|Photo/Illustration: M. Wissenz/R. MacIvor|
My father is rolling over in his grave. Just the thought of incorporating play at work would have raised eyebrows in his day. Work was for work. Period. You worked hard all day and then came home, ate dinner, watched the news and then worked at something else.
Incorporating play into the workplace is nothing but the next generation of modern-leadership-zenning-itself-into-their-happy-place gone awry. This is where the brilliant minds who gave us "Jeans Friday" and the casual workplace have lead us.
Excuse the bad play on words, but play at work will never work. First, you have to teach grown-ups what play is again. There would have to be studies commissioned, courses and workshops would have to be offered costing a huge amount of person-hours, not to mention consultants' fees. Then you have to define what types of play are allowable and during what time periods... Plus, if you have a variety of lifestyles, religions, races and ages in your office you have to take into account personal sensitivities, and age-appropriateness. Can you imagine asking an avid animal rights activist to play Pin the Tail on the Donkey? I don't think so.
What are you supposed to tell a client? "Oh, I'm sorry I can't make it at 1 pm on Thursday, that's our Tiddly-Winks time?" Or try asking your next customer to excuse the noise from the Giggle-Belly session next door... again, I don't think so.
Besides, what if you don't want to play some silly game? What if you want to actually work? Increased productivity comes from applying yourself to your job and not from shooting Nerf balls into waste basket hoops. You're supposed to be miserable at work.
I'm with my father on this one. Play is for kids. (If there are no chores to be done. Or homework. Or music lessons...)