Monday 1 April 2019

Book ~ "Humor That Works: The Missing Skill for Success and Happiness at Work" (2019) Andrew Tarvin

From Goodreads ~ If you want to increase team productivity, relieve stress, and be happier at work, you could hire a bunch of workplace consultants, invest in scream therapy and put Pharrell Williams on repeat - or you could just read "Humor That Works".

Written by Andrew Tarvin, the world’s first Humor Engineer, this a business book on humor. No, that’s not an oxymoron. It really is a business book and it really is about getting better results by having more fun. Because people who use humor in the workplace are more productive, less stressed and happier. No joke; sources included.

The goal is not to make you funnier - though that may be a side effect - but to make you effective-er. You’ll learn to develop a personal humor habit that’s not about spitting wisecracks or telling the funniest stories but a way of seeing work in an energizing new way. You’ll build on some of the most important business skills for today’s work environment, develop techniques for leveraging humor, and take action to improve your work immediately. And you’ll have fun doing it.

There will be stories about grandmas who text, multiple mentions of milkshakes and exactly seven references to zombies. Oh, and there will be puns (you’ve been warned). Looking for success and happiness at work? Discover the missing skill of "Humor That Works".

I like reading "business books" and the fact that this one was based on humor that works made it even more interesting to me.

The author has a degree in computer science and engineering.  He started his career at Proctor & Gamble as an IT project manager.  With experience in improv, he realized that people are more likely to do something if it was fun so he started adding humor to his presentations, email and started an internal blog.  A few years later, he left P&G to become the world's first "humor engineer" to solve corporate problems using humor.

This book will help you improve your humor skills but not how to be funnier.  The chapters are:

I.  The What and Why of Humor
  • Humanity's desperate need for humor
  • Why choose humor
  • Defining humor that works
  • The skill of humor

II. The How of Humor
  • Humor and execution
  • Humor and thinking
  • Humor and communication
  • Humor and connection
  • Humor and leadership
  • Success and happiness at work

III. Debrief - includes "no excuses" resources

I liked this book.  It was a good reminder that there are things you may not like to do but if you add fun and humor to it, you may enjoy it more or at least make it bearable.  If there is something you don't like about your job, you are responsible for it ... it's up to you to either change it or change the way you think about it.  This book lets you know how to make your work environment fun whether you are an employee or in a leadership role.

I also like the writing style.  It was interesting, and humorous and silly at times.  I'd like to read other books by this author.

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