Bubbles = Motivation


Goals, when scaled appropriately, are ambitious and intimidating. Even the most confident swallow hard and blink prior to telling oneself, “I got this.” It’s the “American Way” to be super ambitious and push ourselves beyond some definition of excellence. But is this fun? Do you use bubbles to motivate?

It’s no longer effective to sit down with a team or individuals and attach their efforts to a goal or a series of very relevant and smart metrics. The trend in some industries has been the “gamification” of work, but that can be a tad extreme if the resources aren’t in place or the industry and role is a bad match for that concept. Bubbles represent that soft spot in between plain numbers and extreme gamification.

Bubbles and I have recently found motivational success and excitement with my latest sales team. Simply put, we have a team revenue goal every day. If we hit that goal, we get bubbles. I went to Amazon and found a $40 electric, pseudo-industrial, bubble machine that zaps to life when plugged in and turned on. Once the switch is flipped our robo-motivator celebrates our team-based success by vomiting thousands of colorful bubbles all over their corporate desks. IT’S SO MUCH FUN!

Each day, every time someone processes a large sale, or the team knows they’re getting close to the daily target, the entire team starts rallying behind the concept. They bark, “Mike! Get the bubbles ready!” or “Rebecca is getting bubbles tomorrow!” Managers devise complicated incentive plans with multiple qualifiers to hone in on and reward the actual behaviors that drive results, so they think.

Maybe it’s much easier. Maybe you just need to balance the heavy burden of chasing high performance with something fun. What is your sales team’s “Bubbles?”

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