Let’s be friends! Why good colleagues motivate us and tie us to the company.

By Helena Pumberger, 06.02.2024

Employees working full-time spend around 1,700 hours in the office every year. That’s quite a lot of time at our place of work. So, it’s no wonder that interpersonal contact, such as our relationship with our colleagues, is so critical to job satisfaction.

The number 1 motivator is sitting next to us.

They solve tricky Excel problems, provide Post-its and highlighters if we need them, and keep us company during breaks too. A working day can be long and exhausting – our colleagues are our immediate social contacts during this time. So, the importance of getting along well goes without saying. But new survey findings reveal that these social contacts are in fact the top motivation booster in a job. According to a study by the Manpower Group, a good working relationship with colleagues and superiors is ranked number one among the top motivations for a job, at 46%. If there is a positive atmosphere in the team, this has a direct impact on the work ethic. Finally, 24% of respondents said that frequently working as part of a team and together with colleagues was important to them. Almost one in three stressed that it is equally essential to have a good rapport away from the actual work. If instead the mood in the team is frosty, not only does the motivation decrease during work, but the willingness to change jobs also increases.

Joint activities foster team spirit.

What does this mean? If employees are to be retained by a company for the long term, the human factor must not be ignored. Team-building measures such as excursions, after-work activities or employee involvement in decision-making processes, but also a bit of informal chatting, make the atmosphere more relaxed and can ensure a good team spirit.

It is important to note that not every single colleague has to become a really close friend. Sometimes it is also about reaching a compromise on an objective level where there are conflicting goals and interests in order to maintain harmony within the company. If you want to get along well with others, you should above all become the colleague you would like to have yourself. This means showing honest interest, being respectful of others and spreading a positive mood. Being too distant, on the other hand, is counter-productive because we like to surround ourselves with people who care about us.

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