Joy. You can feel the places that have it, and the ones that don’t.
It’s not about en enforced fun – the organised pub quiz or bowling night. Not that there’s no place for them, but it’s at least as likely that they’ll be cringemaking as it will that they’ll be fun. In reality, it they may well be both at once for different people.
No, it’s not about that. It’s about how it feels to be at work, whether there’s laughter or smiles or positivity. Shared (natural) celebration or fun in giving something new a go.
But I worry about joy (though I try to bring joy to my worrying 😉).
Where does joy belong in remote work? Sure, I’ve laughed on Zoom calls. But the spontaneous joy of a shared experience – whether about work or not – be it a show you and I both watched yesterday, a football result, an astonishing piece of crochet I saw on Etsy which I think you’ll love, that unreleased Bowie song that made its way onto Youtube … Where do those sit in a remote world?
Indeed – without the concept of “an office”, how would you know if a place was joyful to work in at all?
Some may say that work is work, and that is all. That joy doesn’t have a place there. Or even that this has been replaced by the joy of being at home.
And they may well be right.
But for me and many others, we want to do work in a place where there is joy. And create joy where there is work.
If you have always been, or have recently switched to remote only (and believe me, I see the benefits there too – both for the company and the humans it is stewarding), does joy have a real place in your work? And if so, how?
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