Making friends at work is not a requirement, but it sure does make the day go by smoothly. There are quite a few positive outlooks on having work besties for companies, customers, and the employees. In 2018 a study conducted showed 82% of employees admitted to having work friends and almost 30% said they had a work best friend.
Growing up during the 20th century we were inundated with “friends” sitcoms in life or at work on television networks. Some of my favorites were Night’s Court, Golden Girls, Seinfeld, Friends, and The Office. This is because as humans we usually want to make a connection. We work along with one another for 40+ hours a week. It is almost a necessity to get through those hours. Gallup administered research that shows that having close friends at work can increase productivity and loyalty.
Working remotely can be harder to navigate “making friends, but here are some ways to connect with colleagues:
- Show your personality in meetings, so that others can see if they share a common ground with you
- My background (shows my interests or things I like to surround myself with that make me happy)
- Facial expressions are still an effective way to show body language
- Make time to connect with others
- I chat with my work best friend every day and we don’t always talk about work. It could just be a simple “Good Morning.”
- We no longer live in the same state, but we make it a point to reconnect when we are in the same area.
- Doing something nice that others will enjoy
- I keep up with everyone’s birthdays and work anniversaries. I send JibJab’s or memes in a group chat to let them know they are not forgotten.
- Planning company gatherings remotely and staying connected
- Food is always a great way to start the day in the office (now we would send gift cards).
In the words of Whodini, “Friends, How many of us have them?…Friends, Ones we can depend on…” is a great motto to continue to have while getting through the work day. Work friends are directly correlated to higher engagement by 7% and higher profits by 12%. Try to build a culture of intentional development between employees. It will foster huge benefits for everyone involved.
Be sure to check out our other content, resources, and tools you can download from Hometown University that are things we have learned along the way that could be vital to your company’s success. If you would like to know more about any other content that we don’t have posted, please feel free to email me directly.