All too often, many of us think of work as drudgery; slogging toil. Imagine instead what our organizations – indeed our communities and our country – would be like if instead we were able to celebrate the act of working together. Imagine for just a moment what it would be like if we remembered to take shared pleasure in our day-to-day industriousness.
To hear what joyful industry might sound like, lend your ears to this work song made by postal workers cancelling stamps at the University of Ghana Post Office, circa 1975. Never before have I wanted a post office job, but this song makes me want to rush out to apply! Not because correspondence thrills me, but because this workplace (as captured by ethnomusicologist James Koetting) sounds FUN.
People want to be where the WORK IS FUN. The more your organization can make the work of changing the work FUN, the more people you will attract to your cause. What joy do you take in the work your team is doing together? Do your colleagues know it? Do your volunteers feel it? Do you celebrate the harmonies and the drum solos alike?
Maybe not all the time and maybe not every day, but when it clicks, work is a thing of beauty. The things we can do together are a delight. (And let me say here for the record that I am so grateful for – and take real delight in – the work that the LightBox Collaborative team does together each day.)
I wish you all a day of joyful industry in your effort to make your communities better – today and every day.