[Comedy Writing Secrets
- Real work-world examples:
Kadee Acree, Senior Director, Professional Services, shares that “Kronos publishes a weekly a silly cartoon highlighting how customers use our software to solve everyday workforce management and payroll challenges. We recognize humor is a great stress-reliever. “
“My husband used humor a lot in his old company. He’d start their Friday staff meetings with a funny you tube video or movie clip. It wasn’t tied to any particular theme, but more meant to be fun and interactive,” Kadee adds.
“Humor was a great way to drive a lesson home. When I needed to prove to our sales force that our ink was the most water-resistant, I printed up bulls-eyes, each identified with our and computers printers. I armed the sales force with super-soakers and let ‘em at it. It was a mess, but it drove the point home in a fun and unforgettable way – even after they refilled their super-soakers with alcohol and drank in the lesson,” explains Dana Greyson, marketing consultant from a top Fortune company.
Watch Out for these Not-So-Funny Faux Pas
You’re in the winner’s circle if you can make it provocative enough for a good grin, but offend no one. Sound impossible? You’ll be fine if you heed these five workplace humor hints….
- Laughing with is ok, laughing at, generally is not. The exceptions are a common “outsider” enemy, peers laughing privately at antics among the upper echelon,
- Complementary humor is ok, but belittling humor is considered mean-spirited and does more harm than good. ”Humor–deftly employed–is a great way to win friends and influence people. You need to be funny, but not snarky (that’s not good for team building),” cautions author of What the Most Successful People Do at Work Laura Vanderkam.
- Keep it PC (politically correct)… especially avoid humor that targets gender, nationality and culture, sexual preference, disabilities, and, especially these days, politics. Outside work what you consider funny is your business, not your employers. Jokes made on social media might leak into your workplace; use prudence when you post.
- Multi-cultural? When working with different cultures, find out what’s considered not-so-funny and make sure they’re not joking matters.
- Treat humor like salt… know when to add it, and how much is too much. While self-deprecating humor lightens the workplace and makes its users more approachable, too much self-deprecating humor can undermine credibility. More than three jokes in a row without anyone else chiming is too much.
Seriously — “Funny Business” is Good Business
Now you’re in the know — it’s a proven fact that mood and humor have a direct impact on company profitability, performance, employee engagement, retention, innovation and differentiation. Humor and maintaining a good mood at work may be your secret to success when it comes to landing your next dream job or career advancement.
John Lennon, Beatles superstar, considered happiness his life’s work, and reminisced “My mother always told me happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy.’ They told me I didn’t understand the assignment. I told them they didn’t understand life.” So, get out there and have some fun – on the job!
Could Humor Be Your Key to Success?
Connie is the founder of Dorigan & Associates, an Executive Search and Recruiting firm that provides retained and contingency recruiting services for the Food Processing and Tech Industries. Connie also offers Executive & Leadership Services to high-level executives and Career Services to high-potential individuals on a career fast track. For more information on finding great talent or honing great talent already on the payroll, please visit her website at www.dorigan.com or call 503-635-8565.
© 2017 Connie Dorigan. All rights reserved.
This is a general interest article and does not constitute specific or legal advice.