Creating an innovation routine is a real challenge in many ways. First because innovation is not naturally perceived as adding value to the organization in practical terms, compared to the core business of it.
Due to Scania’s 60 years in Brazil, Corporate Relations was developing a series of marketing activations (a teaser-like activity, meant to arouse people’s curiosity and engagement towards the big event Scania was planning) to make people delve into Scania’s history.
With so many activations every week, we had to plan something simple and engaging. We decided to use a couple of Microsoft Kinects we had used for previous experiments in the company to make people move their bones after lunch time.
We focused on creating a simple game due to time & resource constraints, guided by the following objectives:
- Connect to the company: Allow people to simulate the process of building a truck
- Make people move: Give some people the chance to interact for the first time with Augmented Reality (AR).
- Reward the participation: Provide a token to the moment they had, a picture of them with an icon of the event, the Scania 113 truck.
As transversal objectives, we wanted to:
- Have a history of people’s participation (pictures and videos)
- Have at least 120 participations ( the average of 0,5 participant/minute)
- Involve IT in an innovation culture.
To know more about main and transversal goals, read: https://blog.claytonfreitas.com.br/gamification-anticipation-framework/ and https://www.researchgate.net/publication/282196184_Lean-based_enterprise_gamification
We had basically three weeks to learn about Kinect Development and develop the game, plan and prepare the scenario and space, and perform last-minute adjustments. We assumed people would be interested to participate due to the motivators we discovered and due to the test sessions we conducted with our colleagues, which provided good feedbacks and insights.
By having promoters around the game, people were keener to accept the challenge, and then to challenge their friends. This was not an expected dynamic but it helped increasing the participation number.
To validate our thoughts, we adopted a design thinking approach to the problem, which guided our development process:
Collecting feedbacks from a wide range of participants, both with and without AR background, allowed us to tailor the game to fit both the limited time-frame it was going to be available for and the experience people had.
It was fulfilling to see that even hearing-impaired employees could reach the end-game (even with the support of the promoters), and that showed us the importance of accessibility!
- Connect to the company: People were embarrassed at first but social pressure (friends) and the reward helped them simulating a short assembly process.
- Make people move: People wanted to go more than once!
As for the transversal objectives:
- 151% success rate on participation. Over 300 participants.
- Design Thinking applied helped us proving the value of the mindset to ourselves and to the stakeholders.
Build the team
We were essentially four on the project. Corporate Relations and IT together. It was great to be working with people committed to solve problems as they appeared, always providing ideas to make the development practical and enjoyable.
If you are to get involved in an initiative like that, the team must have the right chemistry. People in your team must be willing to give up some of their personal preferences to the success of the project.
Douglas Higa, Mayling Melo, Fabricia Morais, and me (Clayton Freitas) had just that. Sharing the work and the pre-implementation-night-pizza with them was fun and told us it would run like a charm, even considering that we had to make final late-night adjustments in the game.
If your team is not with the same mindset, a prep-talk and the right briefing are essential to prepare the minds for the job.
Well, by the end of the day, someone asked me: “How could this help Scania sell more trucks?” – Short answer is: it does not. At least not directly. But when you ponder on why would a company try to engage their employees or their community into getting to know the brand better, and get acquainted with it, it is the sum of small things like this that empowers the brand, the people, and end up selling more.
My advice is: Allow your employees to try new things, to share it with others, to challenge themselves. It is a fulfilling kind of pressure and it will certainly allow your company reap positive, long-term results along the way.