Why having fun at work boosts employee productivity

Employee engagement


According to a report which has just been released by BrightHR, having fun at work is imperative to employee wellbeing and productivity.

Having worked in conjunction with business psychology company, Robertson Cooper, the recent survey found that staff who have fun at work are more likely to report higher levels of psychological wellbeing than those who don’t. As well as this, employees were also found to be more motivated, better at working with others, more supportive of their colleagues, more committed to their jobs and less likely to take time off work.

Unfortunately, achieving the right balance of work and play is something that many employers find difficult. This is especially the case when staff and business owners seem to have conflicting opinions of what fun means to them.

For example, 58% of workers say that having colleagues who they get on with and enjoy spending time with is very important to them. Only 38% of business owners feel the same way however.

There also appears to be a big age divide when it comes to fun in the office. 51% of 16-24 year-olds say that allocated ‘fun time’ at work is very important to them whereas only 19% of 55-60 year-olds feel the same.

The report also found that men and women tend to prefer different types of activities. Interestingly however, the likes of office parties, choirs, board games and swingball are all activities that appeal to both genders.

Employers have been warned that introducing ‘fun’ into the office requires a bit more effort than simply adding a pool table to the lunch room or allowing dress down Fridays. Furthermore, trying to force people into having fun is unlikely to have the desired effect either.

The good news is however that it doesn’t always have to be up to senior management to organise everything. Although employees have stated that they do enjoy company activities which have been set up for reward and recognition for example, they also like to be spontaneous and organise their own celebrations and activities.

If you’re still not convinced that about whether or not the office should be a bit more light-hearted, the statistics on employee engagement speak for themselves. When it comes to taking time off work because of illness, 62% of those who have engaged in fun activities at work had no sick days in the last three months compared to 38% of those who did not have fun.

Those who have taken part in a fun activity in the last six months are also more likely to feel creative in their roles (55%) compared to those who haven’t (33%). When it comes to staff retention, 58% of those who have fun in their jobs say that they are more likely to stay loyal to a company compared to 46% of those who don’t.

Do you think that being able to have fun at work has a big effect on productivity and engagement? Feel free to share your thoughts with us below.

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