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The Importance of Not Being Earnest

by Siobhan Hammond, Director of Client Services, BergHind Joseph

If you think back to your childhood days, they were probably filled with giggling, laughter, chatter and fun. It was a time when your greatest concern was whether to have fish-fingers or pizza for tea and your biggest conflict was with your parents and what time you had to go to bed.

Fast-forward to today and that joyful, care-free attitude is probably a distant memory. Since making our voyage into adulthood and becoming working men and women, a hypothetical ‘serious’ switch has been flicked – something that’s made apparent when we pass through the threshold of work: the place where all too often we become stern, unemotional and won’t engage in laughter or social engagement.

It may sound like an extreme interpretation, but the idea is not far from reality. When at work, most of us believe that we must be serious in order to be taken seriously. Why? The reason is two-fold:

1. We have a fear of being seen as “[insert name here] the joker” which will threaten our professional position and career progression