#233: When Fun Is Work, Workers Find the Ha-ha in Their Bosses

It’s true. Every cloud has a silver lining.

Here’s another. Working from home and mandated social distancing have curtailed the stupid notion of fun at work. And hopefully killed that oxymoron, the festive office party, once and for all.

(Stop reading now if you have fun at work, if you expect fun at work, if you demand fun at work, or if you like obligatory gatherings with co-workers in your personal time. You will not find any fun in reading what follows.)

Here is something that I don’t find at all funny. Companies who want, no, who insist that you have fun at work.

Actually, I do find it funny. Funny-peculiar, not funny ha-ha. How can fun be fun if it is mandated!

Fun is defined as light-hearted pleasure; amusement; playfulness. Play is fun when it is spontaneous. When fun is compulsory, then play becomes hard work. Thus, by implication, work cannot be play.

Nor should it. The business bottom line matters not to make someone rich, but because so many families depend on it for their livelihood. Viewed this way, work is serious, because it has serious consequences.

When it is trivialized into formalized fun, then funny peculiar things tend to happen. And things go wrong.


Because when workers are told to have fun doing what isn’t inherently funny, they look for the ha-ha in their bosses.

Welcome to my side of the nonsense divide.