Why Companies Encourage Socializing at Work

2020-02-10T14:57:49+00:00October 25th, 2018|Wellbeing, Startup Culture|

Conversations at work don’t necessarily have to be all business, all the time, to be valuable. The company mandate to keep non-work related conversations to a minimum is now outdated, and people are changing the way they think about socialization in the workplace. It’s become something to be embraced rather than discouraged. So what makes workplace socialization so important?

Two employees take a break to chat in the office while sitting on a Campfire Half Lounge and a Campfire Ottoman
A Campfire Half Lounge and Campfire Ottoman create a perfect place for two people to have a one-on-one conversation.

Promote Wellness

Humans are social creatures and even the biggest introvert needs social interaction to thrive. Studies have shown that people with strong social support networks have a reduced risk of health problems like blood pressure and depression. But when that social support exists in the workplace, it can also inspire better work. A study by Gallup found that people who report having a best friend at work were 37% more likely to say that someone at work encourages their professional development.

Socialization is also very helpful in keeping stress under control. Over time, high stress levels can lead to burnout, illness, and absenteeism. Plus, no one does their best work when they feel overwhelmed. But when people feel like they can count on their coworkers when things get tough, they can handle stress much easier. The Gallup study found that employees who have friends at work are more likely to have healthier levels of stress management even though they’re experiencing the same levels of stress.

Foster Company Culture

A strong team is one of the most valuable assets a company can have, but sometimes, trying to organize team building activities can feel forced or awkward. Instead, designing offices to encourage socialization gives people a chance to get to know each other in a natural way. Design a company cafe with a large table or island in your office. This is a great place for teammates to have informal conversations in a naturally social setting.

Two employees socialize in an office lounge with Jenny Round Low chairs.Comfortable seating helps put people at ease and encourages casual conversation. This lounge features Jenny Round Low Chairs and a Campfire Skate Table.

Increase Loyalty & Engagement

People highly value their friendships and allowing those social connections to be built can be a very powerful way to improve company loyalty. There may be other companies to work for, but friends cannot be replaced. People who have a strong social network at work are less likely to look for other job opportunities, be more satisfied with their current job, and more engaged at work.

Employees socialize in an office lounge with Campfire lounge seating, a Buoy, and Campfire ottomans.Informal lounges are excellent for socialization. Here, Campfire Big and Half Lounges are used with Buoy and Campfire Ottomans to provide a range of seating options. Also shown with a Campfire Big Lamp, Campfire Paper Table, and Campfire Slim Tables.

Improve Productivity

Casual conversations might not seem helpful at improving productivity, but it’s natural for informal conversations to turn back to work. Often, talking with a coworker at lunch or while getting some coffee can spark new ideas or solve a problem. Also, since socialization is so important for employee wellness, it in turn helps people be more productive and produce higher-quality work.

Let’s get social. Browse Turnstone products to find furniture that can help create social areas around the office. For more help planning your space, contact us to schedule a call with our design team. Once we learn more about your space, we’ll be able to find a solution that works for you.