Last week, I wrote about office culture and how having some fun at the office can be good for office morale. I don’t mean to imply that I have all the answers when it comes to managing and motivating staff, because I’ve had plenty of ideas not work as well as I had hoped, but I keep trying and I think my team realizes that.
This week, I’ll pass along a project we are doing that is going over very well and it is not very expensive. It is definitely putting a smile of the faces of our employees every day and that alone makes it a huge success!
Art Work that Evokes Emotion
Our latest project (my wife gets the credit for the idea) is to ask our staff members to give us photos of their pets so we can have them printed and laminated onto wood plaques. We arranged the photos like art work on a wall in our staff break room.
We recently remodeled our staff lounge (break room), which also doubles as a conference room and kitchen. We got all new furniture, cozy rugs, refrigerator, microwaves and a hot beverage dispenser. The room has a large flat panel TV that gets cable and also provides an audiovisual display for staff meetings. There was a large wall that needed some new art and the pet pic concept was born.
There are many ways to frame photos, but we opted for 8- x 10-inch wooden plaques that are available in the photo department at your local drug store chain and I’m sure many other sources. We paid about $12 per photo plaque. We have some photos in landscape mode and some in portrait mode, and we arranged them in a creative way. We asked the staff to supply us with the pictures in a JPG file and we used photo editing software to type the name of the pet in large print across the bottom.
We have many adorable pictures of cats and dogs in various unusual poses and in some cases, with clothing on. We also have fish, birds and even a deer, which is not really a pet but we let it qualify. The staff are having a lot of fun sharing their beloved pets with their coworkers and guests.
I know some doctors have real live pets in the office and they report that patients love it, but I was not ready for that much love in the workplace! The pictures will have to do. One of our team members said if she is having a bad day she just comes into the lounge and sees the picture of her dog and she feels better!