article in this issue "Humor
In The Workplace: If
All You Do When You Go To Work is Work, then You Need
to Lighten Up!,"
is by Ann
Fry and Terrill Fischer of humoru.com,
a virtual university that specializes
in humor and lightness in the workplace. As
facilitators, we know the power of lightness and play
to bring out the creative best in people. This
some good ideas to cultivating a spirit of humor and lightness
in the workplace that you may want to pass on to your
client managers and leaders.
We're also offering a free teleclass with guest Ann Fry
entitled, "Humor - The Hidden Ingredient for ALL
Good Facilitators." This is part of our FacilitatorU.com
teleclass series and will be offered at 7 PM EDT on Monday,
May 1st. Read
and register for this class at the bottom of this issue.
If you or your colleagues are interested in submitting
an article for consideration, please email
your ideas. I'd love to hear from you.
Have a great week...
in the Workplace
If All You
Do When You Go To Work is Work, then You Need to Lighten Up!
you realize that you spend more hours at work every day than
you do with your significant other, your kids or anyone else
for that matter? So, if you spend all those hours with all
those people at work, wouldn't you like it to be a more fun,
uplifting, satisfying experience?
the saying, "Laugh and the world laughs with you, cry
and you cry alone?" Are you spending your day laughing
or are you spending your day crying? Are you getting up
each morning and saying, "Wow, I love what I do."
Or "I can't wait to get to work today?" or are
you saying, "Ugh, another day in that (blankety, blank)
going to be a bit unconventional here and suggest that you
begin looking at the workplace and the workday in a different
way. I'm suggesting that if your employees are happy and
have a full, rich, fun, balanced life, then, your department/agency
will function at peak performance. Now, perhaps you have
never quite thought of happiness as a desired characteristic
of your employees; but if I told you that happy employees
are more productive employees, would that be of interest
like to invite you to reconsider-expand your paradigm-to
look at what it means to have happy employees. Then, once
we've determined the benefits of having satisfied/happy
employees, we'll explore how to make the workplace more
fun or humorous.
characteristics of fun are apparent, what you'll notice
in the workplace is that your employees:
to the productivity of your agency
your interests in mind-are loyal
more creative and show more motivation
forward to rising each morning, facing the day with enthusiasm
and pitching in wholeheartedly.
to "lighten up!"
of the buzzwords we use and the issues we face in the work
world today: change, stress, downsizing, doing more with
less, re-engineering, conflict. Employees complain of not
being understood or appreciated, of not feeling a sense
of purpose about or a true connection with their work, and
not having a voice to register with their company. The result
of all this is substance abuse, high absenteeism, high job
turnover, violence, physical and emotional illness and the
subsequent " off the chart" cost of health care.
first step toward creating an environment where your employees
will feel happy at work is to select a "designated
fun person"-someone who is normally a happy, fun and
playful person. Then, ask that person to select a workplace
fun committee. Then, let the committee create your fun workplace.
A fun workplace is one where employees can be openly lighthearted.
They can laugh out loud, even in the hallways, they can
post funny pictures and cartoons and have contests. They
can have "dress down" days and "theme"
days. They can have toys on their desks and music in their
offices. They can have secret pals and give surprise gifts
to each other. They can bring their pet dogs, cats or fish
to work and even to meetings.
can have a breakroom that really gives them a break-with
paints and easels, audio tapes, funny videos, comic books
and more-so they return to their desks refreshed and ready
to work. Our motto is, "the company that plays together,
stays together!" The truth is that happy employees
are productive employees. It's that simple! As stated above,
the qualities of rapport-building, communication and connectedness
are what's desired in today's workplace. Thus, we need skills
like: thinking outside the box, brainstorming, teambuilding,
creating results, cooperation, flexibility. All of these
skills are encompassed in the skills of improvisation-the
art of being spontaneous. Humor produces many benefits.
It frees communication, changes perspective, empowers, acts
as a connector, decreases tension and it facilitates learning
kind of workplace do you want? Think about it.
Humor University, 1999. Ann Fry and Terrill Fischer. Check
out their website at www.humoru.com.
|How can you employ one of the
tips discussed above in your workplace or within the groups
you work with? I'd love to hear what shows up for you. Please
us your comments.
at Work: The Guaranteed, Bottom-Line, Low Cost, High-Efficiency
Guide to Success Through Humor, by Esther
Blumenfeld (Preface), Lynne Alpern (Preface)
can be an extremely useful tool for success; when used properly
it can reduce stress, improve communication, and create
a more comfortable work environment. Now best-selling humorists
Esther Blumenfeld and Lynne Alpern offer guidance for identifying
and developing your own sense-and style-of humor. Focusing
on both traditional and nontraditional workplaces-whether
you're a seasoned executive or an entry-level assistant-HUMOR
AT WORK reveals the inside track on using humor to improve
you speeches and negotiations, to develop management abilities
and leadership roles, and to guide you through the pitfalls
of day-to-day life.