Page 4 - VOICE October 2014

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"
There is little success where there is little laughter."
~Andrew Carnegie
“A well-developed sense of humour is the pole that adds
balance to your steps as you walk the tightrope of life.”
~William Arthur Ward
In our day to day work life we are constantly beset by
troubles and challenges. If we are not too careful our job
becomes serious at best, and tedious at worst. It is for
this reason that every great leader has the ability to use
humour at correct moments to get more out of their
team. This can come to pass by laughing at our own mis-
takes, making light of the troubles we face, or simply
sharing humourous stories from the weekend.
As Leaders we have the ability and responsibility to
shape our departments and organisations at any time. I
can think of no better time to insert humour than when
things get stressful, but it is welcome by your team at
any time. And beyond blowing off steam, there are a
number of very constructive reasons to let a little hu-
mour into your department:
Approachability
– By engaging with your staff in a
lighthearted way, you increase your approachability
which is necessary for you to be up to date on chal-
lenges and successes in the department.
Creativity
– Humour breaks up the monotony and
gets our minds out of the rut we find ourselves in
when doing our daily tasks. It is these breaks in think-
ing that often lead to new ideas and solutions.
Reduces Stress
– It’s hard to be stressed out when
you’re laughing, and stress in the workplace is no good
for morale, health or teamwork.
Increases Productivity
– If you’re having fun at work,
your tasks tend to flow quicker and with more preci-
sion. As a leader, you’re also apt to have less turnover
if your staff is enjoying themselves.
One thing that I have instituted recently in an effort to
insert a little humour into the day is a daily joke (a clean
joke) that I e-mail to the staff in the middle of the day. I
think sending it in the middle of the day is
the best way to get the most out of the
points listed above. This direct approach
works well for my team, for others it may be
just as much about displaying a humourous
demeanor at the right time.
Regardless of the approach you take, I hope
you will seriously consider the importance
of at least a little laughter in the workplace, I
know you’ll find it beneficial.
Why Great Leaders Laugh
By Cameron Morrissey
By Cameron Morrissey
Author of
The Manager’s Diary
and
The 7Deadly Sins
of Leadership
Book Review
Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull
Together and Others Don’t
by Simon Sinek
In this new book, Simon Sinek dissects the art of leader-
ship and in particular the impact that a values-based ap-
proach to leadership can have on culture and organisa-
tional performance. His central idea is that people per-
form best when leaders create a
Circle of Safety
for their people.
He explores why so many com-
panies and leaders have difficul-
ty creating that circle as well as
citing some extraordinary ex-
amples of organisations that do
it successfully.
As Sinek has done for his previ-
ous books, he cites the biology
of leadership behaviour to sup-
port his ideas. He also offers
insightful and moving examples of extraordinary perfor-
mance happening in a culture which encourages innova-
tion and excellence.
I really enjoyed this book and once again I think Sinek
has offered us some key insights into how we as leaders
can create organisations where people
want
to work and
perform.
Reviewed by John Frost
Managing Director at Values Based Leadership
Publisher: Portfolio Penguin
If we are not too careful our job
becomes serious at best, and tedious
at worst. It is for this reason that
every great leader has the ability to
use humour at correct moments to
get more out of their team. ”