friendships at Workplace is a difficult topic, which is not only inherent in various studies, but also in the frequency of the interview requests that we receive for ZEIT or MAXI, for example. Especially for beginners Executives dealing with the subject correctly is important.

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The job as a complex social network

A job is a complex social network and determines a lot about your life. He also has a lot to do with your colleagues because you can only work in teams and collaborate with your friends.

Employees can be great for each other Society because everyone has something that is of interest to their peers. But not every colleague has such a good relationship with his colleagues. But not every colleague is a really good friend.

New Work: Positiv or Negative?

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Friendships at work are therefore still viewed with mixed feelings - not only in Germany: On the one hand, studies show that working with friends is good for the working atmosphere and makes you more productive.

Such a study at the American Columbia University, which showed that colleagues who liked each other and helped each other were far more productive than those who stubbornly went about their business. Therefore, start-ups in particular are promoting the New Work common leisure activities such as holidays, sports and parties.

Cooperation creates closeness

If two People Working together day in, day out, sharing their interactions and conversations fast become confidential. The workplace can be a source of great friendship and learning for those who make the time. It is so unbelievable how much you get to know people through professional life and yet so rarely make friends.

This aspect is particularly important for younger people: one of the reasons why many people feel comfortable in their job is that they share their experiences and thoughts with and from others Feedback and thus also benefit from the job on an interpersonal level. By the way, this is an aspect that many in the home office miss.

When friendships for life emerge at work

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Working together also serves to understand colleagues and get to know their personalities. After all, all are one Team and work together from the beginning to the end of a project and should understand each other well. Friendships for life are formed quickly, especially in risky professions. It is all the more important that you build up your personal relationship step by step.

Especially those who are just starting a new job have them Choice between two job situations that are very different. On the one hand, the new job is interesting and you have some friends there, or you may have colleagues in another job who you know well. I have now been interviewed several times in the press on exactly this topic.

Leisure - better not with colleagues?

On the other hand, the mixing of professional and privacy accompanied with a lot of skepticism - not always without reason. Of all people SalesDirector of Google, which played a key role in starting this trend, is not playing the game, as she stated in an interview. In this context, I found the statement of the Google Sales Director Fionnuala Meehan, She explained to me in an interview in Dublin:

That's why I don't spend my free time with colleagues. It's important to me that I have another life besides Google and, for example, every day at 18 p.m. with mine Family eat dinner. So 16 or 17 p.m. is the end of the day for me. I don't work at all on weekends.

Studies show: Dear job and private separate

The Gallup Institute, for example, found out in a survey of around five million employees that 30 percent of employees have a so-called best friend at work Office have. More than half of them, namely 56 percent, are fully engaged at work.

Of the remaining 70 percent, only eight percent were enthusiastic about their job, 63 percent did the job to rule and 29 percent even failed negative statements about their job. A survey by also shows that a good third of all employees keep their private life and job strictly separate.

What benefits do friends bring to work?

The connection between friendly feelings, working atmosphere and increased performance is evident: those who get along well with their colleagues have more Fun and is therefore more productive. The job also helps many, but not themselves lonely zu feel.

The older you get, the harder it is to feel like you know people, and the easier it is to feel like you don't really know people. It's hard living with distant friends and family in Contact and even more so to keep up to date with what people are doing, who they are dating, if they are happy and - even worse - what they think of you. It is therefore easier for many people to concentrate on the people they deal with every day, including their own colleagues, when it comes to social life.

The risks of office friendships

Nevertheless, caution is sometimes called for - because you can choose friends, colleagues not. As soon as the relationship and factual levels mix, conflicts can arise.

It becomes problematic, for example, if the one wants more than a collegial relationship, but the other does not. Or if Tischnachber likes to tell piquant details from his private life, which one would rather not hear. As most people want a harmonious day of work, they are unsure whether they can put such colleagues in the way.

And what problems arise?

Another problem is envy, which is the result of a sudden career of fellow colleagues - and the other does not. Or when private information is misused to gain a professional advantage.

Depending on the intensity of the relationship, such negative feelings should also be addressed, because to a certain extent you are one of those Behavior normal. In a normal working relationship, on the other hand, a factual one is enough Conversation about the new situation.

Is a knit separation of private life and work day meaningful?

But it is not the other way around useful, to strictly separate private life and everyday working life. Apart from the fact that this is becoming increasingly rare these days, it is almost impossible to avoid conflicts in the long run. On the contrary, anyone who strictly avoids private contacts is soon considered unsympathetic and marginalizes themselves, which also damages their career in the long run.

And when you have a good friendship, it's easy to keep it going. And even if it doesn't work, you can always try again. Friendships with coworkers are like any other kind of friendship. Knowing what to do and how to do it is half the battle.

Creating social balance to working life

And there is one more aspect to consider: Today, thanks to the flexible forms of work, you have frequent location and Job change less and less opportunity to establish and maintain intensive private relationships outside of work. Also, you inevitably talk more about what you spend your day doing, work. If you don't create a balance, you will get big ones if you lose your job Problems.

I'm just thinking of Robindro Ullah, former Head of HR South at Deutsche Bahn and later Head of Employer Branding and HR Communication at Voith AG, who confessed in an interview and a statement that one cannot separate personal and professional life - and not just since social media.

10 Tips for dealing with friendships at the workplace

Friendships in the workplace can make working easier, but can also lead to conflicts. 10 tips for proper handling.

  1. No avoidance attitude: Humans are social beings - also and especially at work. It therefore does not do anything to exclude private things in the job
  2. To draw boundaries: Not every person is sympathetic to one another and one does not have to exchange with each person private details. Make it clear where your limits lie.
  3. Talking openly about problems: There is potential for conflict in every human relationship. Talk openly about your problems and try to solve them that way.
  4. Don't blaspheme: Even if it seems tempting, blaspheming about the boss with colleagues who are friends could be eye-catching.
  5. Social contacts outside: Even if it is difficult: Take care also of social contacts outside their jobs. Otherwise, your friendships will be lost when you lose your job.
  6. Do not be distracted: Here is a chat, as a coffee: Even if you work with friends, the job should not be a chat hour - otherwise there is trouble with the boss.
  7. Distinctive distance: Distinguish between real friends and friendly colleagues. Private contacts are ok, but some things you should also keep to yourself with good friends.
  8. What the boss says: Employers can neither ask nor forbid private contacts at the workplace.
  9. Beware of flirtatiousness: when the line of privacy is crossed, love is not far. Many employers do not like to see this because of the potential for conflict.
  10. Social networks: Pay attention to what you reveal about your work on social networks such as Twitter or Xing - especially if the boss is also one of your friends. But: especially Facebook can be set so that not everyone notices everything.

Conclusion: When it comes to friendships between colleagues, trust is what counts

Because even if it can have a positive effect on work when colleagues get along well: You have to ME too clear make sure that not every office or internet friend is a really good friend.

To sum up, the transition from collaboration to friendship is fraught with challenges, but the results are well worth it.

Many examples also show that a good work culture can be a strong basis for future business activities. It's about trust and closeness and about getting something off the ground together.

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