We spend so much time at work. Shouldn’t it also be important to let off some steam, laugh, and have fun with your coworkers?
When teams are having fun, they become more creative and open-minded. Our brains secrete the happy hormones that are more likely responsible for good ideas and innovative solutions.
Here are a few ways to create a fun and happy workplace:
1. Create Games and Fun Activities
Studies have shown that games can help in reducing stress. We all love playing games. It’s a great escape from all our worries and anxiety. Playing a 20-minute game every day will help you feel included and connected to your team.
Fill the break room with exciting games such as Table Tennis, Foosball, Chess, board games, etc. You can also conduct fun activities, such as friendly sports competitions, cooking competitions, scavenger hunts, the human knot, etc.
When employees see C-level executives and their direct managers playing volleyball or badminton at a company outing, they see a human side of leaders. This stays with an employee for a long time, and it makes their bosses seem more human and approachable.
The whole point of playing games and fun activities is improving interpersonal relationships, exposing and addressing issues.
If you have a remote team, tools like Trivia can help you run virtual games and fun quizzes. Take remote team building to the next level with Trivia.
2. Create Opportunities for Socializing Outside of the Office
Friendly relationships create a fertile ground for teamwork and prevent competitiveness and mistrust among coworkers.
Set up a happy hour once a month or book tickets to attend a football game together. Team lunches, dinners, picnics, or coffee outings can be a great way for coworkers to unwind and get to know each other in a social situation. If your employees become friends, they are more likely to be happy in their positions.
Don’t shy away from organizing annual meetups. A retreat is important for teams to understand better who they work with and how each team member thinks.
3. Recognize Milestones, Both Big and Small
Do you recognize your team achievements and milestones regularly? Celebrating work anniversaries and small wins is a way of showcasing your gratitude to them.
A few examples are high-five emails to the team, handwritten letters, shoutouts on social media, feature them in the company’s newsletter, a surprise day off, a wall of fame, etc. Find some great employee recognition and appreciation ideas here.
You can create some wacky and unique awards that your team can strive for as well. You can also integrate an employee recognition and reward tool like EngageWith. Employees can appreciate and recognize peers, juniors, or managers by giving them Kudos or Shoutouts for a job well done.
Celebrating birthdays is also a great way to socialize. It’s a special time where employees can take advantage of a break and talk and relax with their coworkers while eating birthday cake and drinking a cup of coffee.
4. Encourage Mindfulness Practices
Why not make mindfulness a part of your office culture? Try having a monthly event where your team can learn a new mindfulness practice, such as meditation, yoga, or laughter yoga class.
Giving people some simple mindfulness apps can help them become more aware of how they feel and react to emotion, more observant of their inner and outer worlds, and more present in how they listen and communicate, raising the overall level of consciousness in the workplace.
Studies show that meditation training can improve your ability to focus on one thing at a time and help curb your tendency for distraction.
5. Incentivize Wellness (and Make It Fun)
While a health seminar may sound like a decent idea to help employees improve wellness, it’s not something that will get your team excited.
For a wellness program to work, you have to get buy-in and make it something that’s enjoyable for your team. Yoga, healthy snacks/lunches, steps challenges with tracking devices, or workplace fitness challenges have all been a hit at Springworks.
According to Inc, businesses can expect an average ROI of $5.81 for every $1 spent on employee wellness.
You can also offer virtual fitness classes to your employees who are working from home. You can conduct such sessions through Zoom or Google Meet.