Most Avoid Workplace Pranks – But…

April 1, 2004 ( - Nearly one in four workers say they have been the victim - or the victimizer - of an April Fool's Day prank, according to

Perhaps more remarkable is that 77% of the 1,500 workers surveyed said they could not recall any April Fool’s Day trickery at their place of business.

Among the pranks cited by those who had experienced one side or other of a prank were:

  • “A co-worker crank-called me saying that I was being fined $500 for not showing up to jury duty that day.”
  • “I was told by a co-worker that I could leave early, which I did. It turns out it wasn’t true.”
  • “My staff left voicemail messages one-by-one with different excuses why they wouldn’t be able to report to work (car trouble, sick, funeral, etc.). Meanwhile, they were all hiding in an office one floor below.”
  • “Someone switched the “M” and “N” keys on my keyboard.”
  • “They super-glued my drawers shut.”
  • “Someone at the office put a fake engagement announcement about me in the local paper.”
  • “Unbeknownst to me, a friend at work hung a sign on the back of my car that read, ‘Please wave, I have no friends!'”

Those who had initiated pranks noted:

  • “We moved someone’s entire office contents to the front lobby.”
  • “We placed a fake outline of a dead body on the floor when clients came to visit.”
  • “I swapped the felt tip from a highlighter with the felt tip from a black magic marker.”
  • “We taped down the pins that pop up when you pick up the telephone, so it just kept ringing and ringing when the receptionist tried to answer a call.”
  • “We all turned in our resignations to the boss … we later said we were kidding.”
  • “I hid in a box that had been shipped to us that day and jumped out at my boss when he opened it.”
  • “We did the typical: changed someone’s screensaver to something inappropriate, switched the men’s and ladies’ room signs, put a spider on someone’s shoulder, etc.”
  • “We stole a co-workers favorite, old broken down chair from the office and took Polaroid pictures with co-workers sitting in it at different tourist or business locations. We made him go on a hunt for the chair, which led him back to the office where we had balloons and food waiting.”