Fun at Work!

Make time for PLAY

It's a simple truth: Employees who have fun, feel appreciated, and enjoy their job are more productive at what they do. But a new report just released by The Conference Board shows that , "employees in the United States feel dissatisfied and disconnected from their employers at an alarmingly high rate."

In fact, this survey of 5,000 workers revealed that:

• 40% of workers feel disconnected from their employers.

• Two out of every three workers do not identify with or feel motivated to drive their employer's business goals and objectives.

• 25% of employees are just "showing up to collect a paycheck."

But it doesn't have to be that way. With a little creativity and a lot of enthusiasm, you can promote a positive work environment and help engage your employees. One of the best things you can do is add some PLAY into your workday.

Plan fun and unique events
Look for opportunities to laugh
Allow time every day to de-stress
You can make work fun!

It's not difficult to make PLAY a part of every day. In fact, not only is National Fun-At-Work Day April 1st, but it is also the start of Laugh-At-Work Week—a perfect opportunity to introduce PLAY into your daily routine. Here are some fun ideas to get you started!

PLAYtime Idea #1

Meet your PLAYmates.
Start the week by selecting a theme, or allow your team to vote on a theme. Then, create a week of events around that theme. For instance, a Hawaiian theme can involve dressing up in floral shirts, handing out leis, having someone give hula lessons and having a lunchtime "luau". Or, you can choose a golf theme in which everyone gets a company golf shirt, gets to play a round of miniature golf on a course set up in your offices, and have a nine-hole potluck lunch in which every office serves up a different dish. Get your team together a couple of weeks before to decide on a theme and plan the events.

PLAYtime Idea #2

Encourage creativity
We've all been in meetings that seem to just go on forever. The next time you're looking for more participation and enthusiasm, bring a variety of toys into your meeting, place them on the table, and encourage your people to play with them during the meeting. You'll find that using their hands to manipulate a mental block or a stress ball promotes creativity and creates a more relaxed atmosphere.

PLAYtime Idea #3

Give them the gold!
Great ideas can come from anyone. To encourage your staff to brainstorm and contribute to a positive work environment, establish a creativity award, such as a gold-plated creative coil, a mini snow globe or a brass medallion. Present them to people in a meeting, in the hallways—anywhere good ideas are being shared. You can even have your team collect them and turn them in for prizes!

PLAYtime Idea #4

Wake them up with a smile!
Have goodies waiting for your team when they come in to work. This can be a coffee cup filled with treats, balloons on every chair, a gift like Positive Putty, or a small award or certificate. Even better, surprise them by taping cards with prizes written on them or a lottery card to the underside of their keyboards. Call a meeting and tell them to look to see what they've won!

Work will always be, well, work. But it doesn't mean it can't also be fun. If you have a great idea to promote fun at work, let us know—we'd love to hear from you!