It has long been suggested that Man's best friend may make a positive difference in the workplace by reducing stress and making the job more satisfying for other employees, but according to a Virginia Commonwealth University study, this now may be FACT.
Stress is a major contributor to employee absenteeism, morale and burnout and results in significant loss of productivity and resources. But a preliminary study, published in the March issue of the International Journal of Workplace Health Management, found that dogs in the workplace may buffer the impact of stress during the workday for their owners and make the job more satisfying for those with whom they come into contact.
The Virginia Commonwealth University researchers compared employees who bring their dogs to work, employees who do not bring their dogs to work and employees without pets in the areas of stress, job satisfaction, organizational commitment and support.
"Although preliminary, this study provides the first quantitative study of the effects of employees' pet dogs in the workplace setting on employee stress, job satisfaction, support and commitment," said principal investigator Randolph T. Barker, Ph.D., professor of management in the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business.
"Dogs in the workplace can make a positive difference," he said. "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."
The study took place at Replacements, Ltd., a service-
The researchers did not observe a difference between the three employee groups on stress hormone levels, which was measured via a saliva sample, in the morning, but during the course of the work day, self-
According to Barker, the team observed unique dog-
Barker said that other findings revealed mostly positive comments from employees such as "pets in the workplace can be a great bonus for employee morale …,"having dogs here is great stress relief" and "dogs are positive; dogs increase co-
"The effect of pets in reducing the impact of stress and enhancing communication found in other settings may extend to the workplace," said Barker.
"Pet presence may serve as a low-
According to Barker, further research with larger sample sizes within the organizational setting is needed to replicate the findings of this initial study.
Randolph Barker collaborated with Janet S. Knisely, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry in the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine; Sandra B. Barker, Ph.D., professor of psychiatry in the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine; Rachel K. Cobb, Ph.D., research faculty in the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Nursing; and Christine M. Schubert, Ph.D., assistant professor of biostatistics at the Air Force Institute of Technology.
The study was supported in part by the Virginia Commonwealth University Center on Human-
REAL BENEFITS OF TAKING YOUR DOG TO THE OFFICE....
May be proven?
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