a freshwater pearl, Swarovski® crystal and charm that reads “Follow your dreams.” It’s made by hand in the U.S.A. The Good Bead supports World Vision and its programs that provide small business loans to poor women around the globe to help their families and communities break the cycle of poverty.

➎ Oakley LIVESTRONG Flak Jacket Sunglasses are a salute to the ultimate survivor, rendered in the colors of Lance Armstrong’s LIVESTRONG® Foundation logo. You'll find the word “LIVESTRONG” laser-etched near the edge of the lens. The included protective Soft Vault® case has room for an extra set when you expand your collection. When you choose the Flak Jacket sunglasses, $20 is donated to the LIVESTRONG Foundation.

➏ By purchasing a dozen pink Wilson Hope Golf Balls you will have joined The Breast Cancer Research Foundation quest to achieve prevention and move closer to a cure for breast cancer.

Winter 2012 driven magazine


Protect your travel investment with

By Brenda Mullins

Group incentive travel programs require a significant investment. No one wants that investment jeopardized by budget-busting airfares or their first evening’s event getting overshadowed by bad air travel experience stories. You can minimize the “surprise” factor of an airline industry that often sacrifices service for profit by planning early and taking a detail-oriented approach—from pre-sell to contracting to operations.

Aligning Flights with Flyers When selecting a program destination, the critical component in the planning phase is aligning the audience demographics with available commercial air service. There are a limited number of commercial air seats arriving at a given destination. And they’re on specific flight schedules. Your audience’s schedules and how many members of your audience need to connect into a specific flight will impact your airfare (consider also that airlines typically only allow 50 percent of an airplane to be used for group travel). For example, the

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airlines may have 300 air seats spread across three flights to a destination and you have a group of 90 flyers. Two of those flights, however, depart the gateways early in the morning, leaving just one flight option for the majority of your participants, many of whom are traveling across the country. That’s just one problem that can arise at this point in your planning. While planning, be conscious of these budget-busting red flags when selecting a supplier or destination: » Major discrepancies in quoted airfares across suppliers may indicate some suppliers are providing lowest published airfares rather than realistic airfares.

Never base a budget on lowest fares unless you can ticket your group nine months prior to program operation. Even then, it’s risky because these fares may reflect “limited-time” offers, multiple connections and only optimal availability conditions. Also, always verify that the airfares provided accurately reflect where your audience is flying from and to, and that they are not based on less expensive gateway markets. This is a trick to artificially lower airfares while still showing ‘real’ airfares—don’t be fooled by this ploy. » Forced overnight recommendations mean there are scheduling issues between home cities and the destination and possibly an inadequate number of scheduled air seats into the destination. Your average airfares won’t rise, but you will have the added investment of hotel stays and perhaps meals and incidentals for those added overnights. » Recommendations to book blocked air space may be made because the group size is straining the amount of air seat inventory to the destination. In most markets, blocked air space is generally much more expensive than published fares. » Charter aircraft recommendations may be attributed to inadequate air seat inventory for the group or scheduling issues between home cities and the destination. Charters are expensive – you are paying for an entire aircraft (whether you fill it or not) plus the feeder flights to get your participants to the charter departure location. If you must charter, look at what percentage of your audience will fly to ensure you can

fill the plane and minimize expenses. » Fuel surcharges, especially with international and long-haul flights, will fluctuate with the cost of fuel. Are surcharges factored into your quoted airfares?

In the Contract Never be caught off guard by something you overlooked in the air portion of the contract. Key recommendations: Don’t just look at price. Read and make sure you understand the air portion of the contract. If something is unclear, ask questions. Don’t trust a price guarantee. Airlines never guarantee airfares. There are always fluctuations in price and taxes. Treat an air price as an estimate until the flight has been ticketed. Look for the red flags to be outlined in the contract. Are they consistent with what you were told in the planning phase? Are there any drastic changes, and have the impact of these changes been addressed in the budget?

