About Laughology.

Laughology, founded in 2006, by Stephanie Davies, is a unique and ethical, consulting and development APPROACH built around the psychology of humour, laughter and happiness.


The Laughology approach improves performance and builds happy and effective organisations across business, education and health sectors, by using a combination of full organisational behaviour change programmes, supported by one off sessions and workshops.


About us

About Laughology

Laughology, founded in 2006, by Stephanie Davies, is a unique and ethical, training and consulting organisation built around the psychology of humour, laughter and happiness.

The Laughology model of learning and development improves performance and builds happy and effective organisations across business and education sectors, by using a combination of full organisational behaviour change programmes, supported by one off sessions and workshops.

About

Find out how Laughology went from an occasional titter to a standing ovation

Laughology is much more than just having a laugh.

Our clients bring as much happiness to us, as we hope we bring to them.

A theory is just a theory, without the people to breathe life into it.

Find workshops programmes and keynotes

Organisations

Training workshops

Programmes and consultancy

Conference keynotes

Education

Pupil workshops

Teacher inset workshops

School conference keynotes

Happy-centred school programme

Read more: About us

Client case studies

Case Studies

We work with public and private sectors organisations throughout the UK.

We devised a bespoke programme of sessions designed to build participants’ emotional intelligence, using humour as a leadership mind-set. The programme was delivered in a series of sessions over a two-year period.

We designed a series of sessions during which managers were given engaging and practical tools to help them develop communication and people skills. The programme was delivered through four full-day courses with a three-week gap between each session.

In 2012 Laughology began working with the head teacher, staff and pupils to implement a ground-breaking initiative with the aim of embedding happiness at the heart of school life.

HSBC wanted Laughology to complement its highly successful training and development programme with an engaging, science-based module addressing the subject of unconscious bias.

Laughology worked with BNP Paribas to develop a programme which taught the art of effective communication to participants on the bank’s fast-track management scheme

Laughology devised a series of bespoke, immersive sessions with managers which helped them gain a greater understanding of resilience and increased emotional capital and engagement throughout the team.

We designed a bespoke, multi-level, multi-faceted programme for senior and middle management and introduced various models through a series of workshops and training programmes to deliver communication skills and build emotional capital through the organisation to assist in developing behaviour change.

Through interviews and discussion sessions we assessed the most relevant and useful skills the new heads of years needed to achieve the goals required. We developed a bespoke programme to embed new and effective skill sets.

Read more: Client case studies

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How it all began

Laughology began in 2006 when its founder, Stephanie Davies set out to create a unique, ethical, development tool built around the psychology of humour, laughter and happiness.

Read more: How it all began

How it started - the titter years!

About Laughology

Laughology - the titter years!

“There is little success where there is little laughter.” A fridge magnet

At the end of the noughties, manufacturers of inspirational nick-nacks, hand-painted pebbles and hanging pendants latched on to the commercial benefits of laughter and happiness and began a land-grab for any quote on the subject ever muttered by anyone vaguely famous. The results now festoon homes across the globe.

Our founder, comedian Stephanie Davies, watched this with bemusement, for she understood the power of humour and laughter long before Gandhi’s words became trinkets.

Laughology started as an idea when Stephanie was working on the stand-up circuit

She recognised that laughter and humour could not only help her survive in male-dominated working men’s clubs in the North, but could also be utilised as a tool to empower individuals and organisations.

In addition to her stand-up career, Stephanie, who trained in community arts, worked in several community projects. Here, her interest in the psychological processes which underpin humour and laughter developed, and led her to embark on a Master’s Degree in psychology, in which she researched the neurological processes which drive humour and happiness in the human brain. Her investigations took her to the US where she studied at the world-famous Gesundheit! Institute with Hunter Doherty "Patch" Adams; the doctor, author, comedian and social activist whose life was immortalised in the Robin Williams movie, Patch Adams. Stephanie became one of the UK’s most renown experts on the science of humour, laughter and happiness.

Put the kettle on and get yourself a HobNob!

A 5-minute animation about Laughology - past and present

In 2006, most of the corporate world was still in the happiness Dark Ages, believing that productivity resulted when people worked harder. Against this backdrop, and contrary to the advice of several scoffing bank managers, Stephanie set up Laughology. She knew there was a better, more effective way to help people and organisations be better and thrive.

She used her stand-up performance skills and scientific knowledge to create a learning and development consultancy like no other. Laughology training was underpinned by the neuroscience of humour, laughter and happiness and delivered in a fun, dynamic, interactive laugh-out-loud style that was, and remains, an antidote to the flip-chart*, grey-suited lecturing status quo.

At Laughology, we understand that happy people work better and that happiness is not about gimmicks, quick-wins and fridge magnets. Realistic happiness hinges on tangible factors such as resilience, problem-solving, sustainability, positive relationships, personal development and support.

At the start of the Laughology journey, Stephanie explained to fellow comedian Kerry Leigh that she was going to change the world with laughter.

Kerry questioned her friend’s sanity but was, nonetheless, press ganged into service and soon became a convert. She is still the longest-serving Laughology facilitator. Others followed. Word spread.

