I like to read. It expands your mind, teaches new ideas, and is one of the most succinct and structured ways for people to express their thoughts. However not all books are created equal and there are only a handful of books on humor that I think are worth their cost (both in terms of price and time spent reading):
501 Ways to Use Humor
Ok, so maybe it’s uncouth of me to recommend my own book (let alone list it first), but I truly believe the book is a great way to get started with humor in the workplace. I took what I’ve learned from reading countless humor and business books and compiled into one resource that will get you started using humor in the workplace.
In the book you’ll find a list of 501 ways to use humor to beat stress, increase productivity, and have fun at work.
The Levity Effect
Authors Adrian Gostick and Scott Christopher take a research-driven approach to preaching the values of humor in the workplace. The book is chock-full of real-life examples of how levity has helped improve business in real-life companies.
From the authors: “With interviews, exercises, and case studies, the book reveals how humor in the workplace will help you communicate messages, build camaraderie, and encourage creativity for a better workplace and bigger profits.”
While this book isn’t specific to humor in the workplace, it’s such a powerful read on the applications of improv to life that it deserves mention on the list. In the book, Patricia Ryan Madson shares concepts from improvisation that can help you deal with everyday life, both at work and at home.
From the cover: “Patricia Madson distills thirty years of experience into thirteen simple strategies, including “Say Yes,” “Start Anywhere,” “Face the Facts,” and “Make Mistakes, Please,” helping readers to loosen up, think on their feet, and take on everything life has to offer with skill, chutzpah, and a sense of humor.”
The Personal MBA isn’t a humor book at all, but it is one of the best business books you’ll ever read. Why? Because author Josh Kaufman took what he’s learned from reading hundreds of the most esteemed business books and distilled their key concepts down into digestible tidbits of knowledge. If you understand business as well as Josh does, finding ways to incorporate humor will be easy.
From Seth Godin: “File this book under NO EXCUSES. After you’ve read it, you won’t be open to people telling you that you’re not smart enough, not insightful enough, or not learned enough to do work that matters. Josh takes you on a worthwhile tour of the key ideas in business.”
Yes, you read that correctly. One of my recommended reading books is fiction graphic novel… And yet I stand by the recommendation. While the story involves fictional elements like superheros, time travel, and far too many people wearing spandex, it also teaches some incredibly powerful lessons.
In fact, I’ve previously written about 12 Life Lessons Learned from The Watchmen. So stop stalling and go read it already.
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