- May 2021
The researchers had asked everyone in their game a set of questions: Did people follow the game? Did they understand the rules? Did they think it was fair? These questions were designed to measure which salespeople had “entered the magic circle,” meaning that they agreed to be bound by the game’s rules rather than the normal rules that ordinarily guide their work. After all, if people haven’t entered a game mentally, there’s no real point to it.Sure enough, the salespeople who felt that the basketball game was a load of baloney actually felt worse about work after the game was introduced, and their sales performance declined slightly. The game benefited only the salespeople who had fully bought into it—they became significantly more upbeat at work.
Ethan Mollick and Nancy Rothbard experiment https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2277103 about gamification in a sales setting shows that gamification only works for those who buy into it.
Is this similar to ideas like the placebo effect or potentially for cases like Eastern Medicine where one might need to buy into it for the effects to matter to them?