The Role of Play in Shaping Workplace Culture with Kristi Herold
Why do some teams thrive while others struggle?
According to recent studies, one factor that separates the successful from the struggling is their ability to bring playfulness into their daily interactions at work.
I talk about it often: there is a serious business case for fun at work.
But what does it mean to “play” at work, and how can it benefit you and your team at work?
To answer this question, it’s helpful to understand the different types of play:
There’s exploratory play, where we try new things and learn from our experiences.
There’s social play, where we engage with others and develop our interpersonal skills.
And there’s imaginative play, where we tap into our creativity and let our minds wander.
Each type of play has its unique benefits. Exploratory play fosters curiosity and problem-solving skills, social play enhances communication and teamwork, and imaginative play boosts innovation and adaptability. By incorporating play into our daily lives, we can develop a well-rounded set of skills that can benefit us in any career.
But play deprivation is a growing trend in today’s society. We’re pressured to prioritize career success over leisure time, and our screen time is skyrocketing. The consequences of play deprivation are vast, including increased stress, anxiety, and burnout.
So how can we combat play deprivation at work and incorporate more play in the way we collaborate.
This is what my guest, Kristi Herold, and I explore in this interview.
Kirsti is the founder and CEO of JAM, a multi-million dollar global business that has connected millions of people through play since its inception – one of the world’s largest adult recreational sports leagues. Her vision is to get 1 million people playing annually.
In her latest book It Pays To Play, Kristi reassures us that the power of play is not to be underestimated.
Here are the episode’s highlights:
- Discover why play is a crucial part of human development and how it benefits socialization, problem-solving, and creativity.
- Find out how adults can benefit from incorporating play into their personal and professional lives.
- Uncover how organizations can increase creativity, productivity, and job satisfaction by incorporating play in their work environment.
- Explore the different activities that can be used to achieve the benefits of play.
- Learn about the powerful role that play can have on mental health, including reducing stress and anxiety, and increasing happiness and resilience.
- Understand why play is not a luxury, but a fundamental human need that should be valued and promoted at work.
Listen to the interview in the player below or on iTunes. If you like what you hear, please leave a review, and it may be featured on a future episode.
More about Kristi Herold
Kristi Herold helps people connect through play and helps companies unlock profit through play.
Her vision is to get 1 million people playing annually.
Kristi is the founder and CEO of JAM a multi-million dollar global business that has connected millions of people through play since its inception – one of the largest adult recreational sports leagues in the world.
When the pandemic shut down recreational sports, and employees that used to huddle around a watercooler and talk at lunch were all working from home, Kristi led her team to pivot the business, helping corporations improve their culture through fun and playful corporate events like trivia evenings and escape rooms, all delivered virtually initially, but now offering hybrid and in-person solutions as well. The JAM team has produced and delivered over 3500 playful corporate events, in over 30 countries since the summer of 2020.
Kristi consults and speaks on how to move a culture from surviving to thriving and she recently authored the best-selling book “It Pays to PLAY – How Play Improves Business Culture”.
In 2020, Kristi was named to the esteemed “Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women”, and was a top 3 finalist in the Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards.
JAM was awarded “Canada’s Most Admired Culture Award “ in 2022, has been certified as a “Great Places to Work – Canada” and named to the “Best Remote Startups to work for”.
Kristi was awarded the Governor General’s “Queen’s Diamond Jubilee” award in 2009, in recognition of her contribution and giving back to the community.
Books mentioned in this episode
[Special Offer] – A free copy of Kristi’s 20-page book, It Pays To Play, filled with tactical ideas on how to integrate play into the workplace, as well as a 25% offering for one of their JAM virtual events.
Vivid Vision by Cameron Herold.
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni.
People mentioned in this episode
Organizations mentioned in this episode
CultureBrained® Community – a one-of-a-kind virtual community for Heads of Culture, founders, and leaders who want to up their culture game.
Discover Your Personal Values.
[Special Offer] – A free copy of Kristi’s 20-page book, filled with tactical ideas on how to integrate play into the workplace, as well as a 25% offering for one of their JAM virtual events.
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