It’s well known that dogs can help their owners to create close, long-term relationships with others.
And there is an increasing amount of research to back up this view.
The key benefits of dogs at work?
One study by Virginia Commonwealth University found that workers leaving their pets at home experienced much higher stress than those who were able to bring their pets into the office. In particular, employees who had pets at work exhibited an 11% drop in stress levels compared to a 70 % hike in the stress levels of those whose this pets stayed at home.
Another study, by researchers at Central Michigan University, found that dogs can help with relationships at work as well. According to the research, having a dog in the office increased interpersonal bonds – in particular in one experiment, they discovered that those members of the test group who had a dog with them, rated their colleagues more highly in terms of closeness, trust and team cohesion.
According to Stephen Colarelli, a psychologists at the University, there are three great reasons for bringing dogs into the workplace.
1. dogs lower stress, as well as your heart rate and blood pressure
2. people are seen as more friendly and approachable with a dog in the office.
3. it apparently increases cooperation between team members
Do we practice what we preach? Of course we do. The firm’s founding partner, Tim Bonallack, was rarely seen without a dog in his office in Amesbury. Current Bonallack and Bishop senior partner, Tim Bishop has done the same – often bringing a family labrador [see Rosie, above] to work – and for the best part of the year, our lease extension team had the joy of a gorgeous labrador puppy sitting quietly in his cage in the corner of the room – though he occasionally popped out to say hello to visitors, kept in his room by a baby gate!
The conclusion – don’t worry about those expensive team building sessions – take your dog to the office instead. You would be barking mad not to.