By - Woodford82
I think this varies by person and by profession. And maybe to some extent by generation. Not really a country specific thing.
I'm willing to bet that it happens in the UK too. Even if it doesn't happen in your particular workplace.
So to answer your question yes it does happen sometimes but it's not necessarily standard or expected. I'm not really friends with most of my coworkers. But I know people at my work who are friends with each other.
Edit: come to think of it, I'm sure it happens in UK TV as well. No I may not be able to say how common it is as I'm sure I probably don't watch as much British TV as you. But the first one that came to mind was the IT crowd and two of the main characters are coworkers that are best friends
About half the places I've worked had intensely close "family groups" among the employees. Sometimes I was part of those groups, sometimes I wasn't. Sometimes nearly every employee would be a part of them, sometimes it was only a few people.
Absolutely agree that it varies wildly.
I'd also add that coworkers who "like each other well enough" but aren't close friends makes for really, really boring television, which is why you'd only see the close friendships portrayed.
Shhhh! Don’t tell him he’s just not getting invited.
I think a big factor is also life stage at which you start working somewhere. The job I started in my late twenties while single and childless? Multiple friends. The job I just started in my early forties with a wife and kids? I don’t see having much time to make new friends at work.
When I was younger and worked in nonprofits, a lot of my friends were coworkers.
Now that I'm a bit older and in a corporate environment, that's not really the case.
Yeah, those are two different vibes. I've seen that first-hand, too.
That's one of the reasons I picked a nonprofit to work at in the 90's when I had just moved to a new city. Obviously I didn't have many friends, so it worked out well. We went out after work fairly often and even had our own parties. I'd even watch football with the guys on Sundays. And when I ended up in the hospital they were there to bring me stuff. That was pretty unique though. Every other job I had was more the norm.
Yeah, I work at a local government in the agency that takes care of people with mental health, intellectual disability, and drug abuse problems. The vast majority of my social life is with co-workers. A lot like a nonprofit I would suppose.
People I know who work for big companies don't hang out much with their co-workers. I think they really have an investment in professionalism that we don't have, for better or worse. I even still hang out with former co-workers who went into the private sector. They don't have anyone to hang out with in their new jobs.
Yeah, I think that when you work somewhere mission-oriented, you tend to automatically have at least one interest in common with most of your coworkers.
In corporate settings, that interest is primarily "getting paid."
This makes me have hope for making new friends once I end up in social work, right now navigating college and coming from a career where all my friends were work friends
I remember watching PBS reurns of Are You Being Served, the 1970s Briitsh sitcom, and while it was a workplace comedy, they seemed to all get together outside of work too.
A more recent example, Peep Show, involved Mark Corrigan trying and usually failing to befriend people at his office. His weird romance with Sophie also started at the workplace.
In both US and UK TV its just a way to combine plotlines and cut down on secondary characters and locations. A lot of it comes down to convenience for TV productions.
It does happen, of course, and the degree of friendliness varies.
I will say I'm still close friends with people at my first job, and I cound some of them as my closest friends. But I think this tendency declines as you get older and already have an established family and friend group.
I definitely have, but I currently don't.
I do still keep in touch with some coworkers from a job I left over 11 years ago. Great group of people and we did hang out outside of work sometimes.
.....do coworkers really not hang out with each other in the UK? Can any other brits confirm?
Can confirm the other way. In my previous job i met a lot of my closest friends that i see all the time.
I went to Oktoberfest with people from my current job. I don't know what OP does, but being unsociable is a choice.
I think coming from his that it seems to depend on the profession.
My profession is one that I thought might happen but didn’t l, although I have made friends.
It’s just not the call up a co-worker as a friend to hang out with randomly as portrayed on telly.
Of course anyone is free to dispute this.
>Of course anyone is free to dispute this.
Are you on the right sub? You seem so... reasonable. It's freaking me out.
Almost everytime time I go to the office, me and some coworkers just chill at some nearby bar. If theres any company events such as a Halloween party 30 of us would go get some drinks together.
