On average full-time workers in the UK spend 37 hours per week at work, and therefore with their colleagues, or are they friends? This is what commercial property consultants Pall Mall Estates have been surveying the UK public to discover whether our co-workers are actually our friends.

According to this survey the majority of UK workers enjoy spending time with colleagues to get to know them better, however, they do not want this time eating into their weekends or evenings. The majority of people opt, to socialise over lunch and for 14% of women this entails catching up on office gossip.

It would seem that women are more sociable than men, especially those aged 35-44 and after a pay rise! That’s right, 42% of people admitted to socialising to get a pay rise whilst 21% socialise in hope of a promotion. With 57% of those in the highest, pay bracket more likely to spend time with colleagues this strategy may just work.

Whilst the majority of us do like to socialise 33% of respondents would prefer not to speak to those they dislike. 20% of people surveyed never socialise and one of the main factors for this is social anxiety. Those most likely to report this are males aged 18-24, but industry also has an effect on this.

Those who work in processing, manufacturing or construction are more likely to socialise with colleagues, than those working in the military, property development, or legal services.

The survey results suggest that while we enjoy spending time with colleagues only 31% of us see co-workers as friends. Meaning that the focus for socialising is either for a pay rise, promotion, or just some free food and drink at the annual Christmas party.

It is still important to communicate with colleagues, as this can have positive effects on the mind, body, and soul, especially when working with the individuals for so long each week.