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Motivational Speaker Blog

Fun at Work Test- How do you Score?

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Mon, Dec 29, 2014 @ 04:50 PM

funny motivational speakerHumorous Motivational Speaker, Jody Urquhart

How Fun is Your Organization?

Be here now. Be someplace else later. Is that so complicated?

Let fun at work happen, it will energize, motivate, and keep talented people on your team. Laughter’s invisible energy is a very powerful thing.

To be flexible and innovative in the face of leadership and change; take yourself lightly so you can take your work seriously.

Take this test.

How often do you hear people laughing at work?

A) Hardly ever

B) A few times a day

Select the word that best describes your organization:

A)  Practical

B) Innovative

 

A) Traditional

B) Imaginative

 

A) Down to earth

B) Visionary


A) Highly professional

B) Personal


A) Critical

B) Encouraging


A) Impersonal

B) Personal


A) Punctual

B) Relaxed


A) Regimented

B) Organized chaos


The more B’s you have, the more likely your organization is a fun place to work (if you have 2 or less B’s you may need help). Everything about fun is fluid, resilient, accepting, relaxed and engaging. The moment something becomes regimented, difficult, controlled or impersonal it is no longer fun. If you were playing a fun game and someone tried to control the outcome and regimented rules, objectives, timelines and personal quotas, the game would no longer be fun.

 There is no objective to having fun, because fun is in the moment, you are not trying to plan or plot. The whole objective is just to be there in the moment and have a good time.

Control the Work not the People doing the Work

Organizations are built around goals and objectives- so is it impossible to have fun at work? If you have had fun working before- than you know it’s not. The nature of work itself should be built around objectives and goals but this doesn’t give you license to control people.

I was a guest speaker at a conference and the keynote speaker suggested, If a work community suppresses humor, it is likely that it also suppresses communication, teamwork, leadership because employees’ humanness is restricted.

Humor helps define the human being. Humor is a way people express their true, intimate core selves, including their vulnerable, foolish, irrational, ridiculous sides.

Humor and the fun make these regimented environments fluid, engaging and flexible. Fun adds balance to regime. Fun personalizes structure.

 The more structured, organized, and planned a work environment is the more you need to have fun. Fun adds the fluid personal aspect that keeps people motivated and balanced.


Fun is an insurance plan

 Without it when things go wrong, the structure and plan fall apart, this regimented work environment collapses (or the people do). Highly structured organizations rely on logical analytical cause effect reasoning where employees can be rigid to respond to changing situations

When work environments are fluid and people are used to being flexible, they can laugh in the face of challenge and adapt to the new environment.

Organizations that are highly regimented and controlled are usually not trend setting and innovative. They prefer structure to change. They avoid conflict because it affects the status quo.

Humor conveys membership and builds cohesiveness. When you walk into the office and hear people laughing and talking this is a great thing because it means people like each other, they trust each other and they enjoy working together.

Funny often means giving up control

Questions to develop your leadership potential

1. Do I use humor as part of my leadership style? Why? Why not?

2. How have your past use of humor influenced the expectations of your co-workers?

3. What kinds of humorous situations or stories have you found most effective at work? List some acceptable and unacceptable topics.

4. What works best for you: self-effacing humor or humor that is directed (positively) toward coworkers? Why?

Experiment with responding to others in a way that is lighthearted.

Look for the funny honey..

Human beings are strange, unexplainable, hilarious creatures. Just notice how people look, what they say, what their intentions are. Notice the gaps; notice that interactions and feelings are unpredictable and messy. We are all beginners, all amateurs at being human, at interacting with others. Life is Messy and people are funny because they can be prejudiced, predictable, and picky. Find the humor in it.

Remember: Every time you laugh you orient your heart and mind

Regular Columns

1) Oh Lighten Up! Your quick, easy lighten up tip for the month

  • View your life in context. Even world leaders realize they have limited ability to affect others’ lives. While we might think taking the weight of the world on our shoulders is admirable it’s not good for you.
  • Pay attention to children and emulate them. They are the experts on playing, taking life lightly, and laughing
  • throw a pajama party at work

2) Game Spot - a fun quick activity you can use this month at work

  • Ask a group to brainstorm for five minutes on the qualities of the ideal team member and lists the qualities on a flipchart. The qualities range from having an excellent sense of humor, to being very serious about their work, to being an excellent goal setter and time manager.
  • Present definitions for “skill” and “attitude” and have the group come to agreement: A skill is something we learn, like riding a bike or speaking another language. Attitude is how we feel emotionally about those skills.
  • The group then decides if the items on the list are skills or attitudes (some may be both). Generally, attitudes dominate (approximately 85 percent to 15 percent)

