It’s no secret that practicing law can be tough. It can be stressful. It can certainly play with your emotions. But no one ever said that coming to work can’t be fun, too.
I’ve worked at various companies, and my co-workers and I have always taken our jobs very seriously. However, we also realized that at times, when appropriate, it was important that we let loose a little. It was not only good to bond with one another outside of work-related situations, but it also helped us get through difficult weeks knowing we had something to look forward to on the calendar. Plus, connecting outside of the office and getting to know each other on a different level led us to collaborating together better at work.
Here are five ways you can have more fun at work:
Let the Games Begin
Ping pong, wall-climbing, Go Karts, slides, and even volleyball courts. Why should tech companies have all the fun? OK, so you’re not going to put a trampoline in the middle of your law office. Of course, law firms usually have a different culture than many tech companies. However, any company can set up an area where employees are encouraged to clear their heads for a minute. Set up an area with some comfortable couches along with a chess set, puzzles, books, games, and/or a television. The idea is to create a space where people can zone out for a bit.
Did your firm just win a huge case? Call everyone together for a quick toast. Win a critical motion for a client? Meet after work to do the same. The key is to celebrate successes, big and small.
Of course, there are also the holidays: Have a costume contest on Halloween and a holiday cookie exchange in December. St. Patrick’s Day is coming up. Why not ask everyone to wear green and then, at the end of the day, you can have a Guinness (if appropriate) and listen to U2 together. Also, there’s nothing wrong with celebrating “just because.” Order in lunch once a month and eat together in a common area. You’ll be amazed by what a few slices of free pizza can do for morale!
Decorate Your Desk
Whether you’re a solo or you work in an office with dozens of people, you can still have a little fun. Brighten up your work space with pictures of your family and friends—ideally ones from a favorite vacation. Hang a few special thank you notes that you’ve received. Obviously, you need to keep within the culture of your organization, but if your office is the type of place where it’s ok to paint your walls a fun color than go for it. You can also help encourage whimsical design elements throughout the whole office, not just your desk. Check out this law firm in New York City for some clever ideas.
Leave the Office
From baseball games and cooking classes to comedy clubs and dinner parties, law firms across the country have fun together in various ways. However, you don’t need to plan an elaborate, expensive outing to do this. Plan a potluck BBQ at a local park and, if your staff is up for it, have a kickball or softball game or a karaoke contest. Choose a movie, restaurant or bar and tell everyone the time and place to meet if they’d like. Head to a local escape room. Remember, there shouldn’t be pressure—this is supposed to be fun!
According to a recent article in Forbes, “Corporate wellness programs have come a long way in the recent years. With growing popularity, it’s safe to say that corporate wellness programs are no longer just a “fad,” and they are here to stay.” Some options you might want to look into: Stress management classes, health assessments, tutorials on how to meditate, or group yoga classes. Another option: Choose a local 5K or charity walk that everyone can do together. Sign up as a team and do the walk or run together.