Create Captivating Legal Training With These 3 Hilarious Clips from "The Office"

Corporate counsel are notorious for dry legal training presentations. 

Slide after slide of text-heavy content with not an image or video in sight. 

Even when corporate counsel use images, they tend to look like this: 

(BIG IDEA MAN! WEIRD-SIZED-PANTS MAN! SMALL BRIEFCASE MAN!)

How do you expect to keep employees engaged? Don't you find yourself drifting off or checking your phone when outside counsel use the same boring tactics during those free CLEs?

The Office is here to rescue your legal training. 

To be clear, any humorous (and appropriate) videos will electrify your presentations and keep employees engaged. I prefer The Office

Even though it's somewhat dated, The Office is particularly useful for legal training. Michael Scott is the most inappropriate boss of all time.  None of the employees engage in any legal best practices of any sort. Toby, the HR manager and only voice of reason on the show, is openly despised by Dunder-Mifflin employees. 

In short, The Office provides corporate counsel with an enormous amount of hilarious "what not to do" clips that can be incorporated into employee legal training presentations. 

Here are my top 3:

1. Michael Scott Sensitivity Training

Best used in HR Training, Nondiscrimination, Anti-harassment

Background: Michael fell into a koi pond at a mall earlier in the episode. The employees are giving Michael a hard time and he's sick of it. Michael institutes "sensitivity training" to stop the "harassment". It doesn't go well...

(NOTE: unfortunately, this video was removed from YouTube after the date of publication - Sorry!)

From: "Koi Pond," Season 6, Episode 8 

2. The Guys Start a Union

Best used in HR Training, NLRA, Labor Training, Nondiscrimination, Anti-harassment

Background: Michael's boss, Jan is holding a women-only training event at the office. Michael takes offense to being excluded and starts his own "guys-only" group which quickly leads to talks of unionization of the warehouse. Jan and Michael deal with the situation horribly...

From: "Boys & Girls," Season 2, Episode 15

3. Michael Scott Fights Corporate

Best used in Role of Legal Department Training, HR Training, Nondiscrimination, Anti-harassment

Background: Michael is in trouble with corporate after he forwards an email filled with crude humor. HR and corporate step in to deal with Michael who believes they're infringing on his freedom of speech. Obviously, Michael can't contain himself...

(NOTE: unfortunately, this video was removed from YouTube after the date of publication - Sorry!)

From "Sexual Harassment," Season 2, Episode 2

It's important to note that even though using these clips will keep your employees engaged, it is not always appropriate to use video clips (or any humor devices) for certain audiences. While these sorts of clips may be perfect to use for training new managers on "do's and don'ts", it may not be wise to use them in a presentation to the Board of Directors. 

Additionally, you will also want to consider your company's corporate culture before using any sort of humorous media. While I would encourage you to incorporate humor wherever reasonable, senior management may (at first) be skeptical.

For more information on whether these clips are appropriate  for your company, NPR has a great article on the subject - Should 'The Office' Be Used In HR Training?

 Bottom line: make sure to ease humor into your legal training presentations appropriately.