The Joy Of Work – Bruce Daisley

The one sentence summary: There are 30 ways to fix your work culture and fall in love with your job again.


  • The book is divided into three sections: recharge, sync, and
  • Recharge: performance-enhancing ways to make work less awful
    1. Have a monk mode morning: block off time and think properly.
    2. Go for a walking meeting: science shows they are more creative.
    3. Celebrate headphones: people need flexibility to work as they like.
    4. Eliminate hurry sickness: slower is better than doing it twice.
    5. Shorten your work week: they are proven to be more productive.
    6. Overthrow the mill owner who lives inside you: presenteeism doesn’t work.
    7. Turn off your notifications: they distract you.
    8. Go to lunch: if you don’t, you’ll suffer physically and mentally.
    9. Define your norms: don’t assume your work culture is inevitable.
    10. Have a digital sabbath: don’t email at weekends.
    11. Get a good night’s sleep: self-evident, this one.
    12. Focus on one thing at a time: multitasking doesn’t work.
  • Sync: fixes to make teams closer
    1. Move the kettle: people mix more readily over food and drink areas.
    2. Suggest a tea break: or drinks to get the whole company together.
    3. Halve your meetings: either their length or their number.
    4. Create a social meeting
    5. Laugh: it improves everything.
    6. Energise inductions: first impressions are the most important.
    7. Stop (being) a bad boss: do no harm and really understand peoples’ work.
    8. Know when to leave people alone: don’t meddle or micromanage.
  • Buzz: secrets of energised teams
    1. Frame work as a problem you are solving
    2. Admit when you messed up: hot debriefs (immediate) are the best.
    3. Keep teams lean: adding people to a late project makes it later.
    4. Focus on the issue, not the people
    5. Introduce a Hack Week
    6. Ban phones from meetings
    7. Champion diversity
    8. Replace presenting with reading: read briefing papers properly.
    9. Conduct a pre-mortem: ask at the beginning what will go wrong.
    10. Relax


  • Most of these ideas echo precisely what I suggested in Tick Achieve over ten years ago.


  • If you read a bit, you will have seen most of these ideas before.