Humor at Work: Laughing in Times of Uncertainty, March 18, 2009

1. Laughing in Times of Uncertainty

As I mentioned recently in an article for the Globe and Mail
newspaper, humor at work is needed now more than ever. Humor
gives people a sense of control in a time of uncertainty,
helps to pull people out of the dungeon of doom n’ gloom news,
and can create unity in the workplace by creating a sense that
“we’re all in this together.”

So double up on the fun. Remember to celebrate, even if it means
lower-key celebrations and celebrating smaller milestones than in
previous years. Create some new fun workplace traditions that
reinforce positive social interactions. Use humor to stand out
from the herd with your customer service, which matters now more
than ever. And invest heavily in the things that really matter in
any workplace: your people, your culture, your core values.
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2. Mike’s Fun at Work Tip

Several folks have told me they are getting stressed and depressed
listening to the news on the way into work. So here’s a simple
thought: TURN OFF THE RADIO! Instead, listen to some comedy CDs
or humorous podcasts. And create a recommended listening list or
library of resources to share with your fellow commuters.
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3. Quote of the Week

“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable
man persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore
all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” George Bernard Shaw
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4. It’s a Wacky, Wacky, World

This has got to be my all time favorite study: researchers
surveyed 34,000 Britons and discovered that the funniest whoopee
cushion sounds are long and whiny, with the hilarity peaking with
a seven-second whoopee burst. And, here’s a surprising result
(because I’m sure we could have all anticipated the seven-second
long and whiny finding): women find whoopee cushion sounds
slightly funnier than men do. (I can’t believe that all this time
I’ve been misusing my whoopee cushion.)

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