3) Appreciation Station. A way to recognize, celebrate and appreciate people

  • HUDDLE UP! Create a tradition, stop everything your doing and “huddle up” for recognition moments. Everything stops for a few moments to recognize a great associate.
  • Simply stop. Stop chasing. Stop calling. Stop meeting. Stop worrying. Today, take a moment to stop what you are doing, call your people together, and give someone a much-deserved pat on the back.
  • Or make it regular and Start every work unit meeting with praise for accomplishments and behaviors since your last meeting.
  • A pep talk worth doing

4) Art of the Unexpected- Some funny simple tasteful pranks and other unexpected things you can try if you dare to throw people off guard and keep it fun

  • When someone wins an award the next day send out a memo to say the award has been discontinued
  • Go up to a complete stranger and ask if you can have your photo taken with them
  • Get some water guns
  • Get up, jog on the spot for 10 seconds and then sit down again.
  • Go up to a cashier and tell them your dog told you bad things were going to happen today and they should be prepared

 Jody Urquhart is a professional speaker who compels stressed-out and fed-up professionals to rediscover their passion, purpose & sense of play. To discuss having Jody speak at your next meeting please call us at 1(877) 750-1900 or email jody@idoinspire.com

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Tags: guest speaker, leadership and change, humorous motivational speaker, fun at work

Motivational Speeches about Understanding the Upside of Down

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Mon, Dec 29, 2014 @ 04:05 PM

Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment."
-- Jim Horning

Putting all self development instruction aside, when everything goes wrong the very last thing I feel like doing is being positive!

“Look on the bright side,” others will say. Because it’s illegal to kill them, I have had to consider this fluffy inspiration and advice - to try it and assume it'll be a success.

I am a female motivational speaker, so I have to believe in this Pollyanna stuff. One of my favorite motivational speeches is a spoof on all this Rah-Rah inspiration. We know from experience that we can't just push the conflict under the carpet and pretend it's not there.

Yet, when I look back at any tough times I have had, I see that's where I have learned the most. It had to get bad to make me uncomfortable enough to have to want the change, and in the end the change was for the better.

"A satisfied need ceases to motivate," said Maslow.

When things go wrong it causes breakdown that's difficult, but that creates equilibrium in that situation.

If things we wanted were easy to get, we probably wouldn’t even want them anymore.  We aren't made to enjoy and respect cherry-picking for any length of time. We have to go through challenge to appreciate what we have and how far we've come.

The reason we have conflict is because we care. If we don't care, we won’t get upset in the first place. If it does not matter to us and if we have no investment in the outcome, then the outcome just doesn't matter. Leadership and change happen when we care and we have the courage to face reality.

We have to go through the challenges of life to gain wisdom, and not until you experience something can you really appreciate it.

A motivational speaker who suggests that life is to be perfect all the time, despite reality, misleads the audience. That speaker is wrong.

Sink down lower than you’ve ever sunk

It may be a cliche, but it's true:  When you hit the bottom there's nowhere else to go but up. While you're building back up, you're building character through success. When you go through really tough emotional times, it can help to remind yourself that life can only get better from here. The next time things go wrong, you know that you can handle it, that you’ve done it before and were a success, so you can do it again. Life is about change. All of life is about change, from the seasons to plant and animal lifespans. You and I are changing every minute of every day, fashioned by every experience and every exchange we have with others.  Like it or not change happens, and when you realize that it's usually for the better, it delights you with the motivation to face new challenges and life goals.

As a female motivational speaker, I give these three ideas about change:

Change Builds

Character. Change creates challenge, and challenge has the capacity to teach people about their limitations and their gifts. When things go wrong or mistakes are made it builds humility; when we overcome new obstacles, we build our gifts.

Wisdom. A new level of sensitivity and relating to others comes from surviving life challenges.

Gratitude. When we have it all, we tend to take it for granted. When what we have is taken away, we often gain a new appreciation for what we had and a new recognition of what we still have. When you fail to appreciate life you lose your joy.

