Leadership

Why having friends at work is so crucial for your success

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Yoshikazu Tsuno | Getty Images

Having friends at work is not only key to your personal happiness, but it's vital for having a successful career. In fact, it makes you seven times more likely to be engaged in your job.

A new survey by job site Comparably found that of over 33,000 workers across the tech industry, more than half of them report having best friends at work.

While 60 percent of women said they have a close friend at work, 56 percent of men admitted having work BFFs as well.

"One of the most important things to have in the workplace is a close relationship," Comparably CEO Jason Nazar tells CNBC Make It. "So very often the largest source of stress for people is a boss, co-worker or the day-to-day pressures of work."

"The fact that more than half of employees we surveyed have a best friend at work is a good sign," Nazar adds. "Having someone there to go through the good times and bad experiences with you is invaluable."

Though men and women generally have close friends at about equal rates, the percentage varies depending on your job role, level of work experience and your age.

People in entry-level jobs are the least likely to say they have a best friend at work (53 percent), while 60 percent of those with one to six years of experience were most likely to say they did have one. To that point, tech executives, HR and business development employees report having thriving friendships.

Interestingly, Comparably also found that the likelihood of having a best friend at work declines with age.

Gen Zers and millennials — those between the age of 18 and 30 — reported the highest percentage of workplace friendships (62 percent), while people in their early-to-mid 50s reported the lowest rates (50 percent).

The reason behind this decline, Comparably explains, is presumably because as people age, they hold higher job titles with dramatically increased responsibilities at work and in life. As a result, they have less time for socializing and creating close social relationships at work. People who are still working in their 60s reportedly experience an uptick in friendships because they have reached the pinnacle of their careers before retirement.

Even if you find yourself in a role where it may be more difficult or o form and maintain friendships, happiness expert and Fortune 500 adviser Annie McKee recommends that you "find someone who you can really talk with, who can really tell you the truth about what they see in you, whether it's the strengths or some developmental areas they see in you."

Having a close friend or two at work will help in the long run.

"Connecting with people boosts our mood and our morale, and friendships provide us with the emotional and psychological strength to deal with whatever comes our way — whether an exciting opportunity, a challenge or a crisis," McKee says.

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