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10 Reasons Why Your Friends Should Be Jealous of Your Workplace Culture

10 Reasons Why Your Friends Should Be Jealous of Your Workplace Culture

Have you read stories about how newer companies are changing the way we view workplace cultures? You know, there is the company with a built in slide to get from floor to floor or the companies that provide free food to employees.

Don’t even get me started about all of the awesome benefits companies like Google and Facebook offer to employees (free food, free gym, and free car washes just to name a few).

If you’re reading this article from your dull boxed in cubicle while sitting in a 10 year old office chair drinking crappy instant coffee, then there’s a good chance you envy the way many newer companies are transforming the workplace.

On the other side, if you’re lucky enough to be reading this from a bright, vibrant office in the lounge room while drinking a delicious organic tea, then there’s a good chance that your friends are completely envious of your workplace.

Not sure where you stand? Here are 10 reasons why your friends should be jealous of your workplace culture.

1. Your company has low turnover.

At a time when more and more millennials are job hopping and rarely stay in one position for more than a couple of years, having a low turnover rate is something to be admired.

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If your entry to mid-level employees are sticking around long term, there’s something keeping them there aside from just a paycheck. More than likely, it’s because they genuinely enjoy where they work.

2. People are always looking to join your team.

There are certain companies that have such a strong reputation of having a great workplace that people anxiously wait for a vacancy to open up so they can swoop in.

I hate to bring it up again (not really), but think about Google, Facebook, or Zappos. These are all companies that have received a great deal of attention not just for their economic success, but for their workplace culture.

If your company is known for being a great place to work, then people will want to work there.

3. The chain of command is a little more flat.

Have you ever worked at a job where you had 10 different bosses above you? A lot of older companies are setup with this more “traditional” hierarchy structure, but modern companies are proving that it doesn’t have to be that way.

Having a workplace where there aren’t 20 VP’s makes it easier for good ideas to be heard, and also gets rid of the whole “us against them” attitude that can ruin a workplace.

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4. People don’t have a case of the “Mondays”.

Let’s be honest. If you absolutely dread Sunday evenings because you know you have to go to work on Monday, that’s a problem.

Unfortunately, so few people get to experience working for a great company with a fun and exciting work culture that the “Mondays” has become way too common. Modern workplace cultures have managed to blur the line between work and fun.

5. Employees fight for the company.

Most companies have some sort of mission, goal, or company philosophy. What happens at a lot of traditional minded companies is that the CEO and company spokespeople push the mission, but the lower level employees couldn’t care less about it.

Heck, most of the employees probably don’t even know what the mission is at all. But employees at forward thinking businesses feel like they are a real part of the company and work harder to make it a success.

6. Your company fights for employees.

At the same time, the company is willing to go to bat for their employees.

Whether it’s helping someone get through school, making it easy for parents to tend to their kids when necessary, or other gestures that aren’t necessarily required but are very valued, it shows that the company cares about, and believes in their team, and that’s what people want to be a part of.

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7. Nobody’s walking on eggshells.

There’s nothing worse than feeling uncomfortable at work. You don’t want to say the wrong thing to one of the big wigs, or you feel you have to hold your tongue in certain situations.

Not only is that type of workplace cold and uninviting, but it also leads to a lot of missed opportunities because people are afraid to voice their opinions.

8. Innovation is a priority.

If your company has been doing everything the same way for fifty years with no signs of changing, then your friends probably aren’t too jealous of the culture at your workplace.

Rules are great and can add some structure, but there should always be room for new ideas and change.

With a lot of newer companies, innovation is being made a top priority. If you think of a better way of doing things, you’re able to voice it and actually be rewarded for pushing the envelope.

9. Your colleagues are happy.

Take a look around your office. Does everyone have a look of gloom and despair on their face? Is the overall team morale just kind of “meh?” In a strong workplace, you’ll notice that people are smiling and seem excited and happy.

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10. The workplace is fun and stimulating.

