Meet Angus, our four-legged colleague.
Thanks to Angus and his predecessors in our Canine Morale Unit, we’re among the 8% of companies in the UK (1) that allow office dogs.
I’m not joking when I say that Angus is an essential part of the Draw team. Here are some reasons why. Maybe you can use them to convince your colleagues to make a furry new hire.
1. Dog = smiles
Nobody can walk into our office, see Angus’s squished little face, and not smile.
Numerous psychological studies have shown that pets reduce anxiety, stress and blood pressure levels. The International Journal of Workplace Health Management conducted research into 75 staff members and found stress levels of employees in an office with a dog are significantly lower than those without.
This matters because our work related stress levels are at an all time high in the UK. Worryingly, in 2018 almost 7 out of 10 Brits are losing sleep because of stress. Anxiety and comfort eating are also on the rise, while productivity seems to be going down. (2)
Not only does having an office dog reduce stress levels. It boosts job satisfaction and perceptions of organisational support. (3)
2. Smiles = increased productivity + creativity = happy clients
Reduced stress levels nurture creativity and productivity in workers.
No wonder giants like Amazon, Google, Airbnb and Nestlé allow four legged colleagues in their offices.
Nestle’s well-established PAW (Pets at Work) programme for dogs sets the gold standard. Each dog goes through a ‘pawthorisation’ process which involves questionnaires about the dog’s personality administered by a dog specialist. At the end of the process, the dog receives a ‘passpawt’. (1)
According to Nestlé employees, the workplace atmosphere is much friendlier since the introduction of PaW. One employee even commented that their office dog has helped them negotiate better deals over Skype by simply showing their face on the screen. (1)
3. Dogs get you up on your feet
Some experts think that all the sitting we do in the modern workplace is so dangerous that it’s become the “new smoking”.
A recent poll of 2,000 office workers in England showed that 46% of us sit down for 4-6 hours, and 25% sit for 7-8 hours, per day. Sitting for prolonged periods of time like this has been linked to obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cancer (4). Standing, even for a little bit can stave off these difficulties, but remembering to isn't always easy.
With a dog in the office, though, you’ll have all the motivation you need to take a break to play a little game or get some fresh air on a walk to the park.
Angus is basically a less (or more) fancy Apple watch Stand Reminder.
5. A dog is a natural ice breaker
Whether it’s us getting to know our neighbour company through our mutual love of office dogs, or colleagues that don’t often work together being able to bond during some Angus play time. There’s no ice breaker quite like a ball of fur running around with a wagging tail.
A 2012 study from Central Michigan University found that an office dog or two has been proven to improve trust and camaraderie between colleagues (5), which in turn results in a great work environment.
6. Last but not least: comedic value
Angus’s man spreading is a well documented occurrence, and his underbite is something you can’t un-see. But we love him for it.
Previous Furry colleagues
Esme the Teacup
Lena the Chinese sausage dog
Angus talks about his day-to-day life in the Draw offices.