When you’re wading knee-deep through a prolonged business drama or a nightmare project, it’s all too easy to get sucked into a humourless quagmire. Even the daily routine of business can stealthily drain your personality and turn you into a robot.

Some perspective, however, shows us that business, like life, treads a fine line between being dreadfully important and ludicrously futile. After all, most of us are not saving lives in what we do.

And even medical professionals that are saving lives use humour to manage stress and maintain the focus that enables them to perform under pressure. Plus therapeutic humour is used to improve patient outcomes throughout the health industry.

Whether you’re selling insurance or fixing fences, if you can maintain your sense of humour at work you’ll not only be happier, you’ll perform better.

I’m not talking about practical jokes, telling gags or a wearing a Donald Duck tie. It’s just about being yourself, taking your personality to work and relaxing.

Want more articles like this? Check out the work styles section.

Friendly banter in business can deliver real benefits. It can:

  • Instill confidence
  • Create rapport
  • Put people at ease
  • Drive creativity
  • Show intelligence
  • Reduce stress
  • Indicate to the world that you are on top of things.

If your work sucks all the humour out of you all the time, then your work sucks. Laugh at your clients, laugh at your colleagues and most importantly laugh at yourself.

As the barman said when the horse walked into the bar, “Why the long face?”

Are you having a laugh? Let us know your thoughts on using humour at work.

“ I’m not talking about practical jokes, telling gags or a wearing a Donald Duck tie. ”
 
Peter Crocker

Peter Crocker is a director of Flying Solo responsible for marketing and advertising. As a business copywriter he partners with digital agencies and corporate clients on websites and digital content. He’s the co-author of Flying Solo Revisited – How to go it alone in business.

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