Let’s take a moment to thank our lucky stars the April 1st was on a Sunday this year, as this means your workplace was spared the normal onslaught of practical jokes. While for most of us, we have 364 days to think of our next great prank, there are a few who celebrate April Fool’s Day year-round. If you are going to be the office prankster, there are some things to keep in mind. Below are our top do’s and don’ts for office pranks.
Do: Consider the audience. Your prank should align with your company’s culture. Yes, this means that sometimes you should not prank at all. If you’re going to pull a prank, it is best to only prank people you know well and work closely with – NOT the new hire.
Don’t: Prank a client/customer/patient. This should go without saying. Also, don’t pull a prank in front of any clients/customers/patients. This will make your company look unprofessional and may decrease trust.
Do: Be kind spirited and fun. Ask yourself these questions: 1. Could this prank hurt someone physically or emotionally? 2. Could this prank end with any property damage? 3. Could this prank hurt mine or the company’s reputation?
Don’t: Be offensive or discriminatory. Under no circumstances should a prank have anything to do with anyone’s race, gender, age, disability, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, sexual identity or any other protected status. That is a recipe for a lawsuit.
Do: Get a second opinion. Ask a trusted colleague, your HR representative and even your grandmother if a prank you have planned crosses the line. If there is any question about whether it is appropriate or not, do not do it.
Don’t: Disrupt work. People at work are there to – get this – work. An office prank that gets a few laughs is fun, but a prank that hinders productivity not only negatively affects your colleagues, but your clients as well.
Does your office participate in pranks? Why or why not? Share in the comments below.