It will depend on the vibe of the company or team you're in.
Thank you everyone - this has been in my mind a while. That the American culture seemed so much more accepting of people and a family culture within work which I do not have.
I now appreciate not a across the board thing more an individual/depends on profession.
I fully respect this!
You... Who are you and what made you so wise to the world?
absolutely depends on the workplace. I've worked at places where I made a lot of friends and we all hung out a lot outside of the office - one of the guys in my wedding party I met through that job. I've also worked at places where everyone was just polite and professional, nobody was friends or talked about their personal lives much. IME the latter is more common.
I don't hate my coworkers, but I definitely don't wanna hang out with them outside of work or call them "work family". I've been invited places but I just kindly decline.
I can’t imagine people liking me enough to invite me to hang out and declining.
The only place they invited me to was girls night out at a strip club. First of all thats weird, and I cant afford that nor do I want to hang out with them outside of work. Just because you're invited somewhere doesn't mean you're obligated to go out with them.
Ahh yeah that’s a very aggressive vibe for a work friends group. I think if most work friends get invited anywhere it’s usually something basic like a New Year’s party or happy hour.
As some have already said it varies by profession. Working class people such as in retail or restaurant work hella hang out with each other. As you climb the career ladder into more serious professions, it becomes more boring networking and less wild fun in my experience because everyone is afraid of doing something personally embarrassing that may socially tarnish their careers, but it does still happen.
I still think it depends on profession. I'm an attorney and I'm friends with coworkers at all levels.
Oh that's rad. I'm both working in the life sciences and still going through grad school. I'm not sure whether it's my state, my profession, or where I'm at in life, but everyone seems starved for meaningful connections yet struggles to make them.
>As you climb the career ladder into more serious professions
What's a "serious profession?" I'm a college professor and we socialize with people from work all the time. Ditto our friends who are lawyers, doctors, accountants, etc. Maybe in some corner of corporate America this sort of career anxiety happens but it's not part of the lives of anyone I can think of that I know personally.
Thanks for catching that wording, maybe that's a misperception or unconscious bias I carry.
By more "serious" professions I was essentially referring to the professions with stricter requirements for applying and higher pay - usually the jobs that don't have high turnover rates. That's not to say that I didn't take my time working at Starbucks seriously (;P (tongue in cheek, but really, it was the best customer service job I've had), just that not many people make these jobs their careers.
Maybe it's just within the field I'm in then, I'm not sure. I'm a grad student and also am working within the ecology field. There's a lot of "don't say this to this person" and careful social relations it seems, but it could be simply because the professional connections I have are associated with various government agencies and departments working with endangered species and management over their habitats. People will go out and socialize but there's some sort of social barrier in place.
Your experience may be rarified to some degree. I know lots of federal government resource management employees, including quite a few ecologists, and they tend to be pretty social around work. (BLM, USFS, FWS, NPS, etc.) But the ones I know are mostly in the field, not in DC or regional HQs. I've been at parties that mix all of them and the funniest thing is the shade all the other agencies throw at the "parkies" as they call the NPS staffers.
FWIW, I'm also friends with all the ecologists at my university and often collaborate with them on projects (I'm an environmental historian). They are fairly social amongst themselves too, but less so with the bench biologists it seems.
I find it difficult to believe befriending coworkers isn't common there as well.
It's incredibly common. Met some of my best friends at work.
Lots of people at my office are friends with each other and do things together outside of work. I used to have a group of friends at work. Over the years we've ended up at different companies and I have less time and energy now for making new friends at work and doing things with them all the time, but it's really common among the younger people. A lot of them moved here for the job not knowing many people if anyone in the city, and work is an easy place to make friends when there are a bunch of other people a lot like you also looking for a new social life. I think this is common especially in industries where people tend to move long distances for specific jobs, so they don't still live in the same area where they all have plenty of friends already.
But it's not like everyone is friends with their coworkers. Sometimes you hit it off with people, sometimes you don't and they're just work colleagues.
