Five Things You Need to Know About Loneliness and Isolation at Work - American Society of Employers - Linda Olejniczak

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Five Things You Need to Know About Loneliness and Isolation at Work

According to a recent research survey of more than 2,000 global workers and interviews with over 50 global leaders by Ryan Jenkins, workplace loneliness expert, addressing workplace loneliness boils down to the following five things.

  1. Loneliness is not the absence of people but the absence of connection – Someone can be in a crowded office and still experience loneliness. Conversely, a solo remote worker can be fully engaged in their work and not feel lonely. To reduce loneliness, workers need to feel connected to the work or organization, their team, and their manager.
  2. Loneliness is impacting your team – According to the research, 72% of global workers said they experience loneliness monthly, with 55% saying weekly. It's not a matter of if your team is experiencing loneliness but how many are experiencing the negative impacts of loneliness.
  3. Loneliness is hindering worker performance – Loneliness is an unaddressed productivity killer that is incapacitating many teams. Loneliness lies at the intersection of inclusion and well-being. Decreasing workplace loneliness boosts workers' health, engagement, performance, and loyalty.
  4. Loneliness isn't shameful; it's a signal – Just like hunger informs us it's time to eat, feeling lonely is our biological cue to seek connection. It's a signal that we belong together. It's a universal human condition. One of the most fertile places to foster more connection and belonging is at the place where we spend most of our waking hours – work.
  5. Loneliness can be easily reduced when you know what to do – Loneliness is increasing. What increases can also decrease. Research proves that simple pro-social behaviors can reduce loneliness. Befriending just one person at work or a positive 40 second interaction. Spending five minutes before a virtual meeting to share something personal. These are just a few examples of how swiftly loneliness can be lessened. Creating environments where people feel seen and heard is the nemesis of loneliness.

Creating a more connectable workplace is within reach.  Let's seize it together. For more information visit LessLonely.com.

Join fellow ASE members at our next Peer-to-Peer Discussion on July 21st – Employee Retention Strategies. Learn more and register here.

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