Laughology developed programmes and training for schools, public sector organisations and businesses. Dave Keeling, with his background in comedy and acting, was a perfect fit for the growing business. Juliette Yardley, with her experience in psychology also joined the band of merry trail-blazers.

Today we have a team of like-minded experts from a range of fields, including former headteachers and HR consultants, who are experts in behaviour change, positive psychology, the neuroscience of learning and organisational development.

Several years after we were established, something strange happened. People started taking happiness seriously.

In the wake of recession, the Conservative Government launched the national happiness index in 2010, realising that happiness was a better indicator of wellbeing than GDP. Education, faced with an epidemic of pupil mental health issues, started to address pupil happiness.

Businesses realised that to increase productivity they had to look after their people and make them happy (most called it engagement as they still had a problem with the word happiness).

 

Suddenly, those scoffing bank managers were no longer laughing (apart from the ones who had been on Laughology courses). Of course, none of this came as a surprise to us. We’d known all along that there is little success where there is little laughter. We remain the UK’s most refreshingly different learning and development company and one of its most successful. We work internationally with some of the world’s biggest brands and businesses in all sectors. We work with schools and governments to build better people and organisations.

Our workshops, bespoke programmes and keynotes cover a huge range of subjects, from culture change, transformation and diversity to menopause awareness, absenteeism and workplace wellbeing. We continue to grow and develop.

Our Happy-Centred Schools programme was the first of its kind in the UK and continues to help schools and pupil achieve more. We launched the UK’s first Happiness Awards to honour organisations which use happiness to empower people. And everything we do is still delivered with the fun, laughs and dynamics that have always been the Laughology trademark.

*We sometimes use flip-charts. But we draw funny things on them.   

WE WORK WITH ORGANISATIONS AND SCHOOLS THROUGHOUT THE UK

Click the logos to read the case studies

Read more: How it started - the titter years!

How it works

Laughology - how it works

IT’S NOT ROCKET SCIENCE
Happy brain = happy person

At Laughology, we understand the science of happiness, humour and laughter more than most, because we’ve spent over a decade studying them and designing ways to make lives better using them.  Our science-backed approach uses data from neuroscientists, psychologists and our own research to underpin everything we deliver and the way in which we deliver it.

We don’t just use laughter and comedy because we are show-offs (although that’s part of it). We know that humour and laughter trigger processes in the brain which make learning more effective. They also trigger the release of certain neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and serotonin, which heighten emotional response and maximise neurological function. So, when we present programmes, workshops and keynotes with fun, interaction and laughs, we know that delegates are more likely to remember the key messages and content we deliver.

We also understand that happiness is a much more nuanced emotional state than just being content and pleased with life. No one can be happy all the time – that would be a disorder and if we promised to deliver it, we would get prosecuted under the Trades Description Act. Real happiness – or realistic happiness as we call it - is a complex mix of mindsets and emotional states which combine to create positivity, resilience and robust mental health. Our research tells us that realistic happiness is made of five main drivers. These are confidence, coping skills, positive relationships, support and personal development. Within each of these there are other factors, such as a sense of purpose. We’ve developed a model and a lovely diagram (because people like diagrams) to illustrate this – the Laughology Happiness Matrix (we’re proud if this – can’t you tell).

Of all the emotional states, happiness is arguably the most sought-after and the most elusive. Research has found that happy people contribute more; they are more motivated, supportive, resilient and productive, and they are also healthier. Consequently, happiness is now the Holy Grail that businesses and organisations try to develop in their employees and that governments try to provide to their citizens.

By drilling down into the science of what happiness really is, and designing effective methods to deliver it, Laughology has developed a set of unique, ground-breaking training and development interventions which improve outcomes in all areas of life.

And it works – just ask the people we work with.

HAPPINESS ACCORDING TO LAUGHOLOGY

Undoubtedly things like being active, safety and security impact on happiness. These are not included on the above matrix as the matrix is designed to help understand where and how skills can be taught to increase happiness and what can improve happiness on a cognitive, relationship and organisational level.
It is important to note that avoiding unhappiness will not make you happy and that happiness is not a constant.

Life is full of challenges and ups and downs. Experiencing all emotions and challenges is part of life’s rich tapestry. Therefore having skills to face any situation, to learn from all experiences and to flourish through tough times as well as happy times will enable a ‘happier’ existence.
‘We should concern ourselves not so much with the pursuit of happiness but with the happiness of pursuit’.

WE WORK WITH ORGANISATIONS AND SCHOOLS THROUGHOUT THE UK

Read more: How it works

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You can call us on 0844 800 1701, or use this form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.


 

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NOMINATIONS ARE NOW OPEN FOR THE NATIONAL HAPPINESS AWARDS 2017

Over £5000 worth of prizes to be won. 

Organisations and business

  • Happiest Workplace
  • Happiest Employee (all levels)
  • Happiest Team
  • Happiest Future Leader (graduate or apprentice)

Schools and education

  • Happiest School
  • Happiest School Employee
    (Teacher, Head Teacher or Support Staff)
  • Happiest Pupil

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Laughology
Suite 869, Kemp House,
152 - 160 City Road,
London EC1V 2NX

T: 0844 800 1701
E: Laughology
F: 0208 337 9262