During Program Operation Even in the months and weeks before takeoff, you can find your budget under attack from a variety of angles: Expect updates highlighting fuel surcharges and seat inventory availability. If you notice the price of fuel is rising, ask how it is impacting your program.

Book early to get the best fares. Launch your registration site as soon as winners’ names are available. The later your participants register, the higher the air cost. You should always modify your budget if you anticipate late registrations. Understand your supplier’s flight monitoring services. Make sure you are aware of and comfortable with your supplier’s level of flight monitoring services on program travel dates. These participants are critical to your organization and the only way to ease a typically cumbersome flight experience is to have a supplier that is available to assist with delays, cancellations or emergencies that may arise. Final accounting. Make sure the information you receive is comprehensive and that any questions that arise are answered in a timely fashion. The final key to managing the air budget for your program is knowing what your supplier’s service fees include. Make sure you are getting proper levels of service throughout the planning, contracting and operational phases to minimize surprises on airfare and ensure a seamless program operation. ■


Brenda Mullins is a participant experience supervisor at ITAGroup.

Winter 2012 driven magazine


Trust Builds Loyalty People seldom talk about trust as a competency to learn and practice. That’s changing. By David Horsager

Almost overnight, trust found its way into the public limelight because it has been so hard to find. From massive fraud in business to scandals in politics and athletics, the headlines point to a persistent problem of modern life and business—we lack in trust and loyalty.

In the 21st century, trust has become the world’s most precious resource. Without trust, transactions cannot occur, influence is destroyed, leaders lose teams and people lose sales. John O. Whitney, director of the Deming Center for Quality Management at the Columbia Business School, found that “mistrust doubles the cost of doing business.”

Trust is Earned Trust speaks to being reliable, dependable and capable. Think of the chair you are sitting on as an example. You have a confident belief that it can and will hold you. The trust your chair has earned has affected the speed, consistency and loyalty of you doing “business” with it. You are trusted to the degree that people believe in your ability, your consistency, your integrity and your

commitment to deliver. Trust is not a soft skill. It is a measurable competency that brings dramatic results. It can be built into an organization’s strategy, goals and culture. To gain trust, you’ll have to overcome some barriers. A study by global market research company Datamonitor found that 86 percent of the consumers in the United States and Europe are less trusting of companies than they were just five years ago.1 According to a Towers Watson survey2 of 13,000 people in varied job levels and industries, “fewer than two out of five employees today have trust or confidence in their senior leaders.”

Barrier: Shallow Relationships In today’s flat economy, relational depth is low and the constant pursuit of the best deal is high. For instance, to buy an insurance product, I used to meet

the salesperson and establish a relationship before doing business. Today, quotes and policies are compared and bought online with no relationship. Without this direct connection to trust over time, it is nearly impossible to create a genuine expectation of mutual loyalty. In spite of these cultural and marketplace changes, you can still build strong connections with your audience and form a community of loyal fans. By bringing customers into a community, you create a feeling of exclusivity and shared meaning, a club if you will. Members form expectations, so communicate often and give value with every communication (e.g., deals, content, resources).

about how to regain and strengthen trust, the discussion was invigorating and productive as I heard people say things they had held back for a long time. Team members knew their VP gave both effort and money to bring me to consult with them, so they had the sense that he was serious about listening to their ideas and criticism. He demonstrated that building trust in their organization was crucial to their success. The team went on to improve revenue and results because they had established a sense of trust and loyalty that can only come from the type of vulnerability experienced in the work session that day.

Barrier: Indifference

People trust the humble, not the arrogant. When I had the opportunity to teach at one of America’s finest military academies, I knew I was speaking to some of our nation’s bravest and brightest young men and women. The biggest problem for some of them: they knew it. The fact is that too much pride turns people off and squelches learning and trust. It also diminishes leadership influence. The key to humility is keeping an attitude that there is always more to learn.

