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Gallup found out that only 32% of US employees were engaged, and only 13% worldwide. Sometimes, routine prevents high productivity and we need an additional boost to cope with everyday tasks.
This is an important goal especially for programmers who have similar routine tasks every day. Let’s consider 3 tips to identify how to keep yourself engaged while coding or developing IT products or services.
A behavioral economist Dr. Gary Charness recognized that a person may double his or her gym attendance by receiving at least $100. So, money and other rewards will motivate us to keep moving and improving our results.
Programmers are the key audience for computer games that means that gamification and gaining a new level is very important for them. For example, hackathons that motivate IT staff to create specific software project within the short term in order to get the prize. In this case, web developers are ready to work even at night in order to win the present and become the best among other teams.
The researches showed that people tend to work harder and are willing to invest their time, money and efforts for the good prize. Besides, the fact of surprise and uncertainty motivates them more than when they know for sure what they get.
So, when programmers need to motivate yourself, they can set some enjoyable event or promise themselves one of the desired things. It helps to concentrate efforts and eliminate distractions.
Finally, a developer’s preferences for gaining profit and desire for new attractions are a huge external motivator. There is a study made by the scientists from the University of Pennsylvania that offered people to walk 7,000 steps a day for half a year. The reward was $1.40 for the reaching the goal, and the loss was $1.40 if they failed to meet the requirements. Such boundaries helped people to follow the expectations. These conditions help those who have problems with discipline or don’t have enough motivation.
Another example is online services involving StickK.com that help users to set punishment such as donating money if they don’t reach their goals. The pact, an app gives users financial rewards or penalties for the achieving goals. The money is gathered from other users according to the progress. This app uses GPS and other techniques to verify success so users can’t cheat.
21Habit is suitable for the work-related projects: you need to pledge $21 for a 21-day commitment challenge. Each successful day brings you $1 back, while you need to donate $1 every day when you fail. This app is a good fit for urgent or critical tasks.
These apps can be especially useful for programmers who love to use new technologies for various goals. Moreover, web developers have high salaries and surveys showed that financial issues aren’t the high priority for them. A desire to make a difference and change a world for the better motivates them more. So, these apps help to donate to the charity in order to boost programmers’ engagement.
Psychology claims that there is a very productive mental state when a person is entirely submerged with enjoyment and energized focus. Researchers found out that it leads for the better performance. Moreover, flow boosts learning and skills development.
Harvard professor Teresa Amabile’s research shows that people who have experienced this state of mind have higher levels of creativity, productivity, and happiness during the next three days.
To achieve flow, programmers need to use their inner potential and deep desires to feel the full enjoyment of the activities. Some experts believe that pushing ourselves outside our comfort zone and working with focus (be present right here and right now) help to achieve this state.
Active participation may also promote this state of full engagement of the developers. Also, a sense of personal control is important for the coders. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi that developed this term describes people that don’t depend too much on external rewards and experience flow in different areas of their life. They are independent and autonomous because they cannot be manipulated by usual rewards or threats. These people are engaged in everything around them because they are fully present at the moment.
Some people are afraid to do something because they don’t believe that they can achieve this. This is common when employees need to deal with too difficult and new tasks. The tendency to feel overloaded is high. Stephen Covey, the author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, advises focusing your efforts and time on assignments you may control and within your circle of influence.
Sometimes, you just need to start doing new things to gain new experience and eliminate all fears. Many smart and talented programmers underestimate their potential and they just need the practice to become a professional in a specific area. The main reason is that programmers are shy and require the specific boost to start something new and leave a comfort zone.
So, software engineers value gamification, autonomy, and rewards. When the work looks like the engaging game, the process will be more interesting and productive.
As we see, psychological principles may launch programmers’ attention. Choose the most suitable treatment and refine their productivity. Keep in mind that the more you motivate them, the better results you get.
If you need to tackle a difficult technical project, feel free to reach our professional help. We know how to provide productive results and overcome technical challenges.