A study by Bell Leadership Institute found that the two most desirable traits in leaders were a strong work ethic and good sense of humour!
I choose to work in a role that allows me fulfil my purpose, honour my values and actualise my potential on a daily basis. While this sounds serious, and it is, I even run group coaching sessions called Serious About Success (SAS)!, what underpins a lot of the things I get to do is humour.
Humour is one of my core values. If I find myself in a situation that is suffering from ” humour drought ” then I start to feel the same physical symptoms as I do when I’m dehydrated.
Sometimes when we take life too seriously we forget to see and share the humour in ourselves and in others.
“ A sense of humour is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done” – Dwight Eisenhower
According to Michael Kerr the author of ‘The Humor Advantage: Why some businesses are laughing all the way to the bank’, the amount and type of humour in an organisation is a down to its culture. If at its heart there is a value of humour, people will feel more comfortable sharing their humour and it becomes a culture style of behaviour.
I am so happy to say that humour can be found at the heart of PSG as it is one our key values and is a big part of what sets the rhythm of how we operate as a business.
Ultimately I find I not only love my job because of what I get to do, I genuinely enjoy my job because of the people I get to work with, my team , my students and my clients.
I enjoy the people because they bring humour in to our interactions, whether its used as a learning tool through telling funny stories, or its used to influence our creative thinking or even as a stress buster, it’s a key ingredient to how we connect on a very human level.
I wasn’t surprised, but very much reassured, when some recent research from the International Coaching Federation (ICF) identified humour as one of the key qualities for a coach’s success.
To add to that, an International Survey by Robert Half found that 91% of executives believe a sense of humour is important for career advancement, while 84% feel that people with a good sense of humour do a better job.
Our PSG October theme is Get It Give It.
The purpose of this theme is to evoke positive meaningful interactions between people. You get something positive, you give something positive. I would like you to consider a goal of Getting and Giving humour for a week. Notice something funny and pass it on, don’t let it pass without paying attention to it.
One of my favourite quotes is ‘ Where your attention goes your energy flows’.
Put some attention on humour. What have you got to lose ?
And staying with this theme, I would like to share a real story that happened to me last Tuesday on a business trip to the UK.
I arrived in to Birmingham airport Tuesday morning for a 2 day executive leadership team offsite I was facilitating. My clients as always had very kindly organised my travel and provided a pick up from the airport to take me to the offsite location.
Coming out of arrivals I looked for my taxi pick up who was to have my name visible on a name board. Its not a big airport and it’s a fairly small arrivals hall and easy to see the few drivers there with name boards.
I was a little surprised to see my name wasn’t there. No problem, I had time I waited for a while to see if my lift would show up. After about 10 minutes I called my client to check the arrangement had been made, it had and I was told the driver was there. I assured my client there was no driver with my name – they all had other people’s names.
Maybe my driver went to use the facilities I will wait a little longer.
I noticed as passengers arrived the other drivers were all meeting their lifts, all except one!
He did have a name board with a name on it and it wasn’t mine.
I moved closer to him to check if he had the right name, maybe there was a mix up ?
Just as I got to him his phone rang
I heard him say “ No, I have the name board and it can clearly be seen”
I started to move away and I heard him say “ Who, Maureen Hewitt, NO, I have the name board. That’s not the name I was given”
I went back to interrupt politely and tell him “ I am Maureen Hewitt, I think I’m the passenger you are due to meet”
He said “ No, I have the name board”
He went on to show me the text from his central office.
It said….“ Pick up the passenger in arrivals and use the name board”
He took it as “Pick up the passenger in arrivals and use the name “ BOARD”!!!
He had written on the name board the name ‘BOARD’ – I had to laugh, a lot and then some.
It took him a couple of seconds for him to get it…
We both laughed out loud.
When I think of it, I can still see the driver with the board in his hand with the name BOARD on it… too funny.
Got a funny story – give it some one else to enjoy
At PSG we like to say Get it Give It
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