A study conducted by the Saratoga Institute in California, considered by many to be the leader in exitinterview surveying, revealed that 89 percent of managers believed that most employees left for better pay. Yet, when the group polled employees who left those companies voluntarily, they found that nearly the exact same amount of workers (88 percent) actually cited something other than salary as the main motivation for the switch.3 A Gallup report found that “employees don’t leave companies, they leave managers and supervisors.”4 People who are cared for have a hard time leaving, even for more money. Not only is caring the right thing to do, but attrition caused by reckless lack of concern is costly. Increasing retention of both customers and employees is one of the best ways to boost the bottom line. I consulted recently for a $40 billion health-care company that was going through significant restructuring. The vice president was a brilliant leader, though his team occasionally saw him as aloof or distant on matters they cared about. When I talked with his 30member team—confidentially—

A team who looks out for the interest of the group rather than the individuals will overcome obstacles and achieve more, together. As a leader, it is essential you show your full commitment to worthy causes and to your team. This commitment solidifies trust and ensures loyalty within the organization.

Mistrust doubles the cost of doing business. — John O. Whitney, director of the Deming Center for Quality Management, Columbia Business School

Barrier: Arrogance

While loyalty and trust can be harder to find these days, they are not lost. By acknowledging the common pitfalls, we can all work to overcome them and bring a renewed sense of loyalty and trust back to the global market—and to society. ■

Edelman, 2009 Trust Barometer. Caurdron, Shari, “Rebuilding Employee Trust,” WorkForce, October 2002. 3 Keeping the People Report (E-Letter), Volume 13, Spring Issue, 2008. 4 Gallup Management Journal, April 19, 1999. 1 2

Barrier: Lack of Commitment History’s strongest leaders were unwilling to relent when things were tough, enabling them to unite others behind their causes. They were committed to something beyond themselves with an adherence that drove devotion and encouraged loyalty. Today’s successful executives and managers do so partly because they also embody these traits. Being authentic and transparent proves that you can not only be trusted, but valued. When managers go out of their way to help others within the organization, they set an example for the rest of the team to follow.


David Horsager is a business strategist, professor, keynote speaker and author of the book THE TRUST EDGE: How Top Leaders Gain Faster Results, Deeper Relationships, and a Stronger Bottom Line (Summerside Press, Sept. 2011). His roster of past and present clients includes FedEx, Wells Fargo, American Express, ING, the Department of Homeland Security, Medtronic, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, the Minnesota Vikings, Covidien and John Deere Credit. He lives in St. Paul, Minn., with his wife, Lisa, and their four children. Find out more at

Winter 2012 driven magazine


// cover story


If you’ve helped a friend harvest virtual crops, worked with your team to retake a strategic village, or tried to make words from seven letter tiles, you know the power of social games. That engagement quotient has made innovative business leaders stand up and take notice: The elements that make games so popular can also score

big in recognition and incentive programs.

“Social gaming

has a proven track record in grabbing and keeping audiences’ attention,” says David Reisner, technology solutions manager for ITAGroup, Inc. “For companies that want to engage their employees, sales and channel partners, or customers, it’s a strategy that’s yet to be fully tapped.”

A Truly Global Social Endeavor

Bowling, bridge and board games are just some of the social games of the past. People would gather together, enjoying one another’s company, challenging themselves and each other to master the game, and celebrating their achievements. The convergence of video games, the personal computer, the mobile phone and other “smart” devices connected to the Internet generated a virtual yet very real explosion of online interactivity—a truly global social endeavor. “With advances in technology and refinement, games have become a powerful social and economic force, deserving to be considered a success, and worth learning from,” says Reisner. “People already know social gaming—although relatively new on the social landscape, CityVille® alone claims over 54 million monthly active users on Facebook1 —so why not tap into that experience base to deepen the engagement with our employees, our sales and channel partners, and our customers within a loyalty program?”