I’m not sure what it was about creating offices and workplaces in the 90’s, 80’s and years prior, but a lot of them feel dark and dreary. Thankfully, more and more companies are realizing the effect that the environment has on employee satisfaction.

Twenty years ago, the thought of having an entire game room in the office would have sounded crazy. But today, I’m happy to see that it’s becoming more of the norm.

There’s no way to avoid the fact that the way workplaces are run is changing. Companies that are stuck in the past and placing the satisfaction of stockholders above the satisfaction of employees are going to be in for a rude awakening when they realize the top candidates don’t want to work for them.

It’s an exciting time for businesses, and if you don’t feel excited and energized to go to work, then hopefully this article will somehow find it’s way to your boss.

Featured photo credit: CQuadratNet via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on February 11, 2021

10 Secrets of Making Every Presentation Fun, Engaging, and Enjoyable

10 Secrets of Making Every Presentation Fun, Engaging, and Enjoyable

Not a lot of people are good at public speaking. You could even say that virtually everyone needs to get some practice, and preferably good guidance, before they can learn to stay calm when facing a room full of people. Having all eyes on you is an uncomfortable experience and it takes time to get used to. However, even if you can manage to control your stage fright and stay focused, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your presentation won’t put people to sleep. This is usually the case with long presentations on a very dull subject, with the presenter speaking in a monotone voice and dimming the lights to play a PowerPoint presentation.

You have to work hard to develop the right skills

If you want to be remembered and actually get people engaged, you need to make your presentation fun and enjoyable, without coming off as corny or desperate to please. I know, it doesn’t sound that easy at all! A good presentation during a promotional event or given to an important client can be a game changer for your business, so it is easy to get stressed out and fail to perform all that well. Luckily, giving an interesting lecture is something that can be practiced and perfected. There is plenty of advice out there on the topic, but let’s look at the most important aspects of giving a memorable and fun presentation.

1. Make your presentation short and sweet

With very long, meandering speeches you tend to lose the audience pretty early on, and from then on out it’s just a test of endurance for the few bravest listeners. Not only will people’s attention start to drop rapidly after sitting and listening to you talk for 30 minutes, but you also risk watering down your core ideas and leaving your audience with little in the way of key phrases and important bits of information to take away from the whole ordeal. Famous speakers throughout history have known the importance of condensing the information by using well thought out sentences and short phrases loaded with meaning.

JFK’s famous: ”It’s not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country,” expresses so much in very few words and gets the audience thinking. Ancient Spartans, for example were famous for their quick, dry wit, often demolishing their opponent’s argument with a single word or phrase. You’ll want to channel that ancient spirit and be as concise as possible when preparing your presentation.

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2. Open up with a good ice breaker

At the beginning, you are new to the audience. There is no rapport, no trust and the atmosphere is fairly neutral. Even if some of the people there know you personally, the concept of you as an authority on a particular matter giving a speech will be foreign to them. The best way to encourage a warm and friendly atmosphere is to get some kind of emotional response out of the audience right at the beginning. It doesn’t matter what emotion it is, you just need to connect with them on a more personal level. It can be shock, curiosity, laughter, knowing smirks, nervousness – whatever gets them out of that initial feeling of indifference. There are different kinds of effective ice-breakers, but generally speaking, the most successful ones utilize one of these tactics:

  • Joking
  • Tugging on their heart strings
  • Dropping a bombastic statement
  • Telling an interesting and relevant anecdote
  • Using a metaphor or drawing comparisons

You can make a small, self-deprecating comment, stir the presentation one way and then suddenly surprise the audience, use sarcasm, open up with a short childhood story that taught you a lesson, quote a famous person and elaborate on it from personal experience, use an inspirational anecdote or hit them with a bit of nostalgia. Just remember to keep it short and move on once you’ve gotten a reaction.

