The importance of social support at the workplace
Social support at the workplace is an important aspect of a strong team. When we trust one another we can create a sense of trust and togetherness and contribute to a positive culture at work.
A culture of social support at the place of work is beneficial to the works and to the workplace itself. The more supported the workers feel, the more involved and satisfied they will be on the job and the more proactive.
Social support is linked with a decrease in absenteeism among workers. Researchers have found that social support is also linked with good mental health and good physical health. It was found that support mitigates stress and depression.
One can assume that the benefits of social support are felt when one is in receipt of such support – that is, when a worker is helped by another worker they will experience the benefit. This makes sense. However, research shows that the act of providing social support is as important, if not more, than receiving it. When we help someone we feel content, and when we are content at work we are more productive, more creative and more involved. It gives us an aim and we feel that we are actively contributing to the success of our colleagues.
Maybe the only obstacle to giving social support is lack of time – we always have much more to do than time to do it in So, when someone asks us for help, or asks for a favour, we may be tempted to say no. However, interesting new research shows that when we dedicate time to others we feel that we have more time to do what we have to do. When people dedicated time to others, not only did they feel that they had more time to do what they had to do, they also reported that they had more time to themselves.
All this then means that it is worthwhile doing what needs to be done to create a culture where people not only wish to help but are happy to help others. After all, this will be to everyone’s benefit – the employee who offers a helping hand, the employee who receives the help and the place of work itself.