Average Gamer? A 43-Year-Old Woman

If the social gaming phenomena were saturated by the stereotypical girlfriendless teenage boys, it wouldn’t be attaining the levels of

success it has—or showing up as a business strategy ready to tap. Clearly, an unexpected audience is at play, and successful game developers understand this. Zynga, the maker of seven of Facebook’s top 10 games (including CityVille), has a portfolio of more than 200 million monthly active users, and based on a 2010 gamer survey, their average user is likely a 43-year-old woman.2

Working Together is Human Nature

Socialization puts the “social” in social games. Even in warfare-type games, many players participate primarily for the social rewards of working with a team to achieve a goal. Game theory researcher and writer Richard Bartle labels this audience social. Alternatively, killers—those who thrive on competition with other players —make up a very small percentage of players (less than five percent in the case of “World of Warcraft”). The remaining 35 percent of players are explorers, players who prefer discovering new areas of the game, creating maps and learning about the hidden places within the game environment; and achievers, players who prefer to gain points, move up to different levels, and gather equipment and other concrete measurements needed to succeed in the game.3 While these roles appear in differing ratios in all social games, the typically high ratio of socialized players to the other roles demonstrates why games must be very cognizant of the social experience. Incorporating elements such as chat, voice integration, team structures, cooperative challenges and other interactive mechanics provides the sense of community that connectors need to remain engaged. »»

Winter 2012 driven magazine


Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose In his book “Drive,” Daniel Pink writes that autonomy, an increasing sense of mastery, and purpose are the three non-cash factors that help motivate a non-repetitive worker. Games deliver on all three factors.

» Autonomy—Users exercise autonomy through personalization, creating avatars, designing their environments and deciding where they want to go within the game. » Mastery—A good game creates and rewards increasing mastery with a variety of rewards and recognition of achievement at multiple levels. » Purpose—Purpose is captured in the story behind the game and in the social opportunities built into the experience.

“By incorporating these elements into a loyalty platform, the organization captures the attention of the audience, engages them in a rewarding experience, and connects them more closely to the program, other program participants and the values and mission of the organization,” Reisner says. “Game-like elements integrated within the context of a motivation or recognition program enhance the experience and the opportunity to drive loyalty. The line between work and fun is, in many cases, arbitrary, so just by acknowledging that the job can be fun, and imbedded with some greater purpose, you can immediately change the perspective of the team.” Game components have to be integrated into the strategy, however. J.P. Rangaswami,’s

chief scientist, sent out a warning at ReadWriteWeb’s 2Way Summit last summer when he said, “If work sucks, you can’t put (on) the lipstick of points and badges and completion bars and leader boards and suddenly make work exciting. The changes have to be deeper to be worthwhile.”

Reinforce Behavior

Successful games focus on making sure the player experiences the thrill of progress in as many ways as possible. People respond better to more goals and feedback than less. An engaging game-like experience can reinforce behaviors as close to the time of action as possible. Feedback is immediate, and socializing the experience allows others to celebrate achievements or push for better performance. A loyalty program that incorporates game components should provide different types of rewards such as: » Redemptive awards, where the reward is convertible into something tangible. This doesn’t often exist in social games, but



engage. ignite. reward.


Introducing Bebotics from ITAGroup

Innovative companies around the world are using elements from social game design to do everything from launch new products to make work more compelling for employees. Some call it gamification or game mechanics. At ITAGroup, it’s called Bebotics.SM

ITAGroup integrates achievements such as badges, deeper socialization of goals and rewards, and personalization within a community to its proven loyalty programs to engage participants, ignite a connection to the client’s brand and reward desired behavior. Bebotics relies on familiar game mechanics, activities and concepts found in the most popular online roleplaying experiences today, including FarmVille,® Mafia Wars,® Second Life® and Foursquare.® A Bebotics solution drives greater engagement within a reward,

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recognition or incentive program by dramatically increasing participant touch points and emotional, competitive and incentive connections. The payoff is a stronger connection to a program, more and varied rewards for the participant, and deeper engagement and loyalty for the program audience. ■ /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

FarmVille and Mafia Wars are registered trademarks of Zynga Inc.; Second Life is a registered trademark of Linden Research Inc.; Foursquare is a registered trademark of Foursquare Labs, Inc.; and Bebotics is an applied-for service mark of ITAGroup.