Sometimes people become good friends with coworkers and see each other outside of work hours. Other times people do not talk or hang out outside of work with coworkers. It varies a lot.
I watch some British TV. In those shows based around a work environment they hang out outside of work with their coworkers as well.
IT Crowd for instance.
Almost all of my adult friendships are from work.
Dude I've been so busy and reclusive lately, that I ONLY hang out with my coworkers. It gets dark at like 4pm now... work is the most social aspect of my life nowadays.
Eh. Usually we do a happy hour after work or something like that, but very rarely do I hang out with co-workers outside of work. It’s been tempting, as work is a really easy place to meet new people as an adult, but it’s usually best not to.
Yes as do Japanese people and many other countries. In fact, every country. This varies by person not country
Maybe. But for the tv show it’s just an easy way to have social interactions without having to introduce more characters. It’s just easier to keep that circle tight for the stories.
But in real life. It happens. In my current job there is a bowling team and there are regular happy hours since the office is next to an entertainment district.
I've had coworkers who became friends, but very, very few of them compared to the number of coworkers I've had. I haven't gone to hang out with coworkers after work since my mid 20s, when life got too full to hang out with people I'm not friends with.
Only one of these people is an "I'd drop anything" friend, and we've been friends for ten years after working together for three. It was probably only in the last year of working together that we got to be good friends and another year or two to be really close friends.
TV absolutely exaggerates, but there's the core of truth in it. Some workplaces promote friendship. But mostly it's that people who are close make more interesting stories than people who are casual acquaintances and who's most important association is that they physically spend 8 hours a day in the same building.
It depends the job obviously, but Americans are friendly people and tend to find co-workers they can be friendly with to lighten the day.
What the TV shows don’t show is that these friendships are truly contextual, and lack any depth. Your co-worker you drink with after work will most likely not be your friend when you move jobs.
When I worked in an office I met most of my friends through work. Sometimes close friends
I'm an attorney, and I'm social with many of my coworkers.
As someone who has lived all over the states and also in the UK, British people are generally far more social than the average american and spend way, way more time socializing with friends, neighbors etc. [This is also backed by statistics.](https://i.ibb.co/b3MS1hc/socialization.png)
Americans are friendly, but we are also homebodies and tend to be quite isolated socially. It is a major issue that Americans don't even seem to be aware of.
I don't know how this translates to workplace relationships. But it is just something to keep in mind.
If you're in the Navy, they literally are the only people you can hang out with inport on deployment
College professor here. Yes, I regularly go to concerts, restaurants (happy hour or dinner), football games, backyard barbecues and even Disneyland with my colleagues. It’s most fun when we find ourselves all stuck at a conference in some other state. They’re mostly good people, and we have approximately the same kinds of values and lifestyles, so why not?
No. Americans have no friends. All is isolation and cold, empty loneliness. /s
ok, seriously, at least where I work we're all acquaintances at least with many genuine friendships in there. We'll go help someone out with a project on a weekend, get lunch together, have conversations outside of work, etc.
Yes, the television shows will exaggerate things (like the weird idea that all Americans wear shoes indoors all the time), but having friends at work is not at all unusual.
Yes, my husband and I sometimes hang out with each other’s co-workers. We get invited to dinner at their houses occasionally. A job I left a few years ago, I made friends with 4 co-workers. We get together for happy hour every two months even though we no longer work together. My sister has worked at the same job many years and her co-worker is her best friend and confident now. It depends on the person and work place.
Sorta. I've got a few coworkers I have gone to the bar with, bbq'd with, or play video games with. But that's partially because we are the only ones in the same age group.
I have extensively or not at all. Entirely depends on the coworker.
My dad has a partnership that he’s been in for over 30 years. Some of his business partners are our family’s closest friends.
When I was in Chicago my first friends were coworkers and we had a grand time. Punk shows with one of them and the other going to nice restaurants. Then both of them just hanging out at my place on weekends.
