The right office supplies will change feeling like you have to be at work to feeling like you want to be at work! Check out 23 inexpensive office supplies below that will make work an infinitely more enjoyable experience. Continue reading
10 Ways to Keep Busy at Work When the Internet Goes Down
Sometimes technology can be your friend. Sending emails, visiting websites, searching for something on Google, and being always connected with a smartphone are now a part of our everyday lives. We use technology more than you might think. But... what happens when technology turns against you? What if your internet goes down during the workday and it's essential to your business? You might have some sort of backup system, but... What happens when the backup internet fails or maybe you don't have backup internet. While the hard working IT folks scramble to resolve the issue as fast as they can, what are you to do? We've put together a list of 10 ways to keep busy at work when the internet goes down.
1. Take a break If it's nearing your lunch time or if you haven't taken a 10 minute break in while, this is the perfect opportunity. On your break, you might take a short walk outside, grab a snack, or play a game of monkeys in a barrel.
2. Talk to coworkers Take the opportunity to get away from your desk and talk to someone. Are you at a loss when it comes to small talk? You could talk about the internet going down. If that topic doesn't start an interesting conversation, then you might ponder where the Slingshot Flying Monkey likes to go on vacation.
3. Create a tower of ______ What items can you stack in your workplace? Books are too easy. Can you create a tower with pens and pencils? How about binder clips, magnetic stones, or foam toy cows? Think outside of the box! Get together with teams and turn tower building into a team building and problem solving exercise.
4. Write secret messages to your coworkers Head to the water cooler or the bathroom and stick a note in a very noticeable place. When your coworkers walk away from their desk, leave a note just for them. Your note might be something awesome, an exciting fact, a pending to-do item, or an interesting conversation.
5. Start a battle Start a friendly office battle with foam disc shooters. Surprise your fellow coworkers by sending a few random foam discs over their way. Once they're noticed, had them their own disc shooter and swiftly take action! (Target practice with a foam dart shooter is a great alternative.)
6. Create a putty masterpiece The possibilities are endless with putty and clay. You could mold clay into a miniature version of your favorite animal. Or, gather a few coworkers and make a grand work of putty art on the break room table.
7. Hold a meeting Is everyone too busy to get together for that brainstorming meeting? Well, now everyone has the time. To keep your meetings organized and upbeat, check out our silly pens and meeting toys.
8. Host a wind up toy race Someone in the office is bound to be a wind up toy collector. Ask to borrow their wind ups and have each person pick their favorite to win. We hosted our own wind up toy race, so we can offer a tip or two. If you have a wide selection of wind ups, select the ones that walk or hop in a straight line (test them out first or watch our wind up toy videos). Then, set some ground rules: pick your start and finish lines and decide if participants are allowed to touch and re-wind up their toy again.
Wind Up Chattering Teeth Wind Up Farm Animal Wind Up Wild Animal Wind Up Crab Wind Up Chicken
9. Write or update your to-do list Get out an old fashioned pen and paper and write it down! To help you get organized, grab your favorite notepad. Depending on your style, you might need to get your s**t together, figure out WTF you're doing, or plan out your entire week.
10. Go home If your work depends on the internet and it's going to be down for a significant portion of time, it might be the most practical to send employees home for the day. If you offer employees the ability to work from home, this would be the most practical option. Don't have employees waste time doing nothing--let them have the rest of the day off where they can relax as they please.
A fun work environment doesn't mean it is an unproductive one. We'll show you 6 unique ways to have fun in at work without decreasing productivity. When your employees and coworkers are having fun, they're happier, less stressed, and more likely to be motivated. Let's have fun as we get work done!
1. Take creativity breaks Taking a break can actually boost productivity. If the brain is tried, dull, and unimaginative, it can be difficult to come up with a solution or an idea. Take several mini breaks during the day to allow you (and your employees) to have some fun while you recharge for the next task. Some creative activities include coloring, sculpting putty or clay, assembling tangram puzzles, or dressing up Einstein (yes, an Einstein Dress Up Kit actually exists).
