Introducing: The Penalty Jar

Photo of author

By Henry Updegrave

We’re excited to announce the biggest game changer in I Done This history: the Penalty Jar! It’s a simple way to keep you motivated to accomplish your daily goals.

I Done This has always embraced workplace happiness, productivity, and team communication. We’ve been encouraging our users to knock their to-do lists out of the park and been right there to congratulate them when they succeed. But this new feature takes things in a different direction.

For years, we’ve been all about the carrot. But now, we’re going to try the stick.

carrot stick

From this day forward, I Done This will charge users $10 for every goal they fail to accomplish!

Why the Penalty Jar?

When we introduced the Goals feature in 2014, it was a huge success. People could outline everything they needed to do, manage their time accordingly, and measure their results at the end of each day.

But there was one big problem. 62% of our users’ goals went unaccomplished.

That represents a 62% failure rate on our part. We couldn’t stand by any longer. Here at I Done This, we’re passionate about motivating our users to accomplish more each and every day. The Penalty Jar is a bold new step in that direction.

After all, nothing motivates people more than negative reinforcement. Just ask one of our favorite customers, Shia LaBeouf.

You know it’s true. What do you do when your disobedient teen won’t hit the books? Ground him. What does a teacher do when someone’s cell phone rings in class? They confiscate it. How do you stop a dog from running away? A shock collar.

Think of the Penalty Jar as our shock collar for you. For instance, let’s say you miss a few goals next month and find yourself a couple bucks short on your rent. Oops! Guess you’ll think twice next time you want to take that long lunch, because now you have nowhere to live! That’s the power of the Penalty Jar. You’ll never want to be unproductive again.

How this actually works:

Imagine you open up I Done This and set six daily goals. Your list might look a little something like this:

dones list start of day

Seems like a pretty reasonable day! But as so often happens, other stuff comes up, you get a little distracted, and just can’t get it all done. At the end of the day, your list looks like this:

dones list end of day 2

Sorry, kids! Not only did dad forget to pick you up at school, but he just forked over tonight’s dinner budget to I Done This. Here’s the email you’d receive from us in that scenario:

dones email 2

Pretty straightforward—just a chipper congratulations on everything you did manage to get done, and a quick reminder that you now owe us $30.

It’s basic economics. People do whatever they’re incentivized to do. By charging you $10 for everything you don’t accomplish, we’re incentivizing higher productivity.

How are we gonna spend all this money?

The Penalty Jar has big implications for the team here at I Done This. We can’t wait to see all the boxes you leave unchecked and tasks you fail to complete. Based on our proprietary statistics, we expect to be rolling in dough shortly. Here are some preliminary ideas on how we might spend it.

1. Pizza party

pizza party 2

This’ll be a great team bonding experience. Hey, we’ve earned it! (Or rather, you guys lost it.)

2. Build a new office

conf room 2

Here’s a quick design mock-up. Classy and understated, no?

3. Happy hour

happy hour

Finally, a chance for the I Done This team to let our hair down and cut loose. All thanks to your failed goals!

The Penalty Jar is the Future

Look, we know the Penalty Jar might not be our most popular feature at first. But a year from now, when you and your team are crushing your goals every day for fear of landing in the poor house, we know you’ll end up thanking us.

Can’t wait to hear your thoughts! And, of course, Happy April Fool’s.


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