Want to Increase Productivity? Take Your Dog to Work
Are you looking at your productivity and thinking of ways to give it a push? If you are already hitting cake days and dress down or up Fridays, how about letting the dog earn its keep? You don’t have to offer him any executive role just a blanket to sleep on in a corner. All the dog has to do is turn up looking cute to remotivate and recharge your staff. Forget cracking the whip for better productivity. Let the dogs in and reach targets.
Even if you don’t own the company, bringing your dog to work helps improve productivity. There are many studies confirming how productivity decreases when too much time is spent focusing on the same project. A pet in the office encourages quick mental brain breaks to think about something totally different.
The distraction created by a dog helps recharge emotional batteries. People describe how the dog being with them at work increases their job satisfaction and research proves allowing it reduces and relieves stress and absenteeism and increases motivation. In short, staff like being at work and therefore work harder.
Spending the day with you at work will only suit dogs with a calm friendly temperament. If you are a business owner, it helps if you have a clear policy and guidelines staff can follow to avoid any confusion about what is and is not allowed.
Additional Benefits of Having Dogs in the Office
Virginia Commonwealth University found that having a dog around at work can reduce stress levels significantly. They reached this conclusion after examining saliva samples of employees. The lab results showed that people who had a dog around had low cortisol levels compared to people without.
Many experts believe that stroking a dog whilst working or not not only reduces cortisol levels but it also triggers the release of oxytocin, the hormone responsible for making you feel relaxed and happy. If you’re not feeling so well as your stress levels rise giving your dog some fuss or taking him out will calm you down.
With or without a dog, people feel less stress when they are able to take occasional short breaks. Taking your pet out is a good excuse to take a breather until you start thinking straight again. Even five minutes out the office boosts your mood and reinvigorates you enough to reach the goals you’ve set for the day.
Along with reducing stress levels, a dog helps calm nerves. a quick play creates a sense of well-being in both of you, and having your dog happy makes you feel better about yourself.
Another benefit of a dog at work is that it provides a topic of conversation. This can be beneficial if you’ve just joined the company. Dogs owners know dogs are great ice breakers.
Choosing the Right Pet
Many behavioral psychologists back having a bring your dog to work day but you get the same benefits from bringing your cat. Cats have the same kind of positive effects creativity and productivity and reduce stress levels just like dogs.
Other than dogs and cats, there are pocket pets like hamsters and gerbils that can even live at work. Hamsters prefer being on their own and are active for only short intervals during the day, which makes it an event when you see them. Although a hamster won’t need walking they do need a home over the holidays. Gerbils are equally low maintenance. You need a pair. They are much more active and become very tame with handling. With either, make sure you keep them metal escape-proof cages. These guys are escape artists that can chew through plastic bottomed cages overnight.
Fish have long been popular as stress relievers, which is why so many dentists have fish bowls or marine fish tanks in waiting rooms. Psychologists believe watching fish has similar effects to watching the flames in an open fire.
Perhaps it’s the novelty of having a creature around who doesn’t give two hoots about what’s happening with your work but it’s hard to deny a visit from any pet boosts office morale. Permission to bring your dog to work could be the closest you get to maternity or paternity leave if you get a puppy.
Other Tips for Dogs in the Workplace
If you’re bringing your dog to the workplace, you need to be aware of your colleagues’ needs as well as the needs of your dog. Obviously your dog should be very well socialized and obedient as well confident enough to settle and sleep in new places or work will never get done. Your dog may also need something independent to do when you’re busy so have a good quality hide chew handy. It’s also obvious that any pets should be clean and free of bad odors, ticks and fleas. As a health and safety precaution, employers may also insist vaccinations and worming are up to date.
There’s a lot of research on the benefits of keeping pets and often more unusual characters make the news. There are people taking all kinds of animals to work from penguins to iguanas. Apparently, it’s not just having the cute and furry in the office that creates a buzz to push productivity.