Change is fun and Swedes have a sense of humour.

http://www.thefuntheory.com/
This VW initiative is dedicated to the thought that fun is the easiest way to change people’s behaviour for the better.  There is something in here for everyone, I can’t wait to see the ultimate winner in the fun theory award.

I love the piano staircase example. It got me thinking of less effective corporate communications deployed in trying to drive behaviour change. Here goes..

“As part of our corporate social responsibility we continuously review our operations to ensure the best service for our customers and the communities we serve. A recent increase in slips, trips and falls on our escalators has lead us to review pedestrian access to our subways. As a result, we have decided to decommission all escalators in our subways. By doing so we will reduce our operating costs, make a safer environment for our customers and reduce our carbon footprint. Management apologise for any inconvenience caused and we appreciate your help in cutting costs and saving the planet”

Result:
Disgruntled customers, complaints, negative press, loss of trust and corporate reputation.

Sound familiar?

For me this proves that engagement is far more effective when you tap into emotional rather than rational drivers.

2 Comments

  1. Annette Allen says:

    Saw this several months ago, Sean, and it’s just great! I wonder why we leave our sense of humour behind when we go to work. Actually, it’s mostly senior managers who do so; they think work has to be ‘serious’ each and every day. I asked one director whom I interviewed as part of a change programme, whether he saw his role as rewarding or fun? He told me that he never considers work fun. That was a sad moment – how did he celebrate success with his team?

    You know, emotional = how we used to feel as children. That sense of wonder, curiosity, friendship for its own sake, and discoveries every day. It’s pretty awesome.

    But as communicators we do get to share the great stories as well as encourage managers to be a little less serious about how they say things = clearer language and benefits that everyone can relate to. Most people these days feel like they’re in a strait jacket; we need to lighten up a little!

  2. I couldn’t agree more Annette

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