Did you catch this great news? Laughter is not only the best medicine, but it makes us better workers, too! Great news for those of you who (normally) enjoy the water cooler banter with colleagues and organizing the office parties–all of your efforts are justified!
I love tips about increasing productivity, but this one is extra special. Now, how does this news relate, say, to training efforts?
Well, I’ve facilitated lots of training of trainers (TOTs) and I’ve written lots of curricula that other people deliver. One of my great challenges is in convincing novice facilitators that the fun activities are written into the training to, yes, be fun breaks and to allow opportunities for team building, practical application of learning, and create lasting impressions of the materials. Those memories, especially when laughter is involved, can be the most lasting impression of a training and, thus, can help learners to recall other elements of the training. If you are a novice trainer, challenge yourself to pace your trainings to allow for the active components of the training. If time is running out, consider restructuring your training to limit the PowerPoint or the lectures before you ax the activities.
So, the moral of this story is…don’t skip the ice breakers, the energizers, and the activities. Your team will be more productive because of it.