Office humour. What is that? Let me elaborate it for you. How many hours do we spend at work? Minimum 10-12 hours, right? That’s quite a bit of our waking hours, for those of us who actually hibernate. When in office, you don’t want to feel like you are in a prison cell or a confession box. If you do, let’s change how you feel. Pull a Chandler Bing and see how things transform. Now, this is what office humour is all about. In a way, we do eat, sleep and work at the office. The forty winks can do wonders and a bowl of Maggi at 4 pm is a tonic for both mind and body. Jokes or as we like to call it – office humour? Their effect is levels higher!
Moving forward…”A recent study of Gallup data for the U.S. found that we laugh significantly less on weekdays than we do on weekends. Work is a sober endeavour.”–Harvard Business Review
I get a chance to prove Harvard somewhat incorrect, for the very first time. Imagine my delight, I am surfing high! Actually, I get to say that the data is slightly unfair. They should have rephrased it as “most of us laugh significantly less on weekdays”. There is always a Phoebe or a Chandler around the corner and every research data should account for it. You won’t believe the number of Phoebes and Chandler couples are procreating today.
I remember the last time someone at work cracked me up with their sense of humour. It was this morning at 11 am when I apparently had an imaginary meeting with my boss. I agreed to work weekends and he gave me next week as a complimentary off for all the hard work I put in this week. We high-fived our ‘office humor’ moment! Yes, I know you don’t get it. Well, that’s the thing about workplace humor –not everyone gets it.
And, another thing about work humour – not every employee gets it. There is always a thin line between being goofy and being completely amateurish. I think we all know what the latter entails. However, there has been a drastic shift in mindset when it comes to having fun at work.
Humor in start-ups?
Start-ups are using wit and hilarity to stand out as a brand and a company to work with. They try to create an upbeat atmosphere that doesn’t let any employee yawn more than 10 times on a work day. That’s an achievement! Trust me, I have seen people nap for hours in offices, with their eyes open.
All you readers out there, I might have to pay heftily for this one. You better support me. Jokes apart, we are an awesome team. Will Ferrell and Tina Frey would be proud if they knew us.
Why office humour works?
Not sure how employees or employers at your workplace will respond to humour? How about testing the waters? Maybe with a presentation? That would be formally and professionally hilarious! I could help you with some great pointers on how humour at work is healthy and an awesome stress buster. Of course, experiencing it for yourself might help.
Humour makes the employee/employer more approachable
It does. I was able to go up to my boss and ask him for a counselling session. After a couple of minutes into the session, he realized I needed a psychiatrist because I was certifiably nuts. I couldn’t agree more! One of the best sessions I have ever had. Yes, that’s how approachable we are.
Office humour makes one more creative.
It’s true. The ha-ha-ha-ha-ha’s always ladder down to an ecstatic aha!
Office humour breaks the tension down
You can bring employees/employers together with laughter. When things in a meeting room heat up leaving a stale whiff of sweat and tension, humour acts like a suction that will just suck it all in and help you begin on a ‘fresh’ note. Yes, long story short, it is an ice-breaker!
It increases productivity
When you are on office humour high, you function better. That’s what research says and I do manage to meet most of the deadlines – it can’t be wrong now, can it?
Facilitates human connection.
Do you know what the memes on the relationship between Obama and Joe Biden feel like? They thaw my heart. Imagine that between you and your boss? Am I getting through you?
Employees/Employer start looking forward to coming to office
Now, this is what we call success! So, if you feel all chuffed up every morning to get to work – Trust me, it works.
So, next time your manager or boss is pulling your leg or your employee is yanking a Phoebe… laugh a little. They mean no harm – it means they trust you and want you to be a part of all that fun. All work and no fun makes a company a gloomy/uninteresting one.
Of course, this can get a bit complicated because you need to ensure you are a bit goofy and not completely unprofessional. I told you before, there is a thin line. We all know racist jokes are not going to make one giggle or chortle! Come on, you are smart enough to figure this one out.
You need to be aware of the office humour code and what really works. What Jack, the content writer, finds amusing, Jill, the research executive, might not. Yes, getting it dead-on when it comes to humour and building this fabulous kind of work culture isn’t easy folks. But, when you do get it spot-on like us and create that right balance, every day is just downright crazy good! So, who is in?