Having fun at work has a lot of benefits. The initial thought may be that it’s a waste a valuable time where we should be productive. However, data tells us a different story. A chance to have fun with colleagues and move away from your work for a bit can actually help spark creativity, focus and relieve stress. The top 100 companies to work for and those with a higher level of job satisfaction generally are the ones that create a more fun atmosphere.
Space for Idea Generation
I worked for a company that had a space dedicated to letting off steam and idea generation in one of our locations. It had a pool table, some lounge chairs, a punch of tools for sparking creativity, a dart board and a few other activities that help you get out of your head so to speak. This team came out with some really innovative ideas and sparked great conversations. In addition, they were a highly functioning and happy team. It was a small investment that went along way. It reinforced the notion that you can have fun at work and still be highly productive.
Change of Environment
Sometimes you have to mix it up. I liked taking my team on an outing every once in a while. Team members that get to know one another better on a personal level are more invested in helping each other and contributing to each other’s success. The team dynamic is much healthier which makes for a happier work environment. Plus, a change of scenery is great for fostering creativity. Sometimes you just need to get out of the office or whatever work environment you are in. It helps recharge your battery and look at things from a new perspective. Whenever I am having difficulty coming up with an idea for my writing or social media, I step away from it and try to let it just come to me. A walk by the water, coffee with colleagues can do wonders in getting the creative juices flowing. It is a must to step away from time to time.
Celebrate Success and People
Part of having fun at work is recognizing and celebrating success. It is powerful in motivating individuals to perform at their best. When individuals can see their efforts are recognized and appreciated, they want to go the extra mile. It is important to celebrate success for a number of reasons. Not only does it provide recognition, it also reinforces the behaviors you want to continue. Furthermore, it creates an atmosphere of comradery that goes a long way in improving retention and job satisfaction.
The question becomes why shouldn’t we want to have fun at work given all the benefits. Furthermore, with just a few small changes you can make work more fun and be happy at work. We all want to be more productive, more creative and make valuable contributions. It seems like this is a win win strategy. How to have fun at work should be part of the overall strategy and culture of the company. Let me know what you are doing to spark creativity amongst your colleagues?