During a recent client meeting, the topic of having fun at work came up. The client described an office that included comradery, laughter and good old fashion fun. While the work we do for our clients is paramount to the success of our business, having fun while we do it not only makes our work better, but also keeps our team engaged and energized. A few years back, the Nuffer, Smith, Tucker team had the pleasure of hearing from Harry Paul, the co-author of “Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results”. Paul described the “Fish!” philosophy, which is based on the world-famous Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle. The premise is that if fishmongers who work in a cold, wet, smelly fish market can have fun at their jobs, then people in any workplace can do so, too.
In the forward of “Fish!” Ken Blanchard – one of the most influential leadership experts in the world – points out that we spend about 75 percent of our adult lives doing work-related activities. “If we spend that much time in that part of our lives, we ought to enjoy it and be energized by it,” he wrote. When Paul spoke to our team years ago, he left behind a souvenir … something to remind us to have fun, choose a positive attitude, play a little at work, make someone’s day, and be present in the workplace. So, from the depths of my office, buried under press kits, product samples and client-branded tchotchkes, I bring forth the return of the NST fish!
While the importance of having fun can often get forgotten in the midst of lengthy “to do” lists and tight deadlines, my hope is the NST fish can remind us to have a little fun. For those NSTers who didn’t hear Paul’s original presentation, feel free to pick up the book from my office … and don’t be afraid to toss the NST fish around cube-ville from time to time or leave it on the desk of someone who may need a little “Fish!” Fun.