Productivity 101: The Benefits of Having Dogs in the Office
If you love four-legged animals, then you know how hard it is to leave them behind when you’re heading out the door to go to work. They cry as you get in your vehicle and watch you drive away until they can’t see you anymore. The process itself is really heartbreaking not only for the animal but for the pet owner who sits at their desk all day thinking about their four-legged animal as well.
This could be why companies are now changing some of their policies. There is no denying that pets in the work environment are becoming a growing trend in today’s work industry. It hasn’t been widely accepted by everyone yet, though participating businesses will oftentimes invite and welcome employee’s pets for things like charity events and fundraisers to help support a cause.
In acknowledgment of this trend, and the fact that dog owners love spending time with their four-legged friend to improve their relationship, many supervisors of outdoor restaurants, coffee shops, hotels, and bars along with other venues, have started relaxing their policies regarding dogs entering their establishment.
So, if you’re thinking about dropping subtle hints to your supervisor to let you bring your beloved dog with you to work, do your best to reassure them about their decision. If your job is concerned about things like allergies or fleas, make sure you have a plan to address these concerns. That way, employers can provide alternatives for individuals who are allergic to certain animals, and pet owners can stop fleas before they start. The last thing anyone wants are fleas attacking them while they’re trying to work.
With that in mind, here are some reasons for supervisors to support your request:
Dogs Can Decrease High Turnover Rate:
Employee turnover rate can be a huge problem for any business, especially if they took the time to hire someone, train them, and set up benefit plans only for the person to leave shortly thereafter. Fortunately, by allowing pets in the office, employees can be encouraged to stick around much longer. That’s because this can become an attractive feature for employees who are dog lovers.
The best part is, this can also be used as a recruiting tool for potential new hires. Seeing someone at a desk with their dog right next to them says a lot about the company, and it’s the non-verbal communication that speaks the loudest when it comes to hiring potential candidates.
They Can Improve Physical Fitness:
You don’t have to go very far to see that we’ve become a society of sitters. We sit when we eat; we sit when we travel; we sit when we’re home; and we sit when we’re working. With all this sitting, it’s no wonder why employees experience so many health problems later on down the road.
Luckily, bringing your pet to work not only increases productivity, it also increases physical health. How? By taking them out for walks. Having to take your dog out for a walk a few times a day gives employees a chance to work their muscles and helps them refocus for the rest of the day. Going on walks outside the office environment can also help strengthen the bond between you and your best friend, which is what every dog owner ultimately wants. Right?
Help Improve the Company’s Image:
Although there are a number of ways to promote businesses, allowing dogs in the office environment can increase a customer’s perception of your organization. That being said, can you think of a time you saw an angry customer interacting with a dog? The chances of witnessing this are slim to none. That’s because most buyers have a positive reaction when they’re given the chance to interact with an employee’s dog, which can help them relax and enjoy the visit to the office.
Allowing pets in the office can also help soften an organization’s image and make the company seem more people-friendly and progressive.
Lowers Stress Levels from Work:
Having pets — specifically dogs — in the office can help reduce stress and make employees feel a lot more comfortable in their working environment. This can not only lead to fewer turnovers, it can also lead to higher productivity.
A 2012 study conducted by the International Journal of Workplace Health Management discovered that employees who brought their beloved dogs with them to work on the regular basis experienced a decrease in stress levels, compared to those who didn’t. As a matter of fact, the study also suggested that those who didn’t bring their pets to work showed signs of higher stress levels throughout the workday, which decreased their performance levels as well.
With all that being said, when customers and employees interact with dogs, the environment becomes overwhelmingly positive. That’s because dogs – like most animals — offer employees the opportunity to increase their performance while creating a comfortable environment for them to be a part of. Furthermore, the benefits of having dogs in the workplace are impressive, and once a company feels comfortable with their pet policies, they rarely cancel the opportunity given to employees.
H. Davis enjoys being active and finds any excuse to go outside and play with his dog Blitz. If you can’t catch him online, you might be able to catch him working out at the gym, or cheering on the Boise State Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at @Davis241. Thanks!