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The “social” in social games is about the connections that are made and nurtured. Within a sales incentive platform, message boards or forums can be used to share knowledge, grow relationships and foster collaboration among the community.

when added to the experience, it provides an incredible boost in engagement—and it’s a natural gateway to an integrated online awards catalog. » Status rewards, like trophies or merit badges, have no monetary value but are highly motivating for the player, living entirely within the framework of the loyalty program. » Social rewards include any praise or scoring for a player’s involvement in the community of the game and help extend the positive feeling that accompanies achievement. » Karmic rewards tap into our human nature to lend a helping hand to others.

Tactic, Not Strategy

The bottom line in any incentive or recognition program is to drive loyalty. An engaging program that incorporates components from successful social games can build loyalty by communicating the organization’s purpose and linking positive action to corporate success in a fun, friendly and familiar environment. ■ Woo, Stu; Shayndi Raisce (2011-11-02). “EA Invades Zynga’s Turf.” The Wall Street Journal; p. B1. PopCap Games survey of U.S. and U.K. users, Feb. 2010. Bartle, R: “Players Who Suit MUDs;” Retrieved on 2009-01-05.


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Reading List: “Drive” by Daniel Pink Using 40 years of scientific research focused on human motivation, Daniel Pink looks at true motivation, what really drives us, and techniques to incorporate this information in our daily and business life. “Reality is Broken” by Jane McGonigal Making a compelling argument that games are filling human needs, Jane McGonigal incorporates psychology, sociology and cognitive science to uncover how we can use game design in the real world. “Total Engagement” by Byron Reeves and J. Leighton Read Why are you more engaged playing online games than you are at work? What can we take from those games to improve our business processes, solutions and environment? Using in-depth, hands-on research, this book shows how game strategy can solve a multitude of business problems.

5 Factors that can help you win in the loyalty game Five key factors distinguish the most successful social games. When applied to a loyalty program, they influence human psychology and drive motivation and results through gaming behaviors. Flow—The “sweet spot” in game mechanics, flow is about balancing challenges with skills. It’s essential in designing successful games because without it, participants either give up in frustration or quit from boredom. Personalization— By incorporating self-selected images, awards, names and more, participants create a tailored experience. Profiles and avatars allow users to express themselves and share their expertise or personality. Social Goals—Social goals are set for participants to achieve, but because they’re public, positive peer pressure fuels the fire to achieve results. With a forum, for example, participants can post achievements and comments, or ask for advice or best practices from the community. Competition/Cooperation— Leader boards fulfill the need for competition, and forums can help facilitate cooperation. Both leader boards and forums publicize and celebrate individual and team results. Directed Reinforcement— Immediate awards—badges, virtual awards, social points and redemptive points—provide immediate gratification and visible, audible or social recognition for achieving milestones or desired behaviors. Badge systems are the most common reinforcement tool. Winter 2012 driven magazine


Overcoming the

By Mitch Matthews

Intellectual Immune System for impact and longer-lasting change. Conferences and annual meetings are great. We gather to hear new ideas, solutions and initiatives—about a specific strategy, a four-step solution or a new mindset. It’s inspiring, and we think, “That’s it! That’s what I need for MY problem.” And then we set out to utilize our new-found tool or approach in our everyday life.

