August 10, 2021

165: Have More Fun at Work with Dr. Bob Nelson and Mario Tamayo

Do you enjoy working? Would you say you have fun at your job? Unfortunately, most of us associate work with stress rather than fun. But fun at work doesn’t need to be a rarity. Teams that incorporate fun and recognition boost morale, engagement and retention. And fun comes in many forms, so it’s possible to increase the fun without beer, ping pong tables, or karaoke.

Today’s guests are Dr. Bob Nelson and Mario Tamayo. Dr. Bob is considered the leading advocate for employee recognition and engagement worldwide. He has worked with 80 percent of the Fortune 500 and presented on six continents. He has been featured extensively in the national and international media including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, CBS 60 Minutes, MSNBC, ABC, PBS and NPR about how best to motivate today’s employees.

He has sold over 5 million books, including 1501 Ways to Reward Employees, 1001 Ways to Energize Employees, The Management Bible, 1001 Ways to Engage Employees, Managing For Dummies, and his latest book: Work Made Fun Gets Done! Easy Ways to Boost Energy, Morale, and Results.

Mario Tamayo is a Principal of the Tamayo Group, Inc., a no-nonsense, no-frills consulting firm specializing in leadership and organizational performance. With extensive experience in the human performance and organization development field, Mario has been training, coaching, and consulting with individuals and teams in leadership and communication skills since the late 1970s.

The three of us talk about how to have fun at work. Why fun is important, what fun really is in the context of work, and ideas for how to incorporate fun into various work settings. Get ready to have some fun!

Members of The Modern Manager get a free copy of the book Work Made Fun Gets Done! Easy Ways to Boost Energy, Morale, and Results. Get your copy when you join the Modern Manager community.

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Read the related blog article: What “Having Fun at Work” Really Means in 2021

Key Takeaways:

  • 85% of employees feel overworked and underappreciated.
  • Create “Daily Fun Habits” like rewards for unexciting tasks and “Fun Lists” in addition to “To-Do Lists” to be sure to include at least one enjoyable activity each day.
  • People have different opinions about what is fun. Ask your team what they want to do with an online poll and scheduling options.
  • Create a “Fun Committee” responsible for planning fun events for the whole team, department or organization.. The most effective fun events at work are often low or no cost.
  • The Greatest Management Principle In The World is: what gets recognized gets repeated (and done even better). Recognition is crucial for people to feel valued at work.
  • Send out a survey asking how your team likes to be recognized. Do praise rounds where everyone shares what they like about a colleague. Seeing ourselves as others see us is a moving experience
  • You can program fun into virtual meetings with things like sharing photos of favorite vacations, doing home tours, or pet intros.
  • You can assign “praise buddies” for virtual staff so that each person notices and shares the good that another does with the team.

Additional Resources:

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