You may not consider your workplace a source of great, lifelong friends, but it turns out that making a few could increase your chances of being given more responsibility and more pay. CNN Money found that workers who help others, organise social activities, and make an effort to become friends with their coworkers have a 40 per cent higher chance of getting a promotion.
CNN points to one organisation that started essentially enforcing a friendliness policy, and that yielded positive results:
To increase social support, Ochsner Health System, a large Louisiana health care provider that Achor works with, implemented an approach called the “10/5 Way.” After educating 11,000 employees about the importance of offering support to each other, Ochsner asked employees to make eye contact and smile whenever they walk within 10 feet of another person in the hospital. If they pass within 5 feet, they say hello. Since then, Ochsner has seen a 5% increase in patients’ likelihood to recommend the organisation, greater unique patient visits, and a significant improvement in overall patient satisfaction.
It looks like in research and in practice, making friends is good for both you and and your company. Not only that, as we mentioned earlier today, isolation can stop the idea generation and creative teamwork in the office as well. While you definitely need to take your alone time and don’t want to be social to the point of no productivity, don’t rule out the importance of making friends. It could mean the difference between going nowhere and getting a promotion.