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But then, whether it’s two hours, two days or two months later, we tend to forget or reject that new concept. And we go back to our old ways. We’ve all experienced this. We’ve all been frustrated by it. But what causes it? Well, I call this phenomenon the Intellectual Immune System.™ What is that? Well… I have a theory that our intellect has an immune system similar to our body’s. So, much like the body will reject something that it needs if it comes from outside, our intellect will attack an idea—even if it’s a good one—because it comes from outside us. Let me paint a picture to explain. I have a friend who needed a new kidney. His doctor explained why, so he understood the reasons for the surgery. The donor was a perfect match. The surgery went off without a hitch. But—even though he knew he needed it, even though it was a perfect match and even though the surgery went incredibly well—what did his body do? His body rejected it because it came from outside him. Our intellect can do the same thing. Even though we may need an idea, a specific solution or a piece of advice, we tend to reject it. Maybe not immediately, but over time, our intellect shuts it down. Don’t take my word for it. Test the theory with me. Have you ever read a book that provided seven amazing principles or five new habits that you loved? Maybe you completely connected with the author and wondered whether they had cameras in your home or workplace because they seemed to know your situation so well? Maybe you committed to trying those new concepts, but within a week you’d forgotten what principles five, six and seven were, or you couldn’t even remember the first three habits! Well, that was probably your Intellectual Immune System kicking in. Even though the solution seemed to be a great fit, it came from outside you. Over time, your Intellectual Immune System started to attack the ideas. That’s the Intellectual Immune System, pure and simple. It’s hard to

beat. But don’t worry. There is a way around it. how? Ownership. There is a simple approach that enables you to beat your own Intellectual Immune System so you and your teams can own the concepts that are shared at your next meeting or conference. It can greatly increase the chance of being able to retain and implement the brilliant ideas and strategies being shared.


Even though we may need an idea, a specific solution or a piece of advice, we tend to reject it. Maybe not immediately, but over time, our intellect shuts it down.

As a part of this process, you will be able to create solutions that you and your teams can own. And since you and your teams own them—and they come from within—your Intellectual Immune System is less likely to shut them down. bike shop wisdom We all know that even if we love an idea, it can be difficult to take it in its current form and align it with our world. We often need to adjust it. In some ways, it’s like buying a bike. I worked in a bike shop when I was growing up. We sold a lot of bikes. And one thing we did to dramatically increase the chance that a purchased bike would actually get ridden—as opposed to just being taken home and put on a hook in the garage—was to adjust the bike to fit its new owner.

We might adjust the seat or raise the handlebars, find a bag or grab a matching water bottle. All of these minor adjustments helped the owner to really own the bike. And if they truly felt like they owned it, they rode it. We need to do the same thing with new ideas and solutions. We need to take steps to adjust them. We need to modify ideas to own them. powerful questions One strategy you can use to increase ownership and beat the Intellectual Immune System is using powerful questions. » How can I own this idea? » How could I adjust it to fit me? » How could I make it apply to my world? Think about a new idea that is shared, then ask yourself these questions to help you adjust the solution to fit you, in your world. These types of questions can increase ownership and decrease the power of the Intellectual Immune System. By using questions like these, you can create an adjusted solution. And since that new solution is coming from you, your Intellectual Immune System won’t reject it. But hey… don’t take my word for it. Your Intellectual Immune System would probably reject it anyway. Test this out. Adjust these questions to find the right questions for you. Own them and use them the next time you learn something new. Then beat the Intellectual Immune System and create even more impact and lasting change! ■


Mitch Matthews is an author, speaker and performance coach. He helps organizations and individuals dream bigger and achieve more. He’s worked with organizations such as NASA, Principal Financial Group and others to expand their thinking, increase performance and have more fun in the process. Find out more at

Winter 2012 driven magazine


Loyalty programs must show

results Here’s how to do it. By Suzanne Schell, CRP

More organizations than ever before are building accountability into all of their initiatives. Stakeholders realize that eventually they will need to show a return on investment on the initiative or it may be eliminated. The impact of this changing business climate demands that loyalty programs also demonstrate their effectiveness and value. And while some inside those organizations argue that it’s not possible to calculate return on investment (ROI) for any type of program, others struggle with meaningful measures and calculations. Employee recognition programs, service awards programs, sales incentives, incentive travel, employee engagement programs and motivational events all must stand up to similar scrutiny. One of the best ways to demonstrate value is through ROI evaluation. All types of corporations and organizations use ROI evaluation to show outcomes, results and the value of incentive programs, but it is still an issue that challenges even the most sophisticated. Senior staff

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and executives believe most programs are necessary to meet the needs of the organization. Intuitively they believe there is value in implementing these programs. They also believe that recognition and loyalty programs enhance business value, improve image, build teamwork and increase employee engagement. The frustration comes from the lack of tangible, credible evidence and results data. Payoffs are normally vague and not credible.

