Laughter is Good for Productivity

Humor in the workplace is a productive thing, according to Psychologist Maren Rawlings from Swinburne University of Technology.  In a recent study, Rawlings “found a direct correlation between the climate of good humor in a workplace and employee satisfaction.”  Previous research found a link between job satisfaction and productivity, so the logical leap is that humor is good for productivity.  Of course this doesn’t mean we can spend our entire days cracking jokes, but it says to me that we can lighten up and laugh a little.  Rawlings also noted “If employers take measures to encourage a positive humor climate in the workplace, they are more likely to retain their staff.” Keeping the staff you have rather than experiencing turnover is clearly more productive than re-hiring and training new folks. 

Find creative ways to lighten things up around the office.  My assistant told me of a place she used to work where the Sales Director hung a punching bag in the doorway to his office so that his sales reps could take out their frustrations on it.  The same Sales Director, when sales were dragging, decided that if sales were dragging, it was time to have sales “in drag”…so the reps came to the office the next day in gender-bending outfits.  Everyone laughed and had a great time, and my assistant tells me they hit a sales record that month.  It is no big secret that when people are enjoying themselves, they can get more done and stay positive about what they are doing.  Have some fun at work.  It’s allowed, really!

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