I was reminded recently of a story that I used to use in my training about a company that placed a great emphasis on having fun in the workplace. It led to high levels of staff engagement, loyal customers and a worldwide reputation.
The story is about a fish shop in Seattle called Pike Place Fish. The shop became more famous when a book and video was made about it and used internationally to encourage us to create environments where people had fun at work. At Pike Place Fish the staff yell out the orders and literally throw your fish across the shop to be wrapped. Customers go there partly for the fish and partly for the experience.
Why is having fun at work so rare? If you consider that many of us spend half our waking hours at work, it strikes me as even more important that we like it and have fun. What can you do to create an environment that is more conducive to people enjoying themselves? The website below will give you some ideas.
You might be wondering what having fun has to do with leadership? I believe it is the responsibility of the leader to create an environment that gets the best out of people, and that is more likely to happen if they are having fun.
PS: Go to www.fishphilosophy.com for more info on Pike Place Fish. The above photo was taken by my client and friend Richard Tonkin from Bulbeck EnviroSolutions when he visited Seattle, especially to experience Pike Place Fish, which I had told him about years before!