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Thread: Office activities?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Office activities?

    For those of you that are still cubicle monkeys or loan drones (like myself) what do you and/or your coworkers do to make the place more tolerable?

    At my work we do a number of things:
    -On breaks we put together huge jigsaw puzzles (up to 2,000 pieces ones)
    -We have "Purple Shirt Thursday," which is a tradition I started because as a minimalist I have few shirts and always wear one on Thursday. Someone noticed this and said: "Is it purple shirt Thursday?" I said: "Yes!" Then others started doing it. Now every Thursday most people wear a purple shirt (or tie or pants).
    -Cookie Monday: A colleague decided that once a season everyone should bring in cookies, preferably homemade. This is held on a Monday to bright the gloomiest of workdays. This has morphed into Pie Monday and Muffin Monday too. On the first Cookie Monday the originator of the ate 14 full size cookies!
    -Goofy Shirt Happy Hour: A colleague came up with this idea and I organized it. We're going to have happy hour wearing our most outlandish shirts. For instance, a colleague has a bobblehead shirt where his head is the bobblehead. Another coworker has a heavy metal T-shirt where a devilish goat is playing guitar in hell. They will wear these shirts.
    -Rubber band wars: We sling rubber bands at people, down hallways, and over cubicle walls
    -Impromptu dancing: We listen to music while we work on a weekly group project. One coworker does the moon walk, another does the freaky-deek, I do the two-step, etc. It is total silly stuff.
    -Thanksgiving: We have a potluck meal with our "work family."
    -Coffee runs: Every day we'll walk to a nearby cafe so people can get coffee. This becomes a consistent way to learn about what people did the previous weekend or what they plan to do the upcoming weekend.
    -Taste Tests: We bring in all sorts of foods (cricket energy bars, ice cremes, pumpkin rolls, exotic fruits, etc.) for taste tests


    What do you all do? Any ideas you have? Any ideas you like?
    ďI came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

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    Senior Member herbgeek's Avatar
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    Back when I went into an office, I used to have a weekly tea party for my staff with tea and treats in the software lab, complete with tablecloth and everything. For other meetings, sometimes it was food musical chairs- make just enough baked goods minus one so that the last person arriving to the meeting doesn't get one (this was with a chronically late staff, amazing how quickly this turned around). When I was in software testing, we had a set of flying bugs , kind of like oversized rubber bands that we'd shoot around (get it, testing/bugs???). We also had a big pool noodle that was put in the cube of anyone who broke the software build- it was so tall it drew attention. We dressed up for Halloween. Had Secret Santa at Christmas. We used to thematically decorate my peer manager's office when he was on vacation in politically incorrect ways (this was the late 90s). One year we did up his cube with Nascar posters, a gun rack, red flannel jacket and put his chair up on blocks. Another year we filled the cube completely with balloons and shrink wrapped the door.

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    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by herbgeek View Post
    Back when I went into an office, I used to have a weekly tea party for my staff with tea and treats in the software lab, complete with tablecloth and everything. For other meetings, sometimes it was food musical chairs- make just enough baked goods minus one so that the last person arriving to the meeting doesn't get one (this was with a chronically late staff, amazing how quickly this turned around). When I was in software testing, we had a set of flying bugs , kind of like oversized rubber bands that we'd shoot around (get it, testing/bugs???). We also had a big pool noodle that was put in the cube of anyone who broke the software build- it was so tall it drew attention. We dressed up for Halloween. Had Secret Santa at Christmas. We used to thematically decorate my peer manager's office when he was on vacation in politically incorrect ways (this was the late 90s). One year we did up his cube with Nascar posters, a gun rack, red flannel jacket and put his chair up on blocks. Another year we filled the cube completely with balloons and shrink wrapped the door.
    Fun stuff! Great ideas. I especially like the idea of filling an office with balloons. haha
    ďI came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

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    Having time for all this amazes me!

    I am one of 3 managers for a combined total of about 450 direct reports. We managed to have a bosses day lunch together this week. But most of the time we divide and conquer, representing each other at meetings cause we are double and triple booked on s daily basis.

    But the camaraderie gained by the ideas in this thread is awesome. Keep it up!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tammy View Post
    Having time for all this amazes me!
    I doubt most of this takes much work time (although if you are making cookies or something that certainly takes non-work time), and coffee is provided where I work - so that noone has any excuse to leave, and I've seldom worked anywhere with group projects. But yea under a reign of terror with time (and everything else at my job), so I mostly just work (uh it's salaried work no breaks are required), and can't really function in the last hour or so anyway because I'm entirely burned out. I don't even test my work as I've realized that seems mostly unwanted and considered as wasting time, so unless I can somehow sneak testing in to a little spare time (and I've done this - heck I've probably given up lunch breaks) I let it go. Because considering I get accused of doing nothing, when there is no basis of truth to it, but I have come to see truth matters as little there as in the Trump white house ...

    People do the usual stuff they socialize and go out, but considering I am under particularly strict management and don't want to weigh 200 pounds which is what I figure going out to lunch would lead to (so I exaggerate some as I don't weight anywhere near that but ..), I save my restaurant meals for some of the times with my bf (I do get tired of cooking for others etc.) and try to limit them ... I just work, that is all, I eat the salad I made for lunch daily.
    Last edited by ApatheticNoMore; 10-18-17 at 11:02am.
    If you want something to get done, ask a busy person. If you want them to have a nervous breakdown that is.

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    Senior Member herbgeek's Avatar
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    Having time for all this amazes me!
    Most of this was in the 90's, early 00's. Ain't nobody got time for shenanigans now.

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    Most of this was in the 90's, early 00's. Ain't nobody got time for shenanigans now.
    there does seem to have been a real shift since 2008, in the sheer brutality of the work experience. Me and my bf have both seen it. I just hope everywhere isn't as bad.
    If you want something to get done, ask a busy person. If you want them to have a nervous breakdown that is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ApatheticNoMore View Post
    there does seem to have been a real shift since 2008, in the sheer brutality of the work experience. Me and my bf have both seen it. I just hope everywhere isn't as bad.
    I agree, and I have shared that often. Feels more like office space and you keep on passing the cake and never get a piece.

    I play with children professionally so I don't see my peers that often (we each have different schools). When we go to the main office for meetings mostly we just want to get things done but sometimes there is fun stuff. The year for the new Star Wars movies we had some trivia contests and events.

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    Letís see, Thursday was pizza lunch, Friday I brought the chicks in with me, yesterday was Hawaiian day, today was the 80ís and donuts for jenniferís Birthday, tomorrow is mismatch day, and Friday is Green day (which cracks me up because I read it as the band). The friendly frog monster has been roaming the halls, and someone set up a giant marble works in the lobby.

    but I play with children professionally too.

    oh! I almost forgot the snowman insurrection, but thatís just between me and the kids.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Simplemind's Avatar
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    We were never allowed to make it more tolerable in any way. There were no windows and it had more mismatched office furniture than not. We were not allowed to decorate and with the exception of supervisors nobody had their own desk and had to switch positions every four hours so there was no personal items on desks that didn't move with you. Drab and boring and soul sucking for my inner creative self.
    We did potlucks on occasion but food was mostly eaten at the desks which was frowned upon. So another shift supervisor and I would either treat our shift for pizza before the shift started or I would have them over for a brunch. It was best to spend time together outside of the office environment. Then the shifts who didn't get taken out got ticked off about it. Sigh................... no good deed went unpunished.

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