How to Make Work Fun (and Productive) for Everyone
When people talk about their jobs, they often discuss their duties, co-workers and the overall environment or culture. They might also talk about what they do to stay productive. However, the fact that the company understands how to make work fun is frequently not part of the conversation.
Some people believe getting stuff done means they can’t also have fun at the same time. Fortunately, people can learn how to make work fun without sacrificing a steady workflow. Here are six strategies to make that happen.
1. Let People Vote on Which Spotify Playlists They Want to Hear
Spotify has numerous playlists for work productivity, and they could be the key to making work fun. Consider giving people a few choices and letting them pick what they want to hear.
You can have people nominate the playlists they think are most appropriate as a starting point. That approach enables participants to learn more about their colleagues’ music tastes.
Studies show that listening to music at work could have positive effects on efficiency and creativity. However, research also finds that listening to music with lyrics could be counterproductive, making it necessary to pick the mixes carefully.
2. Conduct Workplace Polls
Considering that statistics show fewer than a quarter of workers feel connected to their peers, it could be time to demonstrate to the workforce that they have more in common with others than they think. Then, people could find it easier than before to fit in at work, which may positively affect productivity.
Emphasize that employees shouldn’t take more than a minute to choose poll answers. Otherwise, the survey could become a time sink. Keep the topics lighthearted, but informative. For example, you might ask which books people are reading — requiring a write-in answer for the poll.
Or, you might ask whether they prefer dogs or cats, or which sandwich shop they go to most often. Think about adopting a routine of starting a new poll each Monday and announcing the results on Friday evening before people go home.
3. Start Brainstorming Sessions With Icebreaker Games
One of the frequently recommended ways to increase productivity through better communications is to have regular, informal meetings. However, it’s crucial to have distinct purposes for those gatherings. One great reason to meet is to brainstorm about projects or other necessities.
If people feel anxious in group settings, they may not feel willing or able to contribute ideas. That’s why it’s a good idea to kick off brainstorming meetings with quick icebreaker games.
It may initially seem like taking time to do these activities is counterproductive to getting things done. But, when people are more relaxed and happy among their peers, they may feel exceptionally ready to chime in with ideas. Aim to spend no more than five to 10 minutes doing an icebreaker game at the start of a meeting.
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4. Set Up Challenges and Celebrate Achievements
Most people naturally have a bit of competitiveness in them — and sometimes substantially more. Creating challenges can help people get focused and learn better collaborative skills with others during collective efforts to reach goals. Challenges also make mundane tasks seem more enjoyable.
Then, whether an individual or a team wins the challenge, have a mini-celebration for the feat. Doing that recognizes the hard work your team put in, and it could help boost overall morale. Appreciation is crucial, especially since 66 percent of people say they would likely leave their jobs if they didn’t feel appreciated — and the percentage is even higher among millennials.
5. Help Employees Embrace Seasonal Cheer
It’s difficult to stay committed to tasks around the holiday season when your head is filled with thoughts of shopping for gifts, baking cookies and decorating your home. However, bringing holiday cheer into the office could make the space more enjoyable.
For example, people might decorate their cubicles with Christmas lights or put tiny, jingling bells on their shoes. Near Halloween, they might don pumpkin jewelry or neckties.
6. Understand the Ideal Work Environment Is Not Universal
If employees feel forced to work in uniform ways that don’t suit their needs, productivity will plummet, and people will start getting grumpy. Working outside on a sunny day could make productivity flourish for some individuals but be distracting for others. Moreover, open plan offices might be exceptionally upsetting for introverts.
When possible, managers should accommodate the reality that people’s work habits are as individualized as their personalities. That may mean allowing people to work from home on some days or come in an hour earlier than everyone else to tackle tough work before the area becomes noisier.
Fun Environments Promote Productivity
Some workplaces are so focused on productivity that they lose sight of fun. Fortunately, it’s easy to get things done and have fun — which could keep employees’ moods upbeat, making them ready to work at optimal levels.
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