What Life is Really Like at SparkPeople

By , SparkPeople Blogger
As you might imagine, working at SparkPeople is pretty amazing. Not only do we get to talk and write about healthy living all day long, we get to interact with our wonderful and inspiring SparkPeople members. Plus we get to work with a really incredible group of people.

The SparkPeople team works incredibly hard to keep building new features to help members reach their goals, but we practice what we preach: All things in moderation. All work and no play is not SparkGuy or SparkPeople's way. When we get the chance, we step away from our desks and have a little fun.

From the software guys' midafternoon foosball games to the pushups challenge that Rachel, Nicole and I have been pursuing and our Friday afternoon Wii games, we try to have some fun in the office. And while we're serious about healthy living, we don't take ourselves too seriously.

So when our Software Engineering Manager, Paul, took paternity leave, the other guys in the "tech" department decided to surprise him with a new office. With a newborn and a ridiculously cute and intelligent 3-year-old daughter at home, Paul was bound to need some privacy and "me time" at the office. And that's just what he got. (That's Paul in the main photo on this blog post!)

Paul's desk was turned into a fort (or a padded room, say the pessimists in the group). (SparkGuy thought you'd love to see this!)

This is perhaps the second best desk makeover here at SparkPeople. Another co-worker's desk was shrinkwrapped while he was on vacation. He just cut some holes so he could use his keyboard, mouse and other necessary items and left the shrinkwrap intact. His desk was clean and all wrapped up for weeks!

From the folks at SparkPeople, this has been your daily reminder to not take yourself too seriously.

Do you take yourself too seriously? How do you kick back and break loose?

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If everyone followed your advice not to take himself or herself too seriously, it would put counselors like me out of work! But, SERIOUSLY, we SparkPeople know that the SITE is the absolute best---and now we also know that your workplace is also. Soooooo glad to be part of this wonderful movement! Report
What a fun place to work! Got any job openings? Report
Sounds like a great place to work, and a great team to work with. Glad you guys don't take yourself too seriously, and it's great you have fun too! Great blog. Report
On April Fool's day a few years ago, myself and another girl saran-wrapped our bosses office. We hid all sharp objects in the draw, and then saran-wrapped the draw shut. We did his whole desk, including everything on it, his trash can, all three chairs, everything!! It was hysterical! The other day I saw him, and he had just come across 6 CD's that I had wrapped together. Report
too funny Report
If my workplace had been like yours at Sparkpeople, I would not have taken the early retirement! Kudos to your leadership and all of you for practicing what you preach. Enjoyed the pics...thanks for sharing and letting us get to know you better. Report
I think I could work there... Report
INGENIOUS! Just gotta love office fun! Report
Wow!!! What a Great Place to Work! Report
I sure wish I could work there! Report
It sounds like a great place to work! Report
LOL... this is just the sort of thing I would do, if I were that creative! =o) Report
What an abundance of information...thanks! Report
We like to decorate and celebrate whenever we can at my office. Report
Where I used to work we had cubicles. When a co-worker went on vacation we shrink wrapped her cubicle. The economy is causing my company to lay people off so we are not having a whole lot of fun right now. Report
The older I get, the less serious I am. Wonder why that is?? Report
Congrats to paul on the new baby!! And what a great work environment!! Report
That sounds like so much fun! Yes, I am afraid I take myself, my job, and my life way too seriously. Not fun. Report
That's a fabulous atmostphere/attitude SP has in its workplace. Keep modeling that behaviour for the rest of corporate America please! Report
I try not to think or feel serious about anything. Even when my grandson (15 months) won't stay off the coffe table. Life's too short always find something to laugh about Report
No, I don't take myself too seriously and I wouldn't take me seriously either if I were you LOL Report
Oh, please, please, please open up a UK office in the far NE of Scotland. I'm doing business at college. I would be perfect to run it! Honest!!

Thank you for this little glimpse into the world of Spark. Report
Life is too short to take everything to seriously live a little and have some fun Report
Yes, I do take myself too seriously sometimes. That is an ongoing battle, which I fight all the time.

