Lonely at Work? You’re Not Alone

isolated at workA piece on Fortune caught our eye. That’s because it examines the impact of being lonely at work. We’ve been there done, that in a former role in an office where everyone’s heads were buried in their cubicles. All. Day. Long.

Not only was it not enjoyable, it wasn’t productive! A recent study proves it. As cited in the piece, in 2011 two professors discovered that greater employee loneliness resulted in “poorer task, team role and relational performance.” Plus, loneliness at work actually triggers emotional withdrawal from the organization itself.

It sounds like companies have been attempting to address this issue, so says Steven Miranda, managing director at Cornell University’s Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies. Per the piece, Gallup measures the most important factor in employee engagement: Whether or not someone has a best friend at work.

This is hitting companies most in their wallet. That is, if someone is unhappy and resigns, all of the time and money, says Miranda, that’s been invested in this employee is going-going-gone.

The second way it’s hitting employers is in the excitement realm. Miranda says when you walk into the office in the morning, it’s either one scenario or the other. You’re either excited to be there or you’re wondering how fast five o’clock can arrive.

He points out in the piece, “I would bet my bottom dollar that people who are lonely and disengaged at work deliver far less discretionary effort than people who have a support system or a go-to person [at work].”