The conventional wisdom says, “Work hard and play hard”. In the modern business environment, however, the motto has undergone a massive transformation. As businesses have become more competitive, and treading a work-life tightrope has taken its toll on everyone, companies are now coming up with innovative ways to beat the inevitable stress and make work more fun.
Some of the tech brands have emphasised on infusing fun and levity into their work ambience, allowing everyone to lighten up and feel happy about what they are doing. For example, IBM and Yahoo have funny names like “Kajagoogoo” for their meeting rooms while Hulu hosts taco-eating contests and Airzooka tournaments. Similarly, MailChimp has a web-enabled Nerf cannon standing guard over the office and at Twitter, they often hold meetings at their rooftop.
Why Humor is Vital at Work
There are many tangible benefits of adding humor and levity to your work place. When employees feel happy, it invariably translates into productivity and reflects in their communications with your customers. According to Mayo Clinic, every giggle and guffaw brings a host of benefits to workplaces.
Apart from relieving stress and boredom, laughter boosts engagement, spurs creativity, collaboration and analytic precision among the workforce. In short, investing in fun and humor at your workplace brings huge ROI and begets a healthy work culture.
There are countless ways to add fun and humor at work, here are some of the most common tactics companies deploy to ensure a happy atmosphere.
Have a Games Area: Taking occasional breaks from the desk is vital to your employees’ peace of mind and morale. Having a games area such as a pool table, sofa or picnic bench can offer ample opportunity for breaking away from stress and entering the fun zone where they can clear their mind, crack a joke or two and simply laugh out loud for no good reason. Moreover, sometimes breakout zones offer fresh insights and new perspectives.
Encourage Socializing: Socializing at work is a great way to promote a healthy work ambience and emotional well-being. According to Tom Rath, author of Vital Friends, people with a best friend at work tend to be up to seven times more engaged than those without one. When employees share natural a bond, collaboration and teamwork become more fun and productive.
Decorate Your Office: An office space is one where your employees spend a large chunk of their time. An aesthetically designed office includes ergonomic workstations, a swanky cafeteria and a refreshing lounge area. Each of these places affects your employee’s morale and emotional well-being. However, working at the same space may start to appear monotonous. That’s when you need to get creative – try taking meetings outside the office or, as Twitter does it, on your rooftop. The point is when you take a break from the obvious, things tend to look fun, allowing your employees to rewind and rejuvenate.
Get a Dog: Dogs have earned the designation of man’s best friend. In the recent years, they have earned one more distinction – the driver of productivity at workplace. According to a recent study from Virginia Commonwealth University, employees who brought dogs to workplace experienced lower stress levels than those who didn’t. Many other research studies have proved having a canine companion in the office can boost productivity and spark positivity. It is no wonder why almost 20% of the companies in the US allow their employees to bring their pets along, of which 76% are dogs.
Encourage Hobbies at Work: Everyone has a hobby they want to pursue when they are free. However, the constant work pressure hardly allows them to take it up. If you allow your employees to work on their hobbies for 30 minutes everyday, it will boost their morale and add to their happiness quotient. It’s a great way to relax and come back replenished with enthusiasm.
Be Appreciative: Sometimes, making a small positive change at your workplaces can make a huge difference. Small gestures such as appreciating your employees for their accomplishment can add meaning to their life. Acknowledging their efforts and calling a quick meeting to say thank you can boost their morale and make them feel privileged.
Pro Tip: Looking for more tips and tricks to add humor to your workplace? Check out these 101 ways to create humor at work.
Promoting fun and humor is a great way to maintain levity at work. A happy workforce translates into a better brand and increased productivity. To quote CEO Rudy Karsan, “When you’re in a job that you enjoy and you’re good at, you’re not just a better worker. You’re a better spouse, a better parent, a better citizen.”
What is your advice on blending humor and levity at workplace?