3. Keep things simple and to the point

Once you’re done warming up the crowd you can ease them into the core concepts and important ideas that you will be presenting. Keep the same presentation style thoughout. If you’ve started off a bit ironic, using dry wit, you can’t just jump into a boring monologue. If you’ve started off with a bang, telling a couple of great little jokes and getting the crowd riled up, you have to keep them happy by throwing in little jokes here and there and being generally positive and energetic during the presentation. You need a certain structure that you won’t deviate too far from at any point. A good game plan consists of several important points that need to be addressed efficiently. This means moving on from one point to another in a logical manner, coming to a sound conclusion and making sure to accentuate the key information.

4. Use a healthy dose of humor

Some of the best speeches and presentations in the world, which have been heard and viewed by millions, all feature plenty of humor. No matter the subject, a great speaker will use natural charisma, humor and beautiful language to convey their points and get the crowd excited about what they are saying. A great example of building rapport with the audience through the use of humor is Barrack Obama talking about the government building Iron Man.

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It is silly and fun, and absolutely not something that you would expect from a man in a position of power speaking in such a serious setting – and it’s exactly why it works. The more serious the situation and the bigger the accent on proper social behavior, the harder your jokes will hit.

5. Try to tell a story instead of ranting

Some people can do all of the above things right and still manage to turn their short and fun little presentation into a chaotic mess of information. You don’t want your speech to look like you just threw a bunch of information in a blender in no particular order. To avoid rambling, create a strong structure. Start with the ice breaker, introduce the core concepts and your goals briefly, elaborate on the various points in a bit more detail, draw logical conclusions and leave your audience with a clear takeaway message. You want to flow naturally from one part to the next like you are telling a big story chapter by chapter.

6. Practice your delivery

Standing in front of the mirror and practicing a speech or presentation is a technique as old as mirrors – well, come to think of it, as old as human speech, since you can see yourself reflected in any clear and calm body of water – and that means that it is tried and true. The theory is incredibly simple, yet the real problem is actually putting in the effort day in and day out. Work on your posture, your tone of voice, accent, pauses between sentences and facial expressions. The most important thing is to talk slowly and loudly enough to be heard and understood clearly. Many famous speakers, such as Demosthenes and King George VI, overcame speech impediments through hard work.

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7. Move around and use your hands

Although you won’t instill confidence in your project if you are very jittery, moving around erratically, not knowing what to do with your hands and making fast movements, standing dead still can be just as bad. You shouldn’t be afraid to use your arms and hands when talking as it makes you seem more passionate and confident. The same goes for moving around and taking up some space. However, try to make slower, calculated and deliberate movements. You want your movements to seem powerful, yet effortless. You can achieve this through practice.

8. Engage the audience by making them relate

Sometimes you will lose the audience somewhat in techno-babble, numbers, graphs and abstract ideas. At that point it is important to reel them back in using some good, old-fashioned storytelling. Make comparisons to events from everyday life that most people are more than familiar with. By making things look simple, not only will you help your audience get a better understanding of the subject by enabling them to visualize the information more clearly, you will also draw a connection between you. After all, you are all just regular people with similar experience, you just happen to be performing different roles at the moment.

9. Use funny images in your slides

Although slides are not really necessary at all times, if you do need them to make your point and present your information more effectively, it’s best to liven them up. They say that facts aren’t always black and white, and your presentation should reflect this. Add a bit of color, make the information stand out and use an interesting animation to switch from slide to slide. You can use the slides to add some more humor, both in terms of the text and the images. An image that is used to elicit a positive response needs to be funny within the context of what you are discussing. For example, if you are discussing the topic of authority, an image of Eric Cartman from South Park in a police uniform, demanding that you respect his “authoritah,” is a nice way to have a bit of fun and lighten things up.

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10. End on a more serious note

When all is said and done you will want the audience to remember the core concepts and keep thinking about what you have said after the presentation is over. This is why you should let things naturally calm down and end with an important idea, quote or even a question. Plant a seed in their mind and make them think. Let us turn to Patrick Henry for a great way to end a speech: “Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death.”

As you can see, there is quite a bit to learn when it comes to giving a good presentation, one that is both memorable and fun. Be sure to work on your skills tirelessly and follow in the footsteps of great orators.

Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

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