Is Your Workplace Laughing Enough?

April 7, 2017

Is Your Workplace Laughing Enough?

By Susanne Dalton Dupes In Communication, Corporate Culture, Employee Engagement, Workplace stress with Comments Off on Is Your Workplace Laughing Enough?

We always had a copy of Reader’s Digest at home when I was growing up. The monthly publication had several humor sections, including my favorite, “Laughter Is the Best Medicine.”

There is a lot of wisdom in that title, especially in today’s workplace, where stress is a huge problem.  Do a mental look around your workplace right now. At any given time, would there be a larger percentage of workers smiling and laughing, or frowning, studious, or with knitted brows? Your answer tells you two things about your culture.

Companies that foster lighter cultures with real laughter in meetings and hallways are likely to have lower levels of stress. Two reasons why their stress is lower are:

  1. When people are laughing together, they are bonding. One measure of workplace stress is how much social support employees feel. When laughter creates bonding, it also creates social support.
  2. Laughter is recognized as having strong health benefits. The Mayo Clinic says that over the short-term, laughter causes you to take in more oxygen, which stimulates your heart and brain. It soothes tension in your muscles.  And it cools down stress responses. Over the long-term, Mayo says that laughter can improve your immune system, mood, personal satisfaction, and even relieve pain.

If we did one of our workplace stress assessments at your organization, do you think you’d find that your employees have plenty of social support? In other words, are they laughing enough?

Let me know if you want to find out for sure.

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