The other night, I had the honor of photographing the annual Red Vs. Blue Bowl. Simply put, the Urbandale Police Department challenges the Urbandale Fire Department every year at a rousing game of flag football. This year, they raised over $13,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. (And for those who care about these fiercely fought contests, Police beat Fire 18-14 to win back the trophy after last year's defeat.)
While everybody had a great time, and a very deserving charity received a boost to their budget, I found myself thinking about the concepts of "doing good" and "having fun" while photographing the game. At our jobs, do we think about serving the customers AND making it a blast for ourselves (and for them)? Helping the community is an obligation we all have as citizens. Having fun is a choice each of us must make internally. I always think about the World Famous Pike Place Fish Market, who capitalized on the idea of infusing fun into otherwise hard and somewhat disgusting work.
I've found one fundamental truth as I've developed my speaking career: people love to laugh. Allow them to laugh at themselves, at their jobs, at their bosses and coworkers, at (with) their customers, at the absurdity of the world around them. If you can harness the laughter into making someone else's life a little better and their load a little lighter, then you have achieved one of the biggest win-win accomplishments ever.