2. Personalize your work space While this seems subtle, a personalized work space can make a huge difference. A personalized work space feels more welcoming and enjoyable than a plain work area. Which sounds more fun out of the following two options? One, a plain white room or two a room filled with color, art, and decorations. Most people would probably choose a work area that's pleasing to the eye. Try a relaxing desktop fountain, colorful (but still practical) office supplies, or appealing sand pictures.
3. Encourage creativity Creativity comes in many different forms. Employees might not think they're creative because they aren't artistic. Being creative in the workplace is more than painting a picture. Encourage others around you to be creative in their thoughts and ideas. Use brainstorming sessions or suggestion boxes to encourage employees to think of unique solutions, interesting products, and innovative improvements. Let employees explore their favorite way of being creative, whether it is through discussion or quiet thought.
4. Bring toys to meetings Having fidget toys or stress balls at a meeting can actually help increase engagement if the toy is subtle and doesn't take the focus away the person speaking. We recommend a Tangle fidget toy, a Koosh ball, or a foam stress toy.
5. Play enjoyable music Music can be very uplifting and make a less than exciting task more uplifting and interesting. If your workplace plays music, allow employees to pick the radio station or pick a song of the day. When playing music, remember to be aware of others. Musical tastes can vary and some people are sensitive to noise. In some cases, you might encourage music players to wear headphones while listening to their favorite songs.
6. Create a game out of work Whether you use certificates, badges, gold stars, workplace bingo, or a point system, turning goals into a game can make things lighthearted and fun. Games can also be very motivating: employees will push to get that goal star or another bingo. Before you call a work game cheesy or childish, remember that gamification is widely popular (you'll find games in more things than you might think) and it is a huge motivating factor. If it's done right, work games can be a fun twist to "just working".
National Boss Day is October 17, 2016
Here's your chance to show your boss or manager how great you think they are and gain brownie points at the same time. This is your time to shine! In order to stand out from the crowd of gift card givers, you've got to think outside the box. You've gotta get them something fun!Continue reading
Tabletop Water Fountains, also known as Desktop Water Fountains or Indoor Tabletop Fountains, bring the feeling of the outdoors to your desk, office, or home. The beautifully designed fountains and the calm, flowing water will create a relaxing atmosphere and help you be at peace. Continue reading
We're all curious about the future. Here at Office Playground we're especially curious about what we can expect our offices to look like. How will rapid technological advancement shape the way we work? Continue reading
Interview with the Slingshot Flying Monkey
We sat down with Office Playground's favorite monkey, Mr. Slingshot Flying, to learn more about how he feels about fame, fun, and living the good life. We translated the Slingshot Flying Monkey's responses from his native monkey language since he doesn't speak English very well. Let's start with the basics:
How long have you been with Office Playground?
I've been around for many years and I love it! You may have seen me around Office Playground as early as 2006.
Congratulations! That's over 10 years! How does it feel to be popular for so long?
I'm living the good life. I get to fly around the world, I help bring fun to millions, and I get to be the center of attention. I'm always in front of the camera since people just love taking videos of me.
Speaking about being in front of the camera, you recently had an exciting photo shoot. Could you tell us about that?
Oh, yes. A select group of office toys had their photos taken to be displayed as art at the Office Playground headquarters. It was such an honor to be a part of it. My photo is hanging on the same wall as the Koosh Ball. What can I say, it's the Koosh Ball! My photo looks amazing. I couldn't be happier about it.
You are certainly a very special monkey. What would you say is your best quality?
Besides my charming looks, I'd say my best quality is my impressive screaming voice. You can hear me scream every time I fly.
Your scream is quite impressive! Is flying scary? Is that why you scream?
It's never scary to fly. Flying is such a thrill! My scream is purely a sign of glee and excitement.
My best impression of your monkey call is ouu-eee-ahhh ouu-eee-ahh. Your fans are certainly are very curious to know its meaning. Does your famous monkey scream translate to English?
It might roughly translate to something in the human language, but I can't reveal all my secrets.
When you're ready to reveal the meaning of your monkey call, we'll be all ears. We hear you have a very admirable mission in life. How is that going?
I'm on a journey to end boredom and spread joy throughout the world. It's been extremely successful and rewarding, but it's never ending. I continue to spread my message daily.
What or who helps you accomplish this goal?