I would love to work for SP and I live in N. Ky.
I think you need to open another office in Texas. I will be the first to apply. Report
Life gives life! Sparkpeople is a lot of fun on our end too!!! =) Report
I'm always glad to hear about offices like this. Mine is similar! Report
You guys are great!:) Thanks for all your encouraging, educating, and communicating with us. Keep enjoying yourselves so you'll do a good job for us! Report
so much fun going on Report
I don't work any longer but I did for many years. Most of the time it was all work, all stress and no play. There were very few fun, light moments I hate to say. So as far as taking myself serious, yes I did. I took myself too seriously but that's all I was around at work so as the saying goes, "If you can't beat em, join em".
I wish I could have been in a work environment like SparkPeople's. It sounds like you've got the perfect mix of humor, fun and hard work. That perfect mix means happier and healthier lives without all that stress that some other workplaces have. I love you guys!!
P.S. I would join the work force again if you hire me!! Report
I worked for years in hospitals and everything was SERIOUS and by the book, so I could never imagine working in lots of places today that do all types of things. My brother worked in the coal mine and the way MEN talked about what went on in the bedroom at home and their wives was something I could never have imagined hearing in the professional settings I worked in. But, they got the dangerous job done, so that is what matters. You all get the job done, and that is great. Report
I owned and operated a Cocktail Lounge\Restaurant in Riverside California for 27 years and although there was plenty of relaxed and fun times the stress was ever present with the responsibility of owning a business and employing several people not to mention serving alcoholic beverages to the public and doing so responsibly. I wouldn't trade the experience, however, I am so happy that I am no longer there! I am so appreciative of the work that all of you do on our behalf and the benefits you produce for all of us are obvious! Keep having fun, it seems to work great! Report
Oh I love the practical jokes...can I work for you and come up with some more??? Report
Not anymore. I take one hour per day and one day per week for me, myself and whatever I want to do or not do...I relax more and enjoy my days on purpose. Report
I can't even imagine working somewhere that allows such things to exist. My positions were all work, no play. Lots of tension, yes. Relaxation, no. Thanks for sharing. Report
sorry, I meant balloons! Report
I'm retired now, but when I was still working, I came in on my birthday to find my office almost completely filled with ballons! Report
I have a great job as well - yesterday, all the top sellers in each team (self included) got to compete in Wii bowling for a nice prize. It truly makes the mundane daily tasks worthwhile. We receive recognition, a fun time and possibly a special prize. I like it! Report
oh my!
i definitely take myself seriously- and some who work with me would probably say tooo seriously at times, but i work in human services with really ill people who need someone to care, listen and help...
that said, i would like to work on taking me less seriously! Report
Where do I apply? Report
Thank you, Thank you. Your comments made my day :When we get the chance, we step away from our desks and have a little fun.
And while we're serious about healthy living, we don't take ourselves too seriously.

I love it.
I have friends over and we have fun on the Wii. I love the boxing and bowling the best.

Thank you again, I hope more people read this. Report
Paul was probably very glad of the isolation as he could perhaps get a little nap. With two young ones at home he probably needs a little peace and quiet! Report
I would so fit in with you guys! I'm a teacher so we are expected to maintain a professional demeanor and dress at all times. One year I tried a new approach to waking up sleeping students. I was reprimanded for using a water gun on the students. It wouldn't have been so bad but the seniors came for their last day wearing all plastic and packing super soakers just waiting for the end of the day when I would leave the building. The administration didn't think it was funny.... Report
I think my sense of humor and take on life would fit in perfect with all of yours. I want to work at SparkPeople. :) Report
Glad you all have a sense of humor. Most places I've been if you do that they just think you are crazy. Report
I love it. I wish we could goof off a little more at work. Report
Congrats to Paul on their new baby! What a fun office to work in...god bless employers like sparkpeople.com!! Where I worked before disability, I was responsible for 14 people and if one of them did not show up, it was my job to complete this person's job and my own...both a minimum of 8+ hours work. I started from home at 5:30 am. to be there at 6:30 did the absent person's work for 8-9 hours and T-commed the sales orders and off to complete my own work, after which I got home at 10 P.M. In between all that handle my own cell calls from customers, other sub-ordinates, boss who never stopped bothering you for one thing or other; voice mail messages and driving whole day! How in the world did we manage all for no big deal of a salary!! No time even to look for another job.

Wish more employers would be like 'spark guy' ... you lose all your sense of humor, being unable to live your life - just surviving, unable to fall asleep from 'no unwinding'. Enjoy your job and don't ever leave it...had I the wisdom I do now, I would have switched jobs for lesser pay and more fun!! Report
It looks like a blast to work at SP. WE always tease each other at work.
there is a lady that doesn't like rats, and we are always getting fake ones and finding hiding places for them. or we take something that they are using, and move it and smile while they try to find it. Of course we don't let things get to far and frustrate them. We work with special needs kids and they LOVE to get in on the tricks, it makes everyone have a better day!
tina1 Report
I loved reading this because it's always a joy to hear when a group of people enjoys each other so much. Thanks for telling us a little bit about yourselves.
I'm glad to hear that you all play Wii games. I was wondering if someone could come up with the amount of calories you burn when playing these games. Then you could enter it onto the exercise choices on this web site. Sometimes older and/or disabled people can't find a lot of regular exercises they can do, but this is a good one for us. Report
Congrats to Paul on becoming a dad again! Love the new office. Seeing that you all take time to have some fun is setting a good example for the rest of us. I used to take myself and my job too seriously but that all changed years ago. I have a better life balance now. Report
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