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Have Fun At Work? This National Holiday Demands It

April 3 is National Don’t Go To Work Unless It’s Fun Day.

Whether or not your job is fun, this holiday presents an official opportunity to bring some enjoyment to the workplace. Maybe you can do it in an unconventional manner, too.

We are looking at what makes a workplace culture fun and some unique jobs that can make going to work more fun.

Having fun with unconventional jobs

Does the idea of an atypical career sound fun? Would having an uncommon job make you more grateful for how you earn money?

It depends on the type of unconventional job. Most people don’t want to earn a living by scrubbing semi-truck trailers, selling door-to-door, or working as a roofer somewhere in a harsh climate. (More power to you if you do.)

Plenty of other fun, unconventional jobs exist, though. Have you ever considered what it’s like to earn a living in a seasonal environment, like a river guide? What’s the life of a master brewer like? Or a professional poker player?

Let your imagination run wild for a second, especially if you’re sitting at work while reading this, and consider your job to fall into the “9-to-5” category.

In the spirit of National Don’t Go To Work Unless It’s Fun Day, we ranked various jobs based on different fun factors below. What is the most entertaining, unconventional job you can think of?

Here are a few that came to mind:

  • Tour guide: Can work at a specific place, like a stadium or winery. Or, you can help people explore an entire city.
  • Video game designer: While this job requires technical skills, it also allows creative minds an outlet to let their imaginations run wild.
  • Brewer: Learning to craft beer can be a dream come true for someone who loves beer.
  • Taste tester: This is a cool job for someone who loves trying new things, even if they might be gross.
  • Baker: This is a more versatile job than you might think—bread, cakes, and other desserts are only the beginning. (Do we have any Bake Off fans here?)
  • Adventure guide/river guide: Potentially a seasonal job that always keeps you on your toes and can offer a new experience every day.
  • Professional poker player: Do you have what it takes to thrive in pressure-filled moments when all the money is on the line?
  • Bank teller: Money is the name of the game here.
  • Security guard: Every security guard has a story or two of responding to an unconventional call, especially when alcohol is involved.
  • Slot machine attendant: Hopefully, you get to rejoice with winners when their machine hits and pays big.
  • Amusement/water park ride attendant: If you don’t like kids, this one’s out the window. If you do, this is one of the best places to contribute to their fun.
  • Athletic director: High school coaches can take their careers to the next level by becoming athletic directors and managing all sports programs at their school.

The most fun unconventional jobs

Fun, by its very nature, is a subjective term. That said, let’s have some more fun with the jobs listed above and rank them according to how “fun” they can be.

Every job can be fantastic or suck in the right (or wrong) conditions. Intangibles, like healthy company culture or great teammates and managers, can make or break a job. Therefore, the rankings attempt to consider more “objective” ways to measure fun.

  • Pay: Even if you don’t do something for the money, it’s fun to make money and be adequately compensated for the value you provide in a given industry.
  • Freedom of time: How many hours does a job require? What days/hours are “work days,” and what is “time off?”
  • Opportunity for growth: Nobody wants a dead-end job, no matter how much fun you might have day-to-day.
  • Uniqueness: Unconventional jobs should be unique, right? There are plenty of more “normal” jobs.
  • Role flexibility: Does a job have the same demands every day, or is it more dynamic, requiring workers to be on their toes and ready for whatever comes their way?

We used a scale of 1-5, with one being the lowest and five being the highest.

Most fun jobs ranked

Job
Pay
Freedom of Time
Opportunity for Growth
Uniqueness
Role Flexibility
Total
Taste Tester
4
5
2
5
4
20
Tour Guide
3
5
3
5
3
19
Adventure Guide/River Guide
2
4
3
5
4
18
Video Game Designer
5
2
5
4
2
18
Professional Poker Player
3
3
2
5
3
16
Brewer
3
3
2
5
3
16
Security Guard
3
2
2
3
4
14
Athletic Director
4
2
2
3
3
14
Bank Teller
3
2
3
3
2
13
Baker
1
2
3
4
2
12
Slot Machine Attendant
2
2
2
3
2
11
Amusement Park/Water Park Ride Attendant
1
3
2
3
2
11

Where to find the most fun jobs

Imagine if every day was Don’t Go To Work Unless It’s Fun Day.

Most people’s first job is not the type of place that invokes those feelings. Instead, people learn what they like and don’t like about a workplace as they progress through their careers. And hopefully, we find a mutually beneficial workplace that creates opportunities for growth for all parties.

Based on our findings, “fun” states to work in correlate with more expensive ones to live in. You might need to pay a little more to have fun, but it’s also probably worth it if your goals align.

The chart above is both subjective and location-dependent. After all, working as a walking tour guide might be unenjoyable in a Phoenix summer or a Chicago winter.

What are the best states to find fun, unconventional jobs? California and the entire West Coast are great places to start.

  • Taste tester: California (Bay Area)
  • Tour guide: California (Bay Area), Washington (state), Washington, DC
  • Adventure guide: All states with outdoor activities, especially Colorado, Arizona, Utah, California, North Carolina, and Tennessee
  • Video game design: California (Bay Area and Los Angeles), Texas (Austin), and Washington (Seattle)
  • Professional poker player: Nevada (Las Vegas), Texas, and Florida
  • Brewer: Vermont, Oregon, Michigan, North Carolina, Colorado, and California

What do you think? Will you be going to work on National Don’t Go To Work Unless It’s Fun Day? Or will you be seeking out a more fun job? Either way, we hope you find a fun way to celebrate this goofy holiday.

Characteristics of a fun workplace

A fun workplace is beneficial for managers and employees. It can create common ground and bring team members closer together. Fun in the workplace fosters cohesion and results in team members putting their best foot forward to accomplish more significant common goals.

Ways to increase fun:

  • Create team sporting events, book clubs, or offer other games like table tennis and Pop-A-Shot at the office.
  • Decorating the workplace: seasons, holidays, movie releases, and supporting local sports teams are easy ways to shift the office vibe.
  • Take a team lunch: you can cater if it’s within a budget or create a theme for everyone. For example, everybody packs a picnic lunch. Or, you can do a potluck.
  • Assuming the weather is nice, you can also take lunch outside or go for an afternoon walk.

Of course, these mean nothing without an underlying healthy company culture. When you work for a company whose greater purpose aligns with yours, even the hard days at work are worth it. Every day is already fun and rewarding, and extracurricular activities become the icing on the cake.

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