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Speech held by Professor Marco Sampietro, SDA Bocconi School of Management at the NASA Project Management Challenge 2007.
Humour literature suggests that using or promoting humor during working time can have positive effects. Since projects represent important cost and revenue drivers for companies, it is relevant to understand the impact that humour has on projects. To conduct the analysis, projects have been studied along the main factors that affect their performance. First, the distinction between soft and hard skills has been used, than both dimensions have been broken down. In the soft skills domain, the effects of humour have been studied along these dimensions: leadership, negotiation, motivation, stress management, conflict management, team building, and communication. In the hard skills domain, the impact of humour on process, procedures and tools has been taken into consideration. Based on the existing humour literature, it has been found that both soft and hard skills may often benefit from the use of humour but shortcomings are also present.