The promo industry is naturally a fun industry. But how often do you let yourself have fun? Do you embrace playfulness at work, or are you more focused on productivity? It turns out the two can go hand in hand.

Terri Klass, founder of Terri Klass Consulting, says playfulness might be one of the best leadership superpowers. She encourages leaders to think about how things might feel different if they add an element of playfulness to their interactions.

In this issue of PromoPro Daily, we cover some of Klass’ top reasons all leaders should consider taking a more playful approach sometimes.

  1. Play opens the door to creativity. When kids play as pirates or princesses or anything they dream up, their imaginations run wild. Adults can also benefit from seeing things through a different lens. Klass says that through play, professionals can unleash their imagination.
  2. Play provides a beneficial pause. According to Klass, another great benefit to including play in leadership is that it allows leaders to step back from everyday routines and take a pause. Simply stepping away from the usual grind can help leaders see things they didn’t notice before. Through play, leaders can “just be.”
  3. Play sparks innovation. When kids build sandcastles or Lego creations, they feel empowered to innovate without rules or borders. The same concept can happen in our professional lives, Klass says. When leaders play, they discard any self-limiting beliefs.
  4. Play involves the body and the mind. If you stop and listen, the body can give information about how you’re feeling and what you should do. When you lead with an element of playfulness, Klass says you are using your body to make decisions. For example, ask yourself if you’re feeling tense or joyful in certain situations. Also consider what steps you should take if you’re feeling stress or anger.
  5. Playing is human. It’s OK to not take yourself so seriously. Look for ways to bring lightness to a situation and laugh about things that may not be going as planned. Through play, Klass says you can bring out your best self and figure out what’s important and how to proceed.

Anyone can develop a more playful approach to leadership. Be positive and playful in your interactions and encourage others to do the same. Also think about using playful and creative ways to celebrate your team members. Embrace being a promo professional and take your team on a playful path to success.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: Terri Klass founded Terri Klass Consulting. She specializes in areas like assertive communication, mentoring and team building.