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Would smashing up the printer raise your team’s morale?

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Are you looking to boost team morale and do you have deep-seated feelings of hatred against the office printer? Then you might be in luck. Thanks to a growing trend it is now possible to smash a printer to pieces in the name of team building.

The United States, Canada and several European countries are some of the places where so-called rage rooms have been setting up shop. The original idea by a company from Dallas, America, was simple: hand people a baseball bat and a hardhat and set them loose inside a room with some furniture to destroy.

A few years later, the concept has somewhat evolved. Rooms are offering sessions specifically designed as company team building events, often featuring an office printer or photocopier to smash up. Managers might hope it will help team members resolve some of the daily stress working in an office can bring about.

“Remember the last time your photocopier had a paper jam and you just got so angry. Here you’ve got a photocopier, and you can deal with the problem in a different way”, Harmut Mersch, owner of a rage room in Munich, Germany explained to Forbes.

Although being given permission to hit things with a sledgehammer will undoubtedly sound fun to many people, the therapeutic benefits might be limited.

“Venting anger does give you an immediate sense of relief but in the long run, one becomes accustomed to feeling angry”, said Sanja Marjanovic, a psychologist from Belgrade, to The Associated Press when commenting on the opening of the first rage room in Europe.

Managers in Asia might have to wait a little longer before they can take their team on a printer-bashing session. There have been no reports yet of rage rooms opening up on this side of the world.

For team leaders looking for a more extreme experience for their staff, a South Korean company might offer the solution. The Hyowon Healing Centre in Seoul runs bonding exercises during which team members stage their own funeral, with participants writing letters to loved ones, before lying down in a coffin while someone closes the lid.

“I thought going inside a coffin would be such a shocking experience it would completely reset their minds for a completely fresh start in their attitudes”, a participating employer told the BBC.

ALSO READ: The HR director’s guide to team building

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