A classic quote says “Work is not supposed to be fun that is why it is called work”. But I stand to object. Give or take we spend about 2200 hours at work every year, which gives about 110 000 hours at the office during an adult life. For that reason, I have decided to constantly search for fun and intellectual challenges when working.
A majority of all days I wake up I am looking forward to the fun that I am going to have at work that day. But I am fortunate; according to research most people do not feel fortified when going to work. Recent literature however supports my view, stating that individuals who are constantly directing their focus on positive and fun projects in work increases the firm’s productivity, enhances loyalty and employee satisfaction, helps to build camaraderie which encourages creativity and innovation for a better workplace and bigger profits.
Remember the first day you started your job. You are meeting all these new interesting individuals while learning the responsibilities that will hopefully make you the next superstar employee. At the end of the day you begin to tell your friends and family how great this new environment is and how you are ready to take this workplace by storm. That feeling of excitement should never die out. As a business manager and entrepreneur you can highly contribute to build such environment. The author of The Fun Minute Manager, Bob Pike, emphasize the importance of a fun work environment designed to uplift people’s spirits and remind individuals of their value to the organisation, their managers and to each other.
Creating a strong atmosphere will allow you to collaborate easily and have fun with the people around you. It is nevertheless important to keep in mind that every company has its own culture, and it is the company’s responsibility to create an atmosphere that is in alliance with the company culture you want to have. Having fun at work is a low cost easy way to build healthy and happy employees with high moral. So, how to create the right enjoyable atmosphere for your business?
Communicate positively and openly
One important aspect of communicating openly is to meet with your staff and discuss organizational missions, visions, goals and philosophy regularly. Their views and beliefs are important, so pay attention. Share how you see everyone working together as a circle in which everyone is important on the same level rather than a pyramid where supervisors and administrators are on the top and the staff at the bottom. Everyone is equal as every job is equally important in fulfilling the mission of the organization.
Furthermore, in order to create a fun and positive work environment each employee needs to feel valued. This is best reached by you listening carefully to each person and thereafter come with constructive feedback and honouring, showing that you have listened and thought of what he or she has said. As outlined in one of my previous blog-articles most people tend to be more concerned with being heard and voicing their own perspective rather than listen to the speaker. Being a good listener provides a more profound level of understanding about individual specific situations and it helps to understand what strategies are best to use and what should be avoided.
One of our basic human needs is to feel that we belong to something bigger than ourselves, and for many that need is met by being a part of a supportive work group. As a business manager, part of your job is to create a feeling of unity among your staff. This unity will help your team members to feel valued and that they belong.
By letting each member know they are a valued part of the team you will encourage your colleagues to respect each other for their unique contributions. To raise this team feeling you must convey to the entire staff that each person plays a significant role of the whole. Always encourage attitude of cooperation rather than competition. Whenever possible ‘catch people being good’ and make sure they and others know about the team-achievement.
Give recognition and appreciation to everyone at every opportunity. Identifying and delineating excellent job performance and attitude and thereafter showing appreciation for these things will go a long way towards making your colleagues feel that they are valued and respected part of the creation of the team that in turn will make them have even more fun at work.
Create opportunities for self-development
The development of individual employees and the team as a whole is so important in business today that those companies that do not empower their staff will eventually start to see cracks appearing. When employees do not feel that they are developing within the business, human nature will take over and they will find that challenge and enjoyment somewhere else. If the company on the other hand is encouraging self-development, and if the business is developing their staff consistently, individuals will have more fun, feel fulfilled and subsequently more focused at work. People who are motivated to improve must constantly be stimulated and they will find ways to be more productive because they will want to do more of what they are good at and find better ways to do it. Allow your team to constantly grow and develop, encourage self-development education and mentorship-programs, you will certainly regain it a hundred times.
Make it fun
Everyone wants to be where people are having fun, so make your company feel positive and festive. Find reasons to celebrate together; it could be celebrating project success, birthdays or birth of a baby. By celebrating the completion of every small step, we leverage the powerful energies of gratitude and momentum. In order to promote future success, employees must feel the recognition they are receiving is genuine. Successful recognition is sincere, specific and happens consistently.