Work Friends Matter
I had lunch with a friend at work today. Not just a co-worker…a friend. We sat at a sushi bar and talked about our lives and batted around work ideas in a way that we could have done whether we worked together or not. When we got up to leave, I felt better about life, I felt better about work, and I even felt better about the world. I felt more connected, and I felt more like myself.
This brief lunch reinforced Gallup’s research — “having a best friend at work” matters (note: “best” is used here a way to differentiate, not necessarily connoting what we think of as a “best friend”). Gallup talks about why it matters in the context of engagement + productivity at work, but from a personal perspective, I think it’s important to think about how much it matters in terms of our emotional well-being. Spending as much time at work as we do in today’s world, having a friend — or lots of friends — at work makes it easier to be our true, authentic selves. It makes it easier for us to show the highs and the lows…to share what’s working and what’s not…to give open and honest feedback…and to stay emotionally connected to a company and a culture.
So I end this week grateful…to live in a world where as life and work are blending, friendship connects the two.
Do you have a great friend at work, and how has it changed your work…and your life?