This is the third post in our series about how staff relationships help treaters remain hopeful and energetic.

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Is Social Support Important for Our Work?


Research by Gallup, Inc. Has repeatedly shown that social support is a primary factor is workplace satisfaction. How much does your workplace value enhancing social support? Do we act deliberately to provide time and resources for social connection? Do we make the most of the opportunities we already have? Do we put “supports others” in our job descriptions, evaluate people on it, praise people when they do it well? Do we consider that employee relationships are something that gets in the way of work, or that they are the necessary foundation of our work?

Here are a few of the components of social support at work:

  • Laughter
  • Hope
  • Shared values
  • Helping each other with tasks
  • Help in crisis situations
  • Encouraging creativity
  • Listening
  • Getting to know each other’s preferences, styles and strengths
  • Celebrating milestones
  • Acknowledging good work and extra effort
  • Sharing pain and sadness
  • Sharing resources
  • Struggling together
  • Responding cheerfully to requests

And I could go on…

What would you add?

We have both formal and informal social structures, from meetings to gatherings at the water cooler. Think about what opportunities there are at your work place. Which ones are supportive? Which ones are not? How do people at your work support each other after crisis or negative events?

Click here to download a worksheet to use with your team to look at how you can enhance the social support you give each other. Let me know in comments what you discover.


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