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Published on : Feb 10, 2014
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Slide 1 - 1 Humor in Business by Don L. F. Nilsen and Alleen Pace Nilsen
Slide 2 - Creative Advertising 2
Slide 3 - More Creative Advertising 3
Slide 4 - Two Business Models: 4
Slide 5 - Spaghetti Factory & Kleenex: Explain! 5
Slide 6 - Business Symbolism 6
Slide 7 - Bad Jobs! 7
Slide 8 - BUSINESSES ARE NOW LOOKING FOR NEW APPROACHES An Office at Google Humor consultant John Morreall advises businesses on how to make employees “like” to come to work. It is fine to decorate an office or pin up cartoons, but really, it i much more complex than that. They find ways to make their employees WANT to come to work. Offices should be fun to look at and to work in. But there’s more to it than that. 8
Slide 9 - Businesses which encourage humor also: Take initiative and risks. Do not worry about making mistakes. Spend energy on solutions. Shoot for total quality. Focus on opportunities. Do not worry about breaking things. Try easier, not harder. Stay calm. Take responsibility. Experiment. Smile. Have fun. 9
Slide 10 - 10 To Accomplish These Goals, Companies: Flatten the organization by reducing levels of management. Allow workers more discretion in making decisions. Foster creative thinking. Accept employee attitudes, emotions, and suggestions. Encourage teamwork and collaboration.
Slide 11 - Administrators’ Views of Humor-in-Business : A sense of humor makes businesses more creative, less rigid, and more willing to consider and embrace new ideas and methods. In a different survey of 737 CEO’s, 98% said that humor was important in the conduct of business. They therefore gave preference to people with a sense of humor. Soft skills are better predictors of success in management than are hard skills. 11
Slide 12 - More Support for Humor The director of human resources at Sun Microsystems watches for how long it takes an interviewee to laugh or to find something funny She says that humor is very important in their corporate futures. One business created a “Grouch Patrol.” Whenever they see someone with a sour face, they respond by making a bat face. This involves pushing the tip of their noses up, flicking their tongues in and out, and making a high-pitched “Eeeee” sound. 12
Slide 13 - When Humor “Bubbles-Up” from Employees, There Will of Course Be Lots of Variety. Practical jokes we’ve recently heard: Putting foam packing bubbles in the cubicles of colleagues who are absent. A boss going on a three-week trip, and coming back to find real sod rolled out in his office just to prove that “grass does grow under your feet.” A door-decorating contest on the cruise ship taking 12 of their outstanding employees to Mexico, in which winners had photos of their faces superimposed on pictures of jungle animals. Their slogan was “Where the Wild Things Are.” 13
Slide 14 - At our local BEADS GALORE store an employee made this sign for the window. “UNATTENDED CHILDREN WILL BE GIVEN TO THE GOBLIN KING” APPARENTLY, SHE WAS TIRED OF REARRANGING THE DISPLAYS. 14
Slide 15 - 15 Other Examples of Workplace Humor A debt collector sent out a letter reading, “We appreciate your business, but, please, give us a break. Your account is overdue 10 months. That means we’ve carried you longer than your mother did.” A business manager, who made a really bad mistake, wore a T-shirt with a large red bulls-eye on it when he went to a meeting about the problem. A large IBM sales team improved their record 30% when they formed a pick-up orchestra and recorded their sales in fun ways, e.g. by blowing a horn, smashing a gong.
Slide 16 - More Examples Esther Blumenfield and Lynne Alpern told about how four women conspired to get even with a male co-worker. At meetings, he would routinely drop his pencil on the floor so that he could bend down under the table and look up their skirts. One day before a scheduled meeting, they used a magic marker to print on their kneecaps: H I (space) R A L P H. The CEO of a large Canadian bank appears in a monthly corporate video shown to all employees to discuss recent issues and plans. A hand puppet appears and begins poking fun and asking him embarrassing questions about recent problems. 16
Slide 17 - Jimmy John’s Sandwich Shops are successful because of their quirky humor. 17
Slide 18 - Cartoonist Scott Adams draws “Dilbert” cartoons which explore these business-related themes: Downsizing Heavy work loads Micromanagement Humiliatingly small cubicles Accelerating pace of change Corporate gobbledygook Management fads Cruel bosses Annoying colleagues Red tape. 18
Slide 19 - Adams encourages readers to send in their true stories. They are often published on the Business pages of newspapers. A management expert at Apple Computer said, “There are only two kinds of companies, those that recognize that they’re just like Dilbert, and those that don’t know it yet.” 19
Slide 20 - Once employees incorporate humor in their daily lives, it seems natural to extend humor to their customers and potential customers. Volkswagen introduced the VW Rabbit into the U.S. with a 10-second commercial showing two rabbits looking into the camera. One is saying, “In 1956 there were only two VWs in America. . .” At a California traffic school named Lettuce Amuse U, the teachers are comedians. They use humor to relax students. One teacher explains that an extra reason for keeping your baby safe in a backward-facing car seat is “If you get rear-ended, you’ve got a witness.” 20
