HR Strange But True!
February 11, 2010

While employers may have good intentions at healing wounded morale in their workplaces,'s Michelle Goodman reports she's been hearing some horror stories about “morale events gone bad.”

Like your SBT editors, Goodman receives several press releases a week reporting on boosting employees' spirits and productivity, but lately, she is hearing about events that are more “mangled” than incentivizing. So she asked her readers to send her their most laughable tales:

  • Asked employees to shave their heads if they met a goal
  • Dressed up in bunny suits and served breakfast to employees
  • Announced at an event “we are here to work, not have fun”
  • Asked everyone at the event to describe what they didn't like about the person in the next seat--resulting in 2 hours of yelling
  • Told employees they would get a home-cooked gourmet dinner if they met a goal--then retired before the date the meal was scheduled
  • Announced company will give a rose in a vase to each customer service rep who received a complimentary letter from a customer--then going to a dollar store and buying vases that look like urinals
  • Awarded employees an unexpected cash bonus, then reconsidered and told the employees that they would take half of the bonus back by deducting money from their next few paychecks
  • Gave the company's “Award of Excellence” at event to an employee who was just laid off!

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