Content originally taken from eBella Magazine, “Are We Having Fun Yet” by Kelly Townsend.
Are you interested in boosting employee productivity over 20%? I’ll share with you how to brand your workplace with a hint of fun and humor to boost morale and help engage your employees.
In a recent global workforce study performed by Towers Perrin Global, Survey here, just 21 percent of the close to 90,000 respondents in 19 countries, were fully engaged in their job. The study also found that companies with the highest engagement level achieved better financial results and were more successful in retaining the most valued employees.
Workers in the U.S. have stresses that weren’t impacting their lives before like they are today. Many people, of all socioeconomic classes, are dealing with increased fuel and food costs, rising health care costs and increased debt. People
are burdened, stressed and concerned about basic survival needs. How can you support your workforce in these trying times and get the best from them while increasing productivity?
Here is a fun infographic about what creates happier employees from a healthy snacking company, SnackNation.
Work Made Fun Gets Done
The philosophy of the authors of the best selling book, Fish Tales, distinguish play this way: “Work made fun gets done, especially when we choose to do serious tasks in a light hearted, spontaneous way. Play is not just an activity; it’s a state of mind that brings new energy to the tasks at hand and sparks creative solutions.”
As children, we learned that work and play should be separate, yet truly generating an innovative and fun environment requires a healthy balance of purposeful play to your workday.
Northwestern Mutual takes the fun side of work seriously. Through research, they found that new hires just out of college are looking for leisure earning and learning. They found older workers actually want that as well! The fun begins with a representative’s initial training, which can start with an activity they call Toy Story. When new hires introduce themselves, they’re given a toy and asked to share with others how that toy best represents them, then they get to keep the toy. They also have new hires create a collage that represents what they want and what motivates them.
More than 5,700 people responded to a careerbuilder.com survey, Survey here that determined displaying a sense of humor could help real-life leaders. The work place loves a leader who can laugh. Managers who can laugh at themselves are often seen as more approachable and in touch with the challenges their teams face.
Surveys consistently report that employees value co-worker relationships and work environment above compensation when it comes to retention. Building relationships among employees across your organization also helps in cross-departmental communications, cooperation, engagement and team building.
Bring Play to the Workday! How to have fun at work
What ideas can you come up with to make your workplace more enjoyable and have your employees happy? Consider some of these suggestions, or make up your own to boost employee morale.
1. Relieve stress with fun and surprise. Do something unexpected that doesn’t take away from completing work, yet breaks tension. Have strolling jugglers or magicians; hire a therapist to give chair massages; distribute milk and cookies or ice cream bars.
2. Turn your employees into headhunters. Reward employees for referring new hires. Imagine how well people adapt when they already have a relationship with another colleague.
3. Publicly celebrate goals. I know a sales organization that rings a bell when a large deal is made and everyone in the office stops to do the money dance!
4. Celebrate diversity with special events that include your staff and their families.
5. Make fitness an initiative in your organization. Support walking groups or other athletic activities.
If your team isn’t having fun, I recommend you create an initiative to transform your work culture into a fun and playful environment. The results can have a direct impact on your bottom line and increase productivity.