This week I am writing about our 3rd Corporate Core Value-“Have Fun and Be Healthy”. Years ago I had the privilege of working at the world famous-Mayo Clinic. One of the two Mayo brothers who started the Mayo Clinic, Dr. Charlie Mayo, was once quoted as saying; “There is no fun like work!” Is your work fun? Unfortunately most American’s don’t think so. Most Americans do not like their jobs and see it only as a pay check. How sad is that?! What makes for fun at work? What is appropriate fun at work? Sometime these questions are difficult to answer and the culture of different work environments vary but I believe leaders should cultivate a culture of fun at work. I sometimes close my Friday emails to our team by saying, and…. “Only three more days until Monday!” Yes, some team members think I am….correction…know I am crazy, but I look forward to work each Monday as work to me is definitely challenging and fun and I hope the same goes for you!
When I’m hiring new team members, after integrity, I am most impressed with a good sense of humor during interviews as it indicates to me that the candidate can communicate comfortably and get along with co-workers and customers. Don’t get me wrong, we take our work seriously, and our students/customers’ needs seriously, but what we do isn’t brain surgery.
I recently read the book “Nuts” the great story about the startup and success of Southwest airlines. When a management research company asked the employees of Southwest Airlines what mattered most about their jobs, they discovered that “having fun at work” topped the list. Years ago, I read that what employees appreciate most about their supervisor is-1st Trust, 2nd Warmth and 3rd A Sense of Humor.
I believe it is important that we give up the notion that professionalism means being serious all the time. It is critical to our success that team members be able to relate well to our students and clients. Wearing a smile, exhibiting a sense of humor and having fun at work creates a positive work environment and is one of the reasons why so many students tell me they love attending school at CCC, CSC or OTC!
Below are ten things which I believe will help each of us to have fun and be healthy (mentally and physically) at work:
1. Laugh often-laughing relaxes tensions, changes attitude and increases the body’s natural painkillers.
2. Be Happy-you are responsible for your own happiness. Happiness starts in your head. Like making a great golf swing-you have to visualize it first before you can make it happen.
3. Maintain only cheerful and positive friends-negative people see difficulty in everything.
4. Enjoy diversity in the workplace-How boring would it be if everyone was as perfect as you are? J Our strength is in our diversity.
5. Keep Learning-Henry Ford said, “Anyone who stops learning is old anyone who keeps learning stays young.”
6. Stay Active and in Shape-Exercise is good for our mind as well as our body. The human body is the only machine that wears out faster if it isn’t used.
7. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff-We can’t escape stress, but we can avoid creating unnecessary stress. Focus on the things you can control.
8. Don’t take guilt trips-Rather take a trip to some location you have always wanted to visit. Europe is nice, but if you can’t take a long trip take a short weekend or day trip. Looking forward to a trip can also be a stress reliever.
9. Enjoy Simple Things-Be thankful and show gratitude for the things you have, instead of focusing on the things you want.
10. See Yourself as Youthful and with Endless Energy-Vision is not so much about what you think as how you think.
Work should be fun, but fun shouldn’t be work!