Most people use humor as a great way to break the ice and keep things light and fun in the workplace. However, through cultural differences, personality types, and life experiences, the use of humor can become offensive or make people uncomfortable. Where do you find the right balance? Jim and Jan discuss the importance of humor in the workplace and how to use your emotional intelligence to develop the right amount and type of humor for a company’s culture.
[2:15] Jan tells a joke. Brace yourselves!
[4:00] Most people want to work in a place where there is some humor or some form of light heartedness, but different cultures find different levels of humor acceptable and it can be difficult to tell how far is too far even when the intention is innocent.
[7:40] As a leader, it’s your job to create a comfortable environment, but how do you know whether something offends somebody or not?
[12:30] What does the internet have to say about humor in the workplace? Jim didn’t find anything particularly helpful. The information out there is very limited.
[15:55] If a topic is going to make people feel awkward, maybe it’s best to stay away from it. Your jokes should make people feel comfortable. For example, you should probably stay away from practical jokes in the workplace.
[20:50] Jim and Jan would love your thoughts on this subject! Please feel free to reach out.
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- “You never know in the workplace these days what’s going to offend and what isn’t.”
- “This person said that they can’t say anything without offending somebody. They’ve got to be PC.”
- “Sarcasm isn’t an excuse to belittle someone.”
- “I would rather live in a world where we have a little bit of humor and occasionally say I’m sorry sincerely than to be on guard all the time.”
These are the books mentioned in Jim and Jan’s podcasts.