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Are we having fun yet?

Command control management is out. Top-down, authoritarian bosses have — or should have — gone by the wayside. What's new is FUN! That's right, fun. One of your top priorities of each and every day is to ensure that your team is having fun.

Why? Because Generation Y'ers say so, that's why. A fun work environment topped the list in a recent survey. Yep, fun beat out growth opportunities, salary & benefits, and even flexible work hours.

So how much fun is enough fun?

Ask this simple question:

Are your employees having as much fun as your guests?

If your answer is yes, congratulations. You're one of the few operators out there who can honestly say so. If you're not sure, or if there's room for more fun in your organization, keep reading. There are lots of ways you can incorporate fun into your workplace:

Make training fun

How you approach your employee training program can make a powerful first impression. Instead of handing them boring manuals, mix it up a bit. Some manual training is OK, but add some interactive exercises and role plays, use props, and show videos.

Make communication fun

Get to know your employees, and their culture. What movies are currently popular? What music do they listen to? What does the media say these kids are into? You might feel a little younger and hipper in the process, but don't get carried away! Spend time, even if just 30 seconds a day, talking to each employee about their personal life. And keep everyone in the loop with an upbeat and jazzy employee newsletter .

Make guest interactions fun

Whether you're white tablecloth, quick service, healthcare or B&I, employees should be able to view their guest interactions as fun, or at least pleasant. Serving guests shouldn't be a burden. Adopting the right attitude can make a big difference. Ask your employees what gets in the way of enjoying the job. What could you change to make coming to work a pleasant experience. I guarantee your guests will take notice. They'll want to come back more frequently, spend more and tip more... a win - win situation.

Have fun with fun

When it's time to let your hair down, to whoop it up a bit, do it in style. What do your employees think is fun? Theme parties? Contests? Field trips? Incentives? There are many ways to have fun. The trick is to find fun that is appropriate and can be enjoyed by all. Not sure? Ask your team members — front and back of the house.

So are you having fun yet?

I dare you to find out.

Download our Fun-O-Meter and let your employees tell you if they are. Woo Hoo!

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