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Taking Humour Seriously

Established seller since Seller Inventory IQ Delivered from our UK warehouse in 4 to 14 business days. Seller Inventory APC Items related to Taking Humour Seriously. Taking Humour Seriously. Mr Jerry Palmer ; Jerry Palmer. Publisher: Routledge , Robert Provine, a psychologist from the University of Maryland, found that we actually laugh most when talking to our friends.

Like creativity, humour often works best when it violates what is considered to be the norm.

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As one of the millions of people who work in a global organization, this really struck a chord with me. Yet in all the teams I have worked with, we have always managed to create this common language of silly, sometimes absurd, humour that probably makes no sense outside the office. This is what makes humour one of our most important forms of emotional expression. It lets people know that we like them and understand them, enabling us to build and nurture relationships across hierarchies and even cultural divides.

Taking Humour Seriously by Jerry Palmer

That is why I see it as a workplace essential. Helpfully, science backs me up again here, because numerous studies have shown that, far from wasting time and destroying productivity, humour also makes good business sense. For a start, it encourages us to collaborate , provides motivation and can help prevent burnout. Yet, in our increasingly crisis-driven world, humour can sometimes feel like a distant former acquaintance.

At the same time, social media has given anyone with an internet connection a platform for negative comments and trolling — as well as a visible online history.

We saw one example of the potential consequences of this just the other week when the comedian Kevin Hart stepped down as host of the Oscars , after complaints about some of his previous tweets. One thing is for sure; as organizations find themselves immersed in the global war for talent, the best weapon at their disposal is most likely to be their current workforce.

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This means that issues around employee engagement and collaboration are going to take on even greater significance in the coming years, if companies want to attract and keep the best people. Those who are able to motivate employees to enjoy their time at work will have a greater chance of success — and I believe that humour will be key. And often the funniest thing to say is something that seems completely beyond the appropriate boundaries. Aim to laugh with someone, rather than at them.


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The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum. David Benatar. David Benatar University of Cape Town. Humour is worthy of serious ethical consideration. However, it is often taken far too seriously. In this paper, it is argued that while humour is sometimes unethical, it is wrong much less often than many people think.

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Non-contextual criticisms, which claim that certain kinds of humour are always wrong, are rejected. Contextual criticisms, which take issue with particular instances of humour rather than types of humour, are more promising. However, it is common to overstate the number of contexts in which humour is wrong. Various mistakes of this kind are highlighted and cautioned against. Social Ethics, Misc in Applied Ethics. Edit this record.

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