I couldn't do what I do without my fellow Slingshot Animals. We're like family. I have so many friends that help me out--there are too many to name!
Do you have a best friend?
The Relax Talking Stress Ball and I go way back. We definitely hit it off right from the start when we met in 2008. Now we travel around the world together... seeing all the sights and talking as soon as we reach our destination.
What would you say has been your greatest adventure?
Everything I do is a great adventure! I've been to companies of all kinds and homes all over the world. I've made appearances at several banks, schools, small businesses, non-profits, and many well-known companies. Some of my 'claim to fames' are several visits to an American telecommunications company in 2011, tours of a computer chip company in California, stops at a family company famous for its baby shampoo, many visits to a forward-thinking insurance company, and many more visits to one of the world's largest banks.
We're almost all out of time. Is there anything else that you'd like to tell your fans?
My mask and cape help hide my identity and support my mission, but my cape can help your mission too. My cape can be custom printed with your logo.
A printed cape? What a great idea!
We hope we could shed some light on our guest. The Slingshot Flying Monkey is a mysterious, but rather adorable caped crusader that simply wants to fly around the world and spread his message of fun. Until next time!
10 Ways to get Started on Mondays
Got a case of the Mondays? For some people, Mondays are the worst day of the week. Mondays are the furthest from the weekend, it's hard to get out of bed on a Monday morning, and Mondays mean another 5 days of mundane tasks. Mondays don't have to be as bad as you might think. If you do something fun the first thing on a Monday morning, you'll be excited and energized for a great start to the work week.
Are you ready for a happier Monday? Here are 10 "punny" ways to get your work week started (because Monday is Punday).
1. First, start with a clean slate.
Erase any mistakes from the week before and have a spotless start to your Monday.
Big Mistake Eraser
2. Be sure to get off on the right foot.
Put your best foot forward and establish a good beginning to the work week with any of these foot themed toys. Give one to your coworkers or employees to remind them you are looking forwarding to starting off on the right foot with them.
Finger Feet Foot Stress Toy Foot Calculator
3. Just take the first step.
Taking the first step is crucial for moving forward. When you take your first step, make a statement with these shoe themed accessories.
Wind Up Walking Sandals High Heel iPad Stand High Heel Tape Dispenser Pumped Up Phone Stand Inflatable Tennis Shoe Chair
4. Kick off your day.
Get started with a little game of Monday morning football.
Desktop Football Kit Mini Football Stress Ball - 5 inch Football Magnetic Sculpture
5. Set the ball rolling.
Here's the perfect stress ball for getting a rolling start.
Round Stress Ball - Blue Round Stress Ball - Purple Round Stress Ball - Orange
6. Get a jump start!
Jump ahead of your coworkers with jumping hoppers and poppers. They will jump in with you in a moment's notice.
Hip Hop Hopper Glitter Popper Toy Smiley Face Pop-Ups Glitter Ladybug Poppers
7. Take the plunge.
Like a plumber (if we're being literal) or a courageous astronaut, face your fears and take the plunge!
Plunge in like a plumber:
Toilet with Plunger Desktop Holder Toilet Coffee Mug Toilet Clock
Or, take the plunge like an astronaut:
Astronaut Ice Cream - Neapolitan Astronaut Fidget Toy Balancing Space Shuttle
8. This Monday, get off the ground.
How do you get off the ground? Start flying!
World's Smallest Helicopter Toy Remote Control Mini Flyer - Smiley
Or, these Anti-Gravity Mints are great for when you, or your breath, need a lift!
9. Then, why not hit the ground running?
If you can't get up in the air on a Monday morning, then get started by hitting the ground running. Do this with a burst of energy from a little exercise.
10. Start with a bang!
Take your morning coffee in a bold way.
Gun Coffee Mug - Silver Gun Coffee Mug - Black
When all else fails, go back to the drawing board.
Did someone say coloring books? (Someone did say drawing and that's close enough in our book.) Super Awesome
And when Monday is finally over, wind up your final thoughts and call it a day! Wind it all up with some wind up toys, of course!
Wind Up Chattering Teeth Flip-n-Spin Ladybug Wind Up Wind Up Snoozy the Snail Wind Up High Five Wind Up Flip Car All-Terrain