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Principle 8: Have Fun

Fully 70-80% of your waking hours will be spent either at work or thinking about work. That is a stiff price to pay if you’re not having any fun. Many studies suggest that over 50% of employees don’t like their jobs; in essence they are not having much fun.

Can you have a good time and still be serious about your responsibilities and results? A resounding yes, especially when you consider that you are more energized, enthusiastic and productive when you’re happy and having fun. If you want to improve your employee’s performance, start bringing a sense of fun and enjoyment to your job and workplace.

This is even more important in tough economic times. People can become pessimistic and down when results aren’t meeting expectations, so having some fun is a great antidote to difficult economic environments.

Here are some ways to increase your fun quotient at work:

· Celebrate: Look for any accomplishment or result to recognize. Make a big deal of successes and schedule a fun activity to celebrate each one. That activity could be as big as taking everyone out to dinner or to a sporting event and as small as bringing in donuts in the morning.

· Schedule Team Events: Every quarter, schedule a team event, such as a barbeque, movie, paintball, miniature golf, etc. Build a team culture and history that people can continually relate to and discuss. It will always bring smiles to their faces.

· Contests and Competition: Get people excited about winning contests or other competitions within your team or against other teams. It’s not about the incentive as much as it is to create healthy, fun experiences for the team.

· Get Personal: Take an interest in your team member’s personal lives through recognizing birthdays, outside accomplishments, trips, etc. Try to be creative in differentiating each team member’s recognition.

· Be Creative: Have a brainstorming session with your team. Ask them, “How can we bring more fun, energy and excitement to our team?” Then, prioritize the top 3 to 5 ideas and go implement them.

If people go home after work and talk about what a great place they work at, then your team is not only having fun, but probably getting great results as well.

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Written by Steven Muntean in Leadership Principles

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