By confronting problems you can find healthier solutions. In the midst of chaos, loss and frustration you may be learning to:

  • Balance toughness with sensitivity
  • Go deep inside and embrace fear for real self development
  • Build mental and emotional toughness
  • Persevere toward success
  • Be on purpose when you're off balance
  • Be hard on problems and soft on people
  • Manage perceived threats
  • Deepen social support
  • Believe, have hope, and find inspiration
  • See change not as interruption, but as opportunity for leadership and self development to steer your life

It's easy to disengage and detach from life when things aren’t the way you want. It can be easy to avoid struggle. However, distancing yourself from conflict, leadership, and change only makes the situation worse - it prolongs the change and postpones your date with responsibility. Passivity leads to a victim mindset, and soon complaining takes over while you feel your life is controlled by others.

Develop compassion for yourself given the circumstances, understand there will be some good in this bad.  Take a deep breath and decide how you are going to handle the change in your life!

Watch Jody In Action

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Tags: motivational speaker, leadership and change, motivational speeches, humorous motivational speaker, success

How to Manage Stress within your Sphere of Influence

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Mon, Dec 29, 2014 @ 03:44 PM

 

Below are some major organizational sources of stress followed by a chart offering antidotes and suggestions for what employees can do to manage that stress within their spheres of influence.

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Tags: Woman motivational speaker, humorous motivational speaker, Humorous speaker, Humorous tips, Energizing tips

Tips to Introduce a Motivational Speaker

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Fri, Aug 08, 2014 @ 01:36 PM

I was recently a motivational speaker for a large insurance summit.  In front of an audience of 1,000 people; the gentleman introducing me dropped his water on my (paper copy) introduction, and he couldn't read the words.

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Tags: motivational speech, humorous motivational speaker, introduce a motivational speaker

Lifting the Veil on Depression

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Thu, Apr 03, 2014 @ 04:16 PM

Depression has hit my life. I don't personally experience it, other than the occasional glum mood. Yet, like most people, I have friends and family members who pop pills in hopes of normalizing their moods.

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Tags: motivational talk, humorous motivational speaker, depression

Keys to Be Innovative

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Mon, Feb 24, 2014 @ 07:32 PM

This article was originally published on 2/24/14, but has since been updated with new and more relevant content.

Why is it that once you find your keys, you stop looking? Because you have already found them. In a busy fury to get stuff done, most people make daily choices to do things the way they are always done. We stop looking for a better way.

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Tags: keys to be innovative, humorous motivational speaker, motivational speaking

Inspiration to Make the Most out of a Meaningless Job

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Wed, Jan 15, 2014 @ 08:32 AM

Most people have had the experience of participating in mind numbing work. Waking up every day resenting your alarm clock screaming at you just so you can drag your butt into work.
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Tags: humorous motivational speaker, humorous motivational speech, meaningless job

5 Steps to Reach your New Year's Resolution

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Tue, Jan 14, 2014 @ 11:02 AM

Reach Your New Year's Resolution

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Tags: humorous motivational speaker, motivational talks, new year's resolution

A Meeting Planners Audio Visual Malfunction

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Tue, Dec 17, 2013 @ 05:51 PM

On November 19 & 20, 2013, I was a humorous motivational speaker for the Camping in Ontario Conference at the Marriott Rousseau Resort in Minett, Ontario.

This stunning new facility, nestled up on the ridge outside of Muskoka ontario, is breathtaking.

Despite one glaring problem: the hotel has neglected it's internal Audio Visual issues. I served as an opening and closing humorous motivational speaker for conference. During my first motivational speech, the microphone pooped out after ten minutes of use. The AV company, PSAV quickly set up and configured it's own speaker system, taking 15 minutes out of the motivational talk.

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Tags: AV, guest speakers, humorous motivational speaker, meeting planner, Audio Visual Malfunction

Should You Hire a Motivational Speaker for a Company Christmas Party?

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Mon, Dec 16, 2013 @ 03:39 PM

Now that the holiday season is in full swing, I have been a humorous motivational speaker for several company Christmas parties.

Most organizations either host a band, a comedian or hire a motivational speaker to celebrate the occasion.

Either can be successful as they provide meaningful entertainment that can break the ice and warm people up for networking and deeper connection. 

Last night I was a motivational speaker for a construction company. The president contacted me after seeing me give a motivational speech at an industry event. He suggested that they normally have a band but people often left before they had to endure seeing their peers grind on the dance floor.

He decided to take a risk, try something new and hired me to deliver a humorous motivational speech. The awards, dinner and desert went past 11 pm  and people were drinking and eating a lot, so I gave a short (one hour) funny, interactive motivational talk. 

 

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Tags: humorous motivational speaker, humorous motivational speech, Hire a motivational speaker for your company chris

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