Thursday, 4 March 2010

Raise the Umbrella and learn how to keep others dry

I was reading through one of my fellow bloggers sites and reviewed some of the pictures of the decades and could not help but be depressed by the insanity of the world we live in and our ability to inflict pain and suffering on each other. All of us have a responsibility to lift our game both individually and collectively to make this a reality. Now, I am not asking that we all become charismatic in engaging self righteous individuals. I do think we can all take the world a little more seriously and do our bit to increase the human interaction to a much more charitable and forgiving place. I remember reading a quote from Mother Teresa and forgive me if I am not exact on the words, but she did say that she would never join an anti-war rally, but a rally for peace, she would be there every time. I do feel we can shape people thinking by focusing on the positive. My point is not to turn you into a jokemaster, but rather to help you find ways to look at life from a different perspective. So, with that in mind, here are ways to inject some levity into your workplace.

Lampoon hypocrisy. Challenge those who talk not live the talk.
Take the high and mighty down a peg. Let’s not take ourselves too seriously. Make it safe for people to make light of your shortcomings.
Put up an Umbrella and dance. As a leader, learn how to raise an umbrella so all the crap falls away and you take responsibility for what happens under that umbrella. Keep it light, keep it fun, keep the trust alive.
Point out absurdity. Be the one who people look to, that focuses on truth. Be the one who dreams the dream but people look to be inspired by, not scared of. Look to be the one people follow naturally and instinctively because of the truth and trust you give.

The point is not about working and being committed. It’s about the manner in which you do it, the mindset you bring to it, the engagement you create in other people, and the sense of purpose and humour you bring to it.

As with all things humorous, tread carefully. Avoid jokes that lampoon gender and ethnicity; if you suspect a joke may be taken the wrong way, act on that assumption and don't use it. The point of humour in the workplace is not telling jokes; it is to lighten the mood.

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