Perhaps the number one humor in the workplace question I get asked is this: “What do you do about the fun suckers?”
Here’s a few thoughts.
-There’s always going to be fun suckers, so you’ve got to learn to live with them.
– If you’re thinking long term, then make sure your organization/team stops hiring fun suckers! They’ll be with you a long time, and some folks are predisposed to sucking the life force out every room they walk into, so make your organization is hiring for attitude, which, as we all know, is far less trainable than many skill sets.
– Ignore them. I’ve seen too many teams and workplaces embrace a lowest common denominator mentality by letting the fun suckers win. I think you need to make sure that when you are trying new things and creating fun events, that everyone has an equal opportunity to be included, but that does not mean you have to force people to participate. (Forced participation brings to mind the old joke, “The beatings will continue until morale improves.”)
Creating more innovative, inspiring and fun places to work means you’ve got focus on the top 10% of folks who are leaders, champions and innovators. The folks who crave REAL and substantive change. If you focus on the top 10%, others will follow.
Even, sometimes, with a lot of encouragement, the dreaded fun suckers.
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