While my penchant is for systemic change and not quick fixes, occasionally you just need a little somethin’ somethin’ to rally the team and lift their spirits.   Perhaps you’re stuck in a rut or it’s been a rough week – regardless, leverage the power of music, story and humor to add some sparkle to your workplace.

Music is probably the easiest – consider some of these options:

  • A 3-minute de-stress dance fest to music that would jive with your team
  • Create an impromptu conga line throughout the office
  • Sway or rock out to a song everyone can sing to (We are the Champions by Queen is a fun option along with Don’t Stop Believing by Journey or I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor…)
  • Bring in the cupid shuffle for a short jaunt of line-dancing
  • Get CRAZY and have everyone enjoy the goofy lightheartedness of the chicken dance


  • Tell one of your organization’s stories from the canon – how it got started, biggest guffaw, biggest success, most challenging time and how you came through it
  • Have impromptu story time where team members take turns sharing one of the most interesting moments from their life – perhaps most inspiring or most embarrassing
  • If it’s been a rough week – consider a brown bag lunch gathering on Friday and do your own internal version of “The Moth” (themoth.org) – where team members take turns telling 3-5 minute stories from their life/work on a certain topic
  • Literally you can do one of those story games where someone starts off the story and it gets passed around a circle


  • I personally swear by bad clean jokes
  • Send an e-mail with the subject line “When you need a 3-minute amusing brain break” and share a tasteful short video or content that made you laugh out loud – here’s one of my go-to favorites
  • As long as it’s not offensive or snarky, on the fly humor is almost always welcomed – even if it lands flat you made an effort to bring a smile. Of course, be thoughtful of your timing.
  • Play a round of grab the finger or try one of these one-minute games

When we’re feeling “meh” or struggling we’re likely taking ourselves too seriously – music, story and humor help us let loose a little, and reduce tension and stress while increasing connection, creativity and morale.