Humor at Work: Mr. Feel Good, December 3, 2008

1. Mr. Feel Good

I recently spoke in lovely, laid back Bermuda, where I learned
about an unusually happy local named Johnny Barnes. Also known
as “Mr. Feel Good” and “Happy Man,” Barnes has waved and blown
kisses to drivers entering the city of Hamilton for five days
a week since 1983! A life-size bronze statue of Barnes has been
erected at the town entrance as a tribute to his endless energy
and spirit. Although admittedly some folks I talked to thought
he was a little crazy, most people thought he was an amazing
ambassador for the island nation and that his small contribution
helped many people look forward to their morning commute. Barnes
has even been honored by Queen Elizabeth II.

People like Barnes are a great reminder of two ridiculously
simple workplace messages that we need to embrace. Message #1:
Barnes simply decided one day to be curious, take a risk, do
something different and stand out from the herd. Similarly,
you have the power to choose the attitude you bring into work
every day. Message #2: Attitudes are highly contagious. One
person has the power to infect an entire team in either a good
way or in a soul-sucking, Dilbert-like way. So the choice is
yours: do you want people to think of you as “Mr./Ms. Feel Good”
or as “Mr./Ms. Suck the Life Force Out of Every Living Thing
You Come in Contact With.” (Helpful hint: If you choose the
latter, you probably aren’t getting a statue . . .)
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2. Mike’s Fun at Work Tip

We’ve talked about the need to create a rotating “corporate jester”
position on your team, so why not create a rotating position of a
“morning greeter” – someone to greet folks with a cheery wave,
a high-five, or a fresh cup of piping hot coffee.
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3. Quote of the Week

“Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand.” Mark Twain
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4. It’s a Wacky, Wacky, World

Here’s something to ponder during your coffee break: A University
of Colorado study found that people who held a warm cup of coffee
in their hands for 10-25 seconds had more positive impressions of
total strangers, whereas holding iced tea in their hands had the
opposite effect. (Does that mean if you hold a warm stranger
close to you, it will improve your impression of a cup of coffee?)
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Copyright Michael Kerr, 2008. www.mikekerr.com

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