Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Dogs at Work are better than none?

Dogs have always been off limits in offices, as defined by societal norms and sanitation reasons. However, recent studies suggest that having dogs around at work reduces stress levels as the daily grind takes its course.

A study organized by the Virginia Commonwealth University considered the productivity and stress levels of office employees, and revealed that having dogs at work translates to better work quality and high job satisfaction levels.

Conducted in Replacements Ltd (a service-manufacturing-retail organization based in North Carolina, USA), the said company implements dog-friendly policies like Zynga, Ben & Jerry’s and Amazon, with some 20 to 30 dogs roving around the office.

The study ran for one work week period, with study subjects undergoing saliva samples and surveys geared to identify and measure stress levels. The results conclude that having dogs around the office is less stressful for workers, and even a precursor for better camaraderie between co-workers and employees.

“Dogs in the workplace can make a positive difference”, shares Randolph Barker, Head Researcher. “The differences in perceived stress between days the dog was present and absent were significant. The employees as a whole had higher job satisfaction than industry norms.”

As studies have previously linked dogs and good health, the investment of having a dog allows for more walking and exercise for dogs and dog owners. Studies related to interaction have also shown how beneficial having dogs can be.

The new study adds a new plus side in having dogs around, suggesting that dogs can also be productivity reinforces, helping people cope with the stresses at work just by being around.

As man’s best friend, it can be said that something like this is only to be expected.

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