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The benefits of having a best friend at work

December can be a very hectic, stressful and short month with deadlines to be met and preparations to be made for the New Year. It can be difficult to get into the Christmas spirit and socialise with colleagues and easy to bury your head before the Christmas break. However a study has shown that by having a best friend at work and engaging and communicating with colleagues can in fact improve productivity and wellbeing.

A recent study from Gallup on Wellbeing: The Five Essential Elements, explores all key aspects of wellbeing such as social, career, physical, financial and community within workplaces. The study contradicts past research that indicated that by having friends and socialising at work, this can be a distraction and decrease productivity. It proved that, “30 percent of respondents who reported having a best friend at work were seven times more likely to be engaged at their jobs”.

Gallup’s study goes on to explain how, “Employee engagement is about people fulfilling their commitments to other people they care about and people who will then reciprocate that with support in the future.” It provides employees a sense of belonging within the workplace and develops a network of trust increasing employee well-being.

As busy as it may be in work, this time of year gives you a great excuse being sociable and increasing your wellbeing at work. Scheduling time to informally connect with colleagues allows you to get into the right mind set for work and lift your spirit in time for the festive season. You could try interacting with colleagues outside of your own team or in a different department, asking for help or advice or even being available to give a helping hand can add value to your work.

Great places to socialise are rejuvenating spaces such as the WorkCafé or impromptu places for example whilst you are getting your morning cuppa or while on lunch so you’re not interrupting others. Discussing Christmas decorations around the office or even comparing Christmas jumpers, it is a great way of creating relationships with colleagues.

Go on… get social!

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