Slide 21 - Before a three-day-weekend, the State Highway Department uses humor by putting lighted warnings on major highways: 21
Slide 22 - The Arizona Republic gives away umbrellas covered with reprints of their comic strips.Our foot doctor incorporates the anti-fungus toenail gang to tell us to turn off our cell phones. 22
Slide 23 - Connections between Humor and Advertising They both require brevity. They open people’s minds to enable them to have a new viewpoint. People get involved in processing the message, and therefore remember it longer. 23
Slide 24 - Match the Slogans with the Products The beer that made Milwaukee famous B. O. Say it with flowers When it rains, it pours Snap, crackle and pop Nature’s spelled backwards Good to the Last Drop Rice Krispies Schlitz Beer Seratan American Florist Assoc. Maxwell Coffee Morton Salt Livebuoy Soap 24
Slide 25 - Creative spelling made these names memorable and helped with trademark protection. Some Early Examples Kwik ReaLemon Reddi-Wip Ry-Krisp Krispies Tastee-Freez Toys “Я” Us U-Haul More Recent Examples Aspercreme Dunkin’ Donuts Haggar Expand-o-matic Kwik Kopy Playskool Sominex Whataburger Wolverine Durashocks 25
Slide 26 - The Staying Power of Brand NamesNineteen of the twenty-two companies that owned the leading American brands in 1925 still own them. Campbells in soup Del Monte in canned fruit Gillette in razors Ivory in soap Kellogg’s in breakfast cereals Kodak in film Nabisco in cookies Sherwin Williams in paint Singer in sewing machines Wrigleys in chewing gum 26
Slide 27 - Why did Band-Aid, Kleenex, Scotch Tape, Thermos, and Zipper become common rather than proper nouns? Think of other examples. These are relatively older products. These are “benchmark” products. But today advertisers work to “protect” their names so that consumers will look exclusively for their products rather than for the imitators. 27
Slide 28 - 28 James Twitchell, used his own kind of humor to criticize America’s market culture. He wrote: “If Greece gave the world philosophy, Britain gave drama, Austria gave music, Germany gave politics, and Italy gave art, then America has recently contributed mass-produced and mass-consumed objects.” He added that our materialism is a kind of spiritualism, but instead of looking at the next life for our rewards, we are looking for “The Nike swoosh, the Polo pony, the Guess? label, and the DKNY logo.”
Slide 29 - Are we influenced by ads? People say that they don’t pay much attention to ads. They just tune them out, believing they have no effect. In Nazi Germany, Joseph Goebbels said that the secret of propaganda is that “those who are to be persuaded should be completely immersed in the ideas of the propaganda, without ever noticing that they are being immersed in it.” This is where humor comes in. If we are amused or laughing at a commercial or a program, our defenses are down and we are more likely to want to buy whatever is being shown. 29
Slide 30 - Products are our friends. Alcoholics joke that Jack Daniels is their constant lover, while smokers feel that cigarettes are their friends. People are twice seduced, first by the ads and then by the substances. “Infiniti is an automobile; Hydra Zen is a moisturizer, and Jesus is a brand of jeans.” 30
Slide 31 - Even ten-year-olds are being turned into COVER GIRLS. Each girl at this weekend celebration in Louisville brought her “American Girl” doll. All the girls were photographed and put onto a “fake” cover of a local magazine. What parent could resist buying it? 31
Slide 32 - Commercialization teaches people to be shoppers. 32 Women are especially targeted. Why do teenage girls shoplift more often than do teenage boys?
Slide 33 - 33 Which of the following statements are gender marked? A woman’s place is in the mall. But I can’t be overdrawn! I still have some checks. He who dies with the most toys wins. I’m spending my grandchildren’s inheritance. Nouveau riche is better than no riche at all. People who say money can’t buy happiness, don’t know where to shop. Shop ‘til you drop. When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.
Slide 34 - 34 We will conclude with miscellaneous “Laws of Business” developed over the years: MURPHY’S LAW: “If anything can go wrong, it will,” extended to “When left to themselves, things always go from bad to worse,” and “If anything can go wrong, it will, and even if it can’t it might.” O’TOOLE’S LAW: Murphy was an optimist. DAMON RUNYAN’S LAW: In all human affairs, the odds are always six to five against.
Slide 35 - MORE LAWS . . . THE PETER PRINCIPLE: Each employee tends to rise to their level of incompetence. PETER’S COROLLARY PRINCIPLE: When people are doing well they will be promoted, which means that everyone not upwardly mobile is incompetent. MARSHALL’S GENERALIZED ICEBERG THEOREM: Seven-eights of everything cannot be seen. PAUL HERBIG’S PRINCIPLE OF BUREAUCRATIC TINKERTOYS: If it can be understood, it’s not yet finished. 35
Slide 36 - 36 THE FINAL RULES OF BUSINESS RULE NUMBER 1: The boss is always right. RULE NUMBER 2: If the boss is wrong, see Rule Number 1.
Slide 37 - 37 Business Humor Web Sites CREATIVE HONDA AD: https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/Dxy4n0UT82o?rel=0 DILBERT STREAMING: http://www.youtube.com/user/dilbert THE HAPPINESS MACHINE: http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=lqT_dPApj9U MOTIVATION: PROFIT VS. PURPOSE; LEVELING THE HIERARCHY (e.g. Internet, Wikipedia, Skype, Facebook, Google, Southwest…): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6XAPnuFjJc&feature=relmfu