Photo credit: cohdra at morgueFile
YOU CAN'T SLAP A CLOWN NOSE ON A BAD ATTITUDE
No Mandatory Joy, Please
A company or workplace cannot mandate happiness -- although some are trying to do just that. Of course, happiness and humor are supportive of a well-functioning business. But the science of bringing laughter and enjoyment into an organization is being refined.
More and more researchers are looking at what is called "positive psychology." In the recent past, what makes people happy, what makes working environments fun, has often been approached in a simplistic, one-size-fits-all fashion.
Immune to Gloom? Choose a Custom Injection
Not every employee wants to wear a clown nose or odd headgear, or chant "ha, ha, ho, ho." Not all workplace members want to attend a standup comic routine on company time. Humor cannot be applied like a band-aid on low morale or dropping productivity.
Humor, happiness, and joy are very personal matters. Many find their greatest sources of enjoyment and funniness away from work. Yet now we are seeing clowns
and comedians and silly props being introduced into our work life.
Is that inappropriate? No! A Loosen Up, Lighten Up (LULU) shot in the arm of a business will always have very positive effects on the health, bottom line, and resilience of an organization. But the vaccine against gloominess and boredom and drama-zone attitudes must fit the particular organization and its particular employees.
Of Course Happiness Is a Good Idea, But . . .
The field of positive psychology is showing us that raising the happiness level of an organization or of an employee is very individual. Taking a one-size-fits-all approach can have very detrimental effects.
If you are going to raise the humor quotient, the number of laughs, the broadness of smiles, in your workplace, you MUST tailor your program to your workplace. What lightens up a law firm may be very different from what brings some laughs and a more positive attitude to a hospital's nurses; or a group of electricians; or an assemblage of accountants, salespeople, call center personnel, or realtors.
Gauge It for Yourself
Want to assess what will lighten up YOUR organization? Here's a free report (PDF).
Other Lighter Wisdom posts. Scroll down to see them all.