Project Management

Do You Know the Difference Humor Makes at Work?

Humor is the best medicine, so what are the benefits of laughter at work? Laughter can help to ease conflicts, reduce stress, and improve teamwork according to Michael Kerr. In a post for Project Management Hacks, Bruce Harpham elaborates on Kerr’s idea for success in the workplace.

4 Benefits of Humor at Work

  1. Boosts attendance
  2. Helps improve decisions
  3. Improves problem-solving capacity
  4. Humor is utilized by high performers.

When there is some humor at work, it helps to improve performance, but more importantly, satisfaction. When a person is satisfied with their job, they are often more inclined to actually show up. Humor helps create a positive environment that boosts mood and improves good decision-making. The ability to solve problems is dependent upon a person’s emotional state; a positive state helps improve problem-solving. In Harvard Business Review, the executives who have been ranked the highest are those who utilize humor.

There are five easy steps to add some humor to a mundane workplace:

  1. Seek out the comedy.
  2. Take notice to “accidental” comedy.
  3. Participate in the humor.
  4. Experiment.
  5. Do not be afraid to make fun of yourself.

Before the humor can commence, the comedy must be found! Look for the quick laughs, but be aware that humor can easily be taken too far. There are a plethora of situations that evoke “accidental” comedy, which is always good for a hearty laugh. Adding humor to the office can be as easy as endorsing someone else’s joke, just as long as they are not making fun of another coworker. It is okay to experiment with ideas and see what is the most funny to the workplace. Perhaps people enjoy some “worst awards of the week” or fun props in meetings. And when you laugh and poke fun at yourself, it may even help people to feel connected to you.

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