The Cartoon Bank Launches 'Humor In Business' Awards

Conducts National Search for Companies and Individuals Who Use Humor in Business for Fun and Profit

NEW YORK, March 29, 2005 (PRIMEZONE) -- Humor anthropologist Bob Mankoff and The Cartoon Bank, a division of The New Yorker Magazine and the world's leading licensor of magazine-style cartoons, today announced the first annual "Humor in Business Awards" to recognize companies and individuals who actively harness humor in the workplace to create a more fun and prosperous environment, to build employee, client and customer loyalty, and to differentiate their brands.

The awards program seeks to identify and honor those companies and executives that have effectively integrated humor into their corporate culture and business practices. The Cartoon Bank particularly seeks to recognize 'humor evangelists' who help spread the use of humor throughout their organization to help build success. The Cartoon Bank launched the national search with its charter sponsor, the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), at the start of the group's first annual conference, March 29-30, in Chicago. WOMMA's mission is to promote and improve word of mouth marketing.

The Cartoon Bank created the awards program to heighten awareness of the role humor can play in increasing productivity, creativity, employee retention and overall success. Ten finalists will be chosen for national recognition and awards. The top awarded company and/or humor evangelist will receive a free humor workshop and consultation with Bob Mankoff, founder and president of The Cartoon Bank and cartoon editor of The New Yorker, including a trip to New York and two-day Cartoon Bank Humor Fellowship, plus a signed original cartoon custom drawn by a New Yorker cartoonist to capture the company's humor culture.

"It's all about being human and interacting with each other as human beings rather than as cogs in a corporate machine. Humor helps build relationships and normalizes them; humor fosters cooperation which leads to increased productivity," said Mankoff. "Humor is the tool that transforms the petty annoyances of corporate life from anger and frustration into laughter. It helps you laugh at yourself and serves as an icebreaker in meetings and negotiations by stimulating fresh ideas, making personal connections and persuading an individual or a group in closing a deal," he added.

"There's nothing more genuine than how a good joke spreads between friends," said WOMMA CEO Andy Sernovitz. "It's funny how effective and authentic you can be with a little good humor. We're pleased to work with The New Yorker's Cartoon Bank to help spread the word about this great program."

The Cartoon Bank is accepting nominations for the "Humor in Business Awards" beginning today through September 30, 2005. Any individual working for a U.S.-based company can enter a nomination. The first 25 entries will receive a signed copy of "The Complete Cartoons of The New Yorker." Winners will be announced on October 31. Full details and entry forms are available on:; you can also phone The Cartoon Bank at 1-800-897-TOONS.

About The Cartoon Bank

The Cartoon Bank, a New Yorker Magazine company, features the world's largest resource of magazine-style cartoons. Bob Mankoff, founder and president, and The Cartoon Bank provide consulting, humor workshops, cartoon licensing and other products and services for businesses to use humor to grow their business. Mankoff also serves as a commentator on the role of humor in popular culture, politics, business and life.


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