Play at Work

If everyone had to write down a list of words that described their job, I don’t think “fun” would be at the top of many lists. Work is tough. Work is work. A job is full of challenges and responsibilities and most people compartmentalize fun to the hours after five o’clock.

Here’s the trick: your job SHOULD BE fun. But at some point, when you applied, or accepted an offer, something about this job must have been worthwhile for you to commit your time for it.

You may have lost sight of the “fun” behind the crushing weight of tasks, deadlines, cranky co-workers or clients.

I would never suggest you trivialize your job, or force yourself to treat issues that matter like they don’t. A flippant attitude isn’t the answer. But you can open yourself up to “playing” at work.

When we talk about improvisors performing, we refer to it as “playing.” On stage, you must open yourself up to the endless possibilities of what can happen from scene-to-scene or show-to-show. There is a sense of discovery and exploration.

That opportunity for you to flex creative muscles exists off stage too. By changing the way you approach work issues you can help make yourself love what you do.

“When we bring a sense of play into our work environment it opens up new pathways to solutions and allows for innovation,” according to Kristen Schier, university professor and one of PHIT Comedy’s corporate workshop facilitators. “Play exchanges convention and rigidity for novelty and flexibility. Play fosters creativity and adaptation all while inviting new possibilities… and let us not forget joy!

Our workshops can help people retrain how they think about work. We encourage you to look at your job not as an obligation you have to fulfill, but as a role for you to star in.

Here are a few ways you might be preventing yourself from having fun at work:

  1. You’re stuck in a creative rut: if you’ve become a slave to an implied system of doing your job, you’re missing out on new opportunities to approach work.
  2. You’re assuming “no”s – Sometimes our inclination to shoot down our own ideas prevents us from exploring opportunities we never realize.
  3. You’re focusing on the wrong things – If the amount you dread doing something is proportional to how long you put off doing it, you’re sustaining the worry. Spend your time focusing on the more engaging parts of your job.

To help you or your team rediscover fun at work, contact PHIT Comedy about our corporate workshops using applied improvisation today.

We Trained *Everyone* at Philly’s Fastest Growing Start-up, Curalate!

The entire Curalate team got together in Philadelphia last week for the start of the year, and after our workshop with a smaller division in 2016 they decided to have us train the whole company. Curalate is the fastest growing start-up in Philadelphia and is coming off a year of explosive growth (as a simple example, the number of participants in the workshop grew by 20% between the time we booked it and when it happened… a little less than month).

With so many new people and offices now in three states working as a team and communicating well has taken on added significance to Curalate. With a young, engaged workforce they know that presenting learning in new and interesting ways keeps their employees happy and is effective. Working with PHIT Corporate on a larger scale for this training was a natural fit and we were happy to return to a company we already knew and build on our past work

Coming at the end of a week of various meetings and talks, we brought all of Curalate’s close to 200 employees to our location and spread them across every available stage, rehearsal hall and classroom we had with a team of 9 facilitators for a session that put the emphasis on fun but also had a curriculum designed to teach important skills like working as a team, communicating, and collaboration.

It was especially nice to come into the office today and have heard that on the surveys every employee completed before they went home at the end of the week our activity got the highest marks of anything that happened in the 5 day retreat:

A screenshot showing all 56 responses would be boring to read, so just picture the number of exclamation points continuing to increase as you go down.

Do you have a large event that needs that extra something, but you don’t want the time to only being about getting your employees out of the office? If you contact us we can work together to create a special morning, afternoon, or evening for your entire company that will be a blast and have folks learning important skills or values through applied improvisation so that everyone wins.

PHIT Corporate Trains Birthright Israel NEXT

Today we got the staff at Birthright Israel NEXT’s Philadelphia office up on their feet and improvising in a really fun afternoon of improvisation exercises designed to help the teambuilding among everyone at this new office .

Birthright Israel is already well-known as the organization which gives young Jewish people an opportunity to visit Israel for free. Birthright Israel NEXT is a part of the Birthright Israel Foundation that works to maintain and grow the connections participants made on those trips when they return to the United States by encouraging people to attend events in major cities and also providing support (in the form of free meals and materials) for Birthright alumni who want to host Shabbat dinners. They’re currently expanding their staff across the country and we hope to work with them again soon!

Birthright Israel NEXT’s storefront office in South Philadelphia may be nondescript, but their staff were a blast to work with and we’re excited for the growth of their organization!

PHIT  has worked with a number of religious and religiously identified cultural groups over the years – including a crew of Catholic bishops, a retreat of protestant priests of different branches, and followers of Shambhala Buddhist teachings. Maybe you’ve got a cultural or religious group that could use some fun teambuilding, would enjoy an afternoon of learning to improvise, or has specific goals for development that applied improvisation could teach in an out-of-the-box way? Reach out and let’s discuss!