A Better Way to Measure The Phillips ROI Methodology,TM developed by Dr. Jack Phillips of the ROI Institute, represents a comprehensive, balanced approach to credibly measuring the success of any type of program or solution. It also provides a process for identifying program improvements.

Phillips created his methodology in the 1970s, refined it through application and use in the 1980s, and implemented it globally during the 1990s. The methodology collects and analyzes the six levels of measures shown in Table 1. Data collection at different levels creates a chain of impact, to ensure business impact results from the program. A positive reaction to the program leads to a high level of learning and understanding how the program works. Application of the actions learned affects business measures with a positive outcome. For a program to add business value, the chain of impact must exist and not be broken. This balanced approach to measurement includes a technique to isolate the effects of the program at these six levels.

Level ➊ // Reaction and Planned Action Most organizations complete this level of evaluation with an emphasis on the reaction, but more informative data at this level needs to be collected to show how all participants perceive it to be relevant, practical and necessary. If managers and supervisors don’t see a program as relevant to them or to the organization, they will not support it and possibly not participate in it. If employees perceive the program to be in any way unfair or not achievable, they will not be motivated by it. Level ➋ // Learning Loyalty programs are underutilized or fail because employees were not given sufficient training on how to use the program. And managers’ program understanding is a critical component to the program being successful. Collecting data at this level shows the knowledge of the program, and can identify if it is sufficient to deliver the desired results. Level ➌ // Application Failure to do what is expected is the most common reason for a break in the chain of impact in any program. The breakdown most often occurs because participants encounter barriers or obstacles that may deter their use of the program. Measurement at

Reaction and Planned Action



Business Impact

Return on Investment

Intangible Measures

Table I

program in the beginning to see a change in a positive direction. If the business measures don’t improve, the program may only be driving activity and not results. Level 4 focuses on the actual business improvements achieved by the participants as they successfully use and implement the incentive program. Typical level 4 business measures include profit increases (not gross sales increases), customer satisfaction, productivity, quality, costs and time.

The Phillips ROI Methodology,TM developed by Dr. Jack Phillips of the ROI Institute, represents a comprehensive, balanced approach to credibly measuring the success of any type of program or solution.

this level is critical to the validation of the chain of impact. Identifying the barriers and eliminating them allows for early improvement. Level ➍ // Business Impact Business measures must be aligned to the

Level ➎ // ROI ROI is the ultimate level of evaluation. The incentive or recognition program’s monetary benefits are compared with the program’s fully loaded costs. It is usually expressed as a percent or benefit-to-cost ratio.

Level ➏ // Intangible Measures In addition to tangible, monetary benefits, most recognition and incentive programs will produce intangible, non-monetary benefits. Every attempt needs to be made to convert all data to monetary values, but if soft data cannot credibly be converted to monetary values, they are left as intangible.

Isolating the Effects of the Program When calculating ROI, users often overlook the process of isolating the effects of the incentive program. This step is essential, because many factors may influence performance improvement. Measuring the effect of each influence is imperative, at least to the extent it is attributed to the program. Without isolation, the results can be overstated and decision makers will question the overall program success. On the other hand, program credibility lies in identifying the impact directly related to the loyalty or recognition program.

