Or is it?
A study has found that in some workplace situations the 'banter' is making staff feel uncomfortable.
I'm in an office where we're pretty relentless with each other. I think that generally it makes for a brilliant working environment and definitely aids camaraderie - and if you can't take it you shouldn't give it out. If it's not the banter here getting you, you're being shot by a colleague with a Nerf gun...either way, you need to stay on your toes at PIE, you can't afford not to! However, there's never a sense of one person always being the butt of the joke, it's equally dished out to everyone.
BUT there is a line and it shouldn't be crossed.
Whilst it's done in good spirit at PIE, I'm sure that there are many other office environments where the 'bants' are covering up something more insidious - be it sexism, homophobia, racism or any one of a number of equally disturbing undertones. And frankly if your employees are feeling uncomfortable, demotivated and downright offended, it's management's role to ensure that this is eliminated as that's not a nice environment to work in day after day.
After all it's one thing to have a laugh - even a laugh at someone else's expense. But it's quite another if they aren't laughing too.
Camaraderie between colleagues leads to a stronger connection to the company itself, according to a study titled ‘A Meta-Analytic Review of Social Identification and Health in Organizational Contexts.’ However, sometimes banter can get misconstrued and can borderline harassment. One in ten employees say that ‘banter’ crosses the line once a day, and one in four say it affects their communication with others, according to a recent survey by Focal Point Training.