If you believe the workplace is no place to make friends, you’re not only wrong, but your delusion could be hurting your career, says corporate trainer Shola Richards.
Gallup polls show a connection between having workplace friendships and achieving business results. Other Gallup research states that people with a workplace best friend are seven times more likely to be engaged in their jobs. That person can help you stay productive, happy and sane at work.
Richards explains how your work friends help you with these three key things.
- Productivity. A lot of tasks require cooperation with your co-workers and the ones who like you will be much happier to play along when you need them. Sure, it may be a job requirement that they do so. If they like you, then you’ll get the help you need when you’re sick or running up against a deadline.
- Happiness. Having friends on the job makes it a much nicer place to go than a workplace full of people you’re apathetic about or dislike. One study calculated that the average American will spend 122,400 hours at work over the course of her life. Who wants to be unhappy with or simply tolerating her surroundings for that much time? Also, being unhappy isn’t good for your health, research has found.
- Sanity. You’ll have to work and play nice with plenty of people who drive you nuts. To hold onto your sanity and keep a positive attitude, you’ll need to vent to someone, and the best person is a work friend.
— Adapted from “The Workplace Myth That Could Kill Your Career,” Shola Richards, Brazen Careerist.