Fun. It's not what drives people to leap out of bed in the morning and rush happily to the office, but knowing that work won't be all work certainly doesn't hurt. Fun lifts the spirits, makes onerous tasks easier, and creates an environment in which everyone is willing--even eager--to work hard and well together. As employees and bosses alike put in longer and longer hours, having fun at work is almost a necessity. (I personally try to have as much as possible.)

It's a good thing when the dog at the top recognizes the value of fun. A while back, my boss, John Koten, CEO and editor in chief of Mansueto Ventures, e-mailed me with this suggestion: "Why don't we do a FUN issue? I think it's a potentially rich subject. And I think it's timely because we live in such a serious world." Other Inc. editors agreed, and so, in this month's issue, you'll find a number of stories on a subject that turns out to be near and dear to the hearts (and corporate missions) of many successful entrepreneurs--whether they're running call centers, ad agencies, or pond-supply companies. The issue is full of ideas you may want to introduce at your company. I know I found a few. Which leads me to ask my boss: Where are your roller skates? And where is my nap room?

Jane Berentson