Is having fun at work essential, or is it ill-advised and counterproductive? Is it meaningful and helpful, or is it a complete waste of time?
The answer to these questions will vary depending on who you ask — for a few reasons, such as varying personalities, preferences, and individuals’ differing definitions of fun. On top of that, companies and businesses all have different fun ideas, too.
Some workplaces are all business. Fun only happens once during external events and things like team-building activities or Christmas parties. On the other hand, other workplaces have fun woven into the fabric of day-to-day life.
Fun can be helpful at work, but more important is keeping the workplace feeling fresh and exciting.
But why is a fun, fresh workplace helpful?
1 Fun is Engaging and Inspiring
When a workplace involves fun in its design, employees may find a more relaxed environment to encourage growth. Having the freedom to take enjoyable breaks can help stimulate the mind and promote creativity to improve productivity.
When employees are allowed to unwind and blow off steam, chances are they’ll be able to come up with better solutions to problems or more creative strategies and designs for whatever it is they are working on.
Not to mention, a fun and engaging environment can help colleagues build rapport, encouraging team bonding. As a result, teams may be able to work better together.
2 Workplace Design Counts
The design of a workplace and the furnishings within play an important role in weaving some fun into otherwise monotone company culture. Well-designed office space can foster an environment conducive to trust, collaboration, and innovation. Positivity within the design can also help improve workers’ moods and morale.
Often, interior designers focus on work lighting, ambient lighting, and color theory to help put a little fun into a workplace. With a suitable motif and style, a workplace can evoke certain feelings and emotions from people.
It’s also a good idea to look beyond a place’s aesthetics. It’s also a good idea to look into the functionality of an office to see just how employees can benefit. Here are a few examples of things that may help employees become more productive:
- Different Sitting and Standing Stations – In today’s world, people are becoming increasingly aware of how detrimental it can be to sit for prolonged hours. Businesses usually provide desks and tables for their employees. Still, if it’s within the budget, a few standing stations may also be helpful — not just for employees’ health but also for their preferences.
- Collaborative Spaces – Many workplaces feature open spaces and designs that foster collaboration. However, if you prefer to keep workstations separated, it might be a good idea to have a room or two where people can meet and collaborate on projects.
- Solitary Spaces – Conversely, if your office’s design is more open, it might be a good idea to have a few places that allow for some quiet solitude. This will enable employees to go somewhere with fewer distractions if they feel like it.
3 Fun Furniture and Activities
We’ve all heard about how big tech companies and other massive corporations keep their offices fun. Some companies have buffets to keep employees fed and happy. Some have rooms dedicated to allowing employees to take naps and rest. And some companies have gyms or other game rooms.
Unless you have a big budget, it won’t always be possible to offer employees such benefits and amenities — but that doesn’t mean you can’t include an element of fun here and there.
A small space dedicated to reading or unwinding can help. Or, you could add something like a ping pong table. A ping pong table doesn’t take up much space, can be used by up to four people, and provides many physical and mental health benefits. Just keep it in a room a bit further from all employees as it can be somewhat noisy.
4 Ask Your Employees
If you’re unsure how to improve your workplace for your employees, one of the best things you can do is to ask your employees what they need. Sometimes, it can be as simple as providing a comfy couch for them to relax and blow off steam!