Humor in the Workplace
Goodwill and easy rapport among colleagues - that's camaraderie. Do you experience it at work?
We believe the strongest bonds of camaraderie come from three simple practices:
- Acknowledge each other
- Acknowledge each other's work
- Say "thank you"
Taking a closer look, there are several more factors. To build camaraderie, it's important to have:
- A sense of belonging where you work
- Acceptance for who you are
- Inclusion - "Make everyone an insider"
- Occasional fun events, planned to meet diverse interests
- Clear messages stating that all are welcome
- Understanding for those who don't choose to participate
- Good humor
Some very creative examples of camaraderie-building events already exist on campus. Here are a few ideas:
- A kite-flying day
- A pre-game parking lot tailgate party
- A picnic
- A quilting group
- A choral group
- Team sports
- Habitat for Humanity
- High school mentoring program
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- Award department "trophies," serious or funny
- On-line trivia contests
- Weight-loss contests
- Fitness competitions
Laughter - it's about the most effective way there is to relieve group tension. Humor is a free, natural tension-reliever. Ideas for humor in the workplace abound. Check some of these resources, and choose something to implement where you work:
- Look up "humor at work" on the web, and find ways to lighten up your work and your workplace. Here are some of our favorites:
- The Humor Project
- Humor University
- "I Think, Therefore I Laugh"
- Humor at Work: How to Succeed in Business Without Really Frying
- Here's a reading list from the Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor:
- Barreca, Regina. They Used to Call Me Snow White . . . But I Drifted: Women's Strategic Use of Humor. New York, NY: Viking-Penguin, 1991.
- Blumenfeld, E., & Alpern, L. Humor at Work. Atlanta: Peachtree Publishers, 1994.
- Kushner, Malcolm. The Light Touch. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, 1990.
- Morreall, John. Humor Works. Amherst, MA: HRD Press, Inc., 1997.
- Paulson, Terry. Making Humor Work. Los Altos, CA: Crisp Publishing, 1989.
- Weinstein, Matt. Managing to Have Fun. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster, 1997.
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