Every employer today is struggling with the idea of keeping his employees happy. High salaries & perks are not always the answers. What matters really is engaging the employees & making the office a “fun place”.
After all we spend more than 1/3rd of our day there!! However what impresses the new gen employees are smarter ways of having fun while at work. Something they relate to, something different, something they can value.
Many employers have chosen to organise traditional/black-white days, festive celebrations, birthday celebrations, dance parties, sports, yoga/ meditation, trek/ reading clubs etc. These options have not only become old & outdated, they are also expensive in nature. Firstly the cost of organizing these events is high & secondly it needs huge space. Also the employees are required to spend time after work hours or on weekends to entertain themselves. With the “work-life-balance” phenomenon taking the centre stage, many employees opt out of these events since they do not wish to sacrifice what they call “family-time”. Besides, the clubs etc work only for a certain set of employees who are interested in them. Not many employees see value in these celebrations.
The 10 ways of having fun while at work give employees the much needed a break from their stressful jobs. Most of these involve less time, low cost & have high entertainment/ fun/ relaxation value.
Bring Fun to the desk:
Bring over the caricature artists, cartoonists, and tattoo artists right next to your employees. They sit around & create fun environment for all. Each employee would take not more than 10 minutes, so no productive time is lost. Benefits: No time loss, not expensive, no movement involved, huge fun!
Competitions in Bay:
Organise contests like best out of waste, logo competition, collage competition etc. Make teams within the work area & give employees a day’s time to come up with their creation. Provide all the raw material & let their imagination go wild. Benefits: No movement, low cost, Employees work on it when they take breaks, employees with critical timelines can opt out, crates competitive environment & helps bonding.
Where regular fun events might be a hindrance, organize a week full of events once in a quarter. Eg: A fun week might have a series of 5 games like Thambola, Su-do-ku, and Treasure hunt etc. & can be wound up with a movie. Alternatively, a Health week which is of high value to employees can be organized. Check up camp, session on fitness & stress, foot massage, health tips & water bottle distribution can leave your employees feeling cared for & engaged. Benefits: High employee value, less time involved, employees can pick & choose what they want to attend/ participate in.
Once in a month, organize “Happy Hour” where all the employees come together for an hour. Reason- unlimited ice-cream, chats, snacks! The intention is to get people together for sometime & let them have fun. Benefits: Networking, Less time lost, suitable for small teams
If employees do not have enough time to get up from their desk, take fun to their desk tops. Send a weekly “Thank God Its Friday” quiz/ Su-do-Ku/ Crossword to them. Benefits: No movement, no cost, no time loss.
Games in Break-out Areas:
Place games like Scrabble, Word Power, Chess etc near the coffee tables. They don’t occupy much space & can be a good break over the coffee. Benefits: No space loss, low cost, high relaxation value.
One a week, schedule 15 minutes break for the teams within their work areas. Get them together to play Dumb-cherrads, pictionary, 1 minute games etc. benefits: Low cost, No movement, quick relaxation.
Place musical instruments like a guitar in the break out areas which will be available for the employees. This would give the employee a break & entertain others. Word of caution: Ensure it is not placed in an area which can affect other employees or create nuisance value for those on calls & in meetings.
Organise hobby classes for painting, craft, Music, cartooning, calligraphy etc on Thursday/ Friday & during lunch hours. Source the talent in-house, if you are lucky you will find someone within who can teach the art, else several trainers (mostly young college students pursuing fine arts turn out to be good inexpensive trainers). Benefits: High value add, long term tool for stress management
Organise photography, dancing, painting workshops to encourage employees to learn something new over 15 days. Benefits: Developing a hobby & spending fun time with colleagues. Bring people closer, relieves stress, removes barriers, and helps bonding.
It’s the fast paced world and no once can wait. Not even to have fun! Its cutting edge competition out there, so bring it on fast, best & cheap. These options work best when there is a need to have quick fun time & less time & money (when did we ever have more?) are involved. Sure shot ways to having high participation & no loss of productive time.
The best part is high budget approvals and time-off approvals will no more be required!