Conclusion With growing emphasis on accountability in organizations large and small, almost every function, process or program is being analyzed at higher standards than in the past. Being able to credibly show the business value that incentive, recognition and motivation programs add to the business will ensure their support and funding continue. ■


Suzanne Schell, CRP, is CEO of the ROI Institute of Canada (roiinstitutecanada. com), a partner with the ROI Institute. She is a workshop facilitator, consultant, speaker and coach, helping organizations show the value of their projects and programs. Suzanne can be reached at The Phillips ROI Methodology is a trademark of the ROI Institute.


Winter 2012 driven magazine


// book review

Managing our energy is the first step to managing our time. “There is not enough time in the day” is a statement that most of us can relate to. We simply do not have enough time in our days to manage all that we have to manage. Often we feel that in order to tackle our biggest priorities, something else must inevitably be sacrificed. It might be your job, your health or even your family. Something has to give. Or does it? The problem may not be, in fact, how we’re managing our time, but rather how we are managing our energy. This is the enlightened stance put forth in

Schwartz, CEO of The Energy Project — offer a simple but compelling approach for effectively managing your energy. Developed for the everyday corporate “athlete,” the foundational principles center around the need to effectively manage energy on physical, emotional, mental and spiritual levels. When we maximize our energy in each of these areas, we become the highest performers we can possibly be. The principles are very simple. When was the last time you got eight hours of sleep? Do you plan for 20-minute

book will challenge you with to ensure you are optimizing the energy in your life. What I Liked About The Book » It’s a life changer. If you make even one change the authors suggest, it will have profound results. » It’s simple. There is nothing they are asking you to do that is complicated or seems impossible. » It’s inspiring. Rather than lecturing throughout the book,

‘There is not enough time in the day’ is a statement that most of us can relate to. “The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal.” The authors—Jim Loehr, known for his training of top-flight athletes, and Tony

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breaks in your day to depart from the daily grind? Have you communicated to your boss what motivates you? Are you living by the values that drive your life? These are just some of the questions that this

they use the stories of real people and the profound changes they saw in their lives. » It’s not typical. This is the most unique personal development book I’ve ever found. ■

Want More Information? Check out these similarly structured titles: Time warrior by Steve chandler: This work champions non-linear time management, a commitment to action in the present moment. Getting things done by david allen: This how-to guide outlines the author’s method for stress-free performance that he has taught to tens of thousands of people across the country. be excellent at anything by tony schwartz: Schwartz offers readers strategies to manage the demands of an increasingly complex world.


about the reviewer Amanda Brend is a business development manager in ITAGroup's Midwest Region.

Meet Megan.

Wife. Sister. Dedicated animal shelter volunteer. She’s also your employee. And she’s looking to be recognized for her contribution as a productive member of your team. ITAGroup helps companies create loyalty among employees like Megan every day. We can do the same for you.

Let’s talk loyalty. 4800 Westown Parkway West Des Moines, IA 50266 800.257.1985 //

4800 Westown Pkwy. West Des Moines, IA 50266

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Take a look at any successful company. You’ll find communication right at the core. Creative, powerful communication. That’s why we want to put ourselves right smack in the middle of your performance initiative. Research says that’s where we belong. Think about it. You say you want to educate, engage and motivate your people? That can’t happen unless you communicate like you mean it. We’ll work with you to develop a creative, cross-media communications strategy. The right message. The right time. The right way.

Let’s talk. Call for samples today. 800.257.1985

Creative Direction Theme and Logo Development I Copywriting and Scriptwriting I Graphic Design, Illustrations and Photography I Campaign Definition and Scheduling Electronic Media Text-Based and HTML-Based Email I Electronic Brochures I Flash® Animation I Video and Audio Production I Website Design I Phone and Messaging Options Print Collateral Brochures and Announcement Kits I Postcards, Mailers and Stationery I Database-Driven Mailings I Newsletters, Magazines and Catalogs I Point-of-Purchase Signage, Banners and Posters Special Marketing ArtWorks® Custom Works of Art I Dimensional Products and Premiums I Kiosks and Trade Show Products

Strong Communications. Strong Program. Meet us in the middle.


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