The Dallas Examiner
As the classic saying goes, “Laughter is the best medicine,” but it could also be the best business strategy. According to a Bell Institute study, most employees dislike their bosses due to poor work ethic and a lack of sense of humor, resulting in staff shortages and slow productivity.
Humor can be a vital tool in the workplace. During the third annual Expand Business Men’s Conference, Aug. 9, comedian and business consultant William Hale shared different ways how leaders can inspire their staff one laugh at a time.
Before you exercise your comedic chops at work, Hale advises that you start from the basics: lose the ego and know your audience.
“Leaders need to know not only in their office but also in their marketplace,” he said. “You have to know your target audience and the people in your organization and what motivates them.”
Most entrepreneurs are aware of the importance of building relationships but tend to primarily focus on associating themselves with established businesspeople rather than potential team members.
“If you don’t build relationships with people above you and below you, you are not going to succeed,” Hale explained. “It’s not your goal to have followers. It is your goal to create leaders.”
Once relationships are created, they have to be maintained, especially among your staff.
Hale encourages entrepreneurs to not be afraid to share personal stories about themselves and past business mistakes so they can inspire and appear “more human.”
Productivity is essential, but work doesn’t have to be so serious. A Fidelity survey found that employees age 25 to 35 would be willing to take a salary cut for a happier work environment. Fun team building activities and casual breaks with staff members can prove very helpful in the workforce.
“One of the things I do just to motivate my staff is on Mondays I’ll put a picture up in our breakroom and say ‘Caption this,’ and the best caption following our meeting get a gift card or something like that,” Hale said as he explained one of his fun staff activities. “That’s just a way to build competition, camaraderie, and have a little fun doing something they might like to do, but it’ll keep their minds engaged in what they had to do.”
But don’t let the fun times stop there. The comedian stressed that the final and most significant element is to present this joyous experience to clientele whether through several unique incentives. About 55 percent of customers will pay extra if they like the seller and their services, according to Defaqto research.
“Customer engagement is the most important thing that you do,” Hale said.