Building a positive work environment for your employees is fundamental for the success of any organization. A study by BrightHR found that employees who have fun at work are less likely to take sick days and more likely to report feeling creative at work and committed to their organization. In another study, the University of Warwick measured the impact of happiness on employee productivity and found a 12% spike in productivity among happy workers and a 10% drop among unhappy workers. One way to cultivate a fun work place for your staff is to encourage bonding between fellow employees through memorable moments. These memorable moments can be created in various ways, but with the recent passing of April Fools, we decided to take a more comical look at what could build a fun work environment. We took to the web and found these “Safe for Work” pranks to pull on your co-workers:
1.Add a note to all your electronics including the coffee machine, toaster, microwave, which reads “Newly upgraded and Voice Activated”. Be amused as your fellow co-workers try and talk/yell at their electronics.
2. Get an old pair of pants and shoes and put them in the stall of the bathroom. Leave them there all day and see how long it takes someone to notice.
3. Put a blow horn under the seat of a co-workers desk. Every time they sit down, they will get an alarming surprise!
4. Place a cup upside down on your co-workers desk with the words “Do not move unless you plan on killing it!”. To enhance the prank, add a little fake spider to put underneath it. I personally would be terrified to go near my desk for the day!
5. When your co-worker is not looking, tape the sensor on their computer mouse. See how long it takes them to realize that there is something wrong and make sure that when they do figure it out, a nice message is waiting for them!
Pranks can be a great way to have some fun at the office, but keep in mind that everyone has their limits. Here are some things to keep in mind before pulling pranks.
1.Do you think your co-workers can handle the prank? Make sure your co-workers can handle the joke. Pick someone who you have a good working relationship with.
2. Do you have the time? Good pranks take time, make sure your work load can afford to take on a prank and that your work productivity won’t suffer because of it.
3. Don’t be a bully. There is a big difference between pulling a fun prank and hazing someone. The goal isn’t to humiliate your co-workers, it is supposed to lighten the mood, have a good laugh together and have fun.
4. Don’t mess with people’s food. You never know what kind of allergies a co-worker might have. This is serious stuff, so make sure to leave food alone and come up with other pranks that will get everyone laughing, including the person being pranked.
Understand boundaries and limits. Pranks at the office should be fun and create memorable stories that you and your fellow co-workers can share. Understanding that everyone will take/perceive a prank differently and to be cognizant of this fact. Don’t do pranks that may cross the line and cause animosity at the work place.
If “pranks” are not for your business, there are many other ways to create a positive, fun work environment and culture in your organization. Salopek & Associates has helped many companies cultivate policies that encourage and support a positive/fun work environment. Contact us to discuss more about what services we can offer you to build a work culture that is right for your organization.