In today’s world of work, there are two types of key decision makers that we encounter on a daily basis: those who are ready to make things happen and those who prefer to watch things happen. Embracing the value of fun, the power of play, and the joy of laughter at work is powerful for those key decision makers who are truly committed to positive workplace mental health for their team!
When fun is encouraged and integrated within the workplace, it is received as permission for a time out from an all-too-busy-world-of-work to regenerate and rebuild energy, and as motivation to complete the next big task. This fun helps us to feel engaged, manage stressors, open lines of communication, and foster employee relationships – all created through fun and laughter. These fun activities achieve the goal of bringing people together and allowing them to interact in a unique experience where the atmosphere at work becomes much more appealing. Here, people begin to see, as well as appreciate, qualities in their colleagues that they had never witnessed before.
Incorporating fun at work – “What do I do?”
It’s no surprise to HR professionals that creating a healthy and balanced work/play organization has become a competitive advantage in today’s world of work. So, when planning for the upcoming year, the first step to best address incorporating fun at work is to organize a set of standards within your employee handbook around the premise that “we all need to have more fun at work.” This strategy becomes fundamental to the success of incorporating fun at work – it becomes a first priority. And provides a huge return in the future!
As a decision maker, focus on workplace mental health by integrating fun at work into aspects such as your: employee handbook, daily work schedules, staff meetings, staff appreciation events, training and development, team building, staff retreats, or any employee wellness programs.
It has been quite encouraging to see organizations take a closer look at the value of fun at work. They believe that fun at work, happy and engaged teams raises a positive workplace and mental health levels. While they all want to harness the power of fun at work to achieve various objectives, here are some common reasons:
- Create a productive workplace environment
- Keep valued employees
- More engaging opportunities for staff training and development
- Improve employee communication practices
- Workplace strategies for mental health
Respect that if you’re going to harness the power of fun at work, ultimately it starts with you – you need to embrace a refreshing and personal philosophy towards the fun and enjoyment in the workplace.
Therefore, I challenge you to repeat after me:
- I invite playfulness into the routine workday.
- I empower people to stretch their imaginations through creative play.
- The capacity exists within me to maintain the momentum of fun.
- I have fun and realize it’s good to have fun in the workplace.
How complex does this have to be? My general rule of thumb is to involve a broad range of staff and management in the planning process. Keep the process simple, filled with lightheartedness and imagination. Most importantly, rediscovering the joy of fun should never compromise others’ concerns for physical and emotional safety. A safe and enjoyable workshop experience is one that is carried out with a responsibility to the well-being of all.
After all, ultimately, it’s really all about a smile on everyone’s faces at the start and the end of the workday! THIS is positive workplace mental health... for teams!
Blog post submitted by Robert Manolson BA, CCDP, Powerful Play Experiences, Positive Workplace Mental Health...For Teams