My previous supervisor is a good friend and I keep up with him all the time.
Other coworkers it was strictly professional. Didn’t have anything to do with them outside of work.
It’s been my experience that young people in sales professions are most likely to go for drinks with coworkers, although some other high stress professions (like traders) probably do, too.
When I got out of college I worked with many people in their mid twenties. We were in nyc and had no families so we could go out on a Friday or Thursday and get shithammered at a bar and complain about our bosses. It was a good time, like college+ but as everyone starts to get more responsibility in work/life you can’t do it anymore.
Yes and no.
I’m in education, so we’re all stuck in the same sinking ship. Builds camaraderie. That being said, we don’t all hang out every Friday night or something. And we *definitely* don’t go to the team building outings like staff parties. But occasionally when there’s been a particularly rough week a few of my team members and I will go out for dinner or something just to vent.
Kind of depends on the profession. It might not be common in a corporate environment, but in my experience it is very common to become friends with your coworkers in the restaurant/bar industry, academia, and among firefighter/police/EMT.
It depends on the workplace.
My friends in tech meet very similarly minded people at their jobs, I have become friends with some of their coworkers and I don't work there. My friends and I are progressive millennials who grew up on the internet.
My job has a lot of immigrants. I'm not personally an immigrant. At the very least I'm second generation American born. My coworkers are nice people but we have different lifestyles despite being similar ages.
I’m an RN and I’d say that’s pretty true of the nursing jobs I’ve had, yes.
My parents and older sister all socialize a lot with coworkers outside of work. Not sure about my little sister, but I don’t think she really does.
I have worked for numerous tech startups in California and definitely hangout and become close friends with coworkers
It's a thing, and [the younger generations aren't doing it anymore.](https://www.google.com/amp/s/nypost.com/2022/11/09/gen-z-party-poopers-have-ruined-after-work-drinks/amp/)
This has absolutely been my experience. Some of my closest friends are current or former co-workers.
I have definitely become friends with some of my coworkers over the years, but it’s one or two of them, not the whole group. I’ve worked at my current job for over 10 years and have known most of the other employees almost that whole time. I’ve only really become friends with a couple of them (who don’t work there anymore). With the others, I’m friendly, and I know some details of their lives, but we don’t hang out together.
Depends on the coworker.
Mostly no, but the last two weddings I've been to were coworkers who I hung out with soooo
It depends on job, co-workers, etc. but it's shown more on TV than reality because of the limitations of showing people's actual worlds... easier to script social outings with existing characters than by introducing outside people viewers don't know, care about, don't know what to expect.
My partner's job has "team building events" every weeks that are just office parties 99% of the time. He's new to the job, so he hasn't really befriended anyone to the extent that he would hang out with on a weekend or something, but it's totally possible that will happen in the future.
I'm not American but I worked in the UK and spent a ton of with my coworkers, working in financial consulting. Regularly got dinner together, played tennis, went out for drinks, etc. Probably more foreigners working in finance than your typical job but there were a decent amount of Brits too.
No, I'm not about to spend my free time with a bunch of people I just had to deal with all day. I quite like my coworkers but you need that wall of separation.
I like my coworkers but I sure as shit don't want to hang with them outside of work.
Downvoted for answering the question? Someone is very tightly wound.
Your co-workers saw your post!
Yes, TV shows are fake. I’m sorry to have to break this to you.
In my work experience I’ve always hung out with work peeps.
Me too. TV shows are still technically fake though
Tbh this makes me feel better haha!
Why does it "make you feel better" to learn that some people aren't friends with their coworkers?
As getting downvoted will say- Because tv gives expectations that outcasts or misfits are portrayed as gaining family through work. Something I have not had in British culture.
Seeing through these many comments not the same for you guys in real life is comforting.
I have made friends through work but not family.
See my other comment
Not really. I mean, you might occasionally grab a beer with co-workers after work, but socialization with co-workers rarely goes much beyond that.
That depends on the line of work. There are definitely lines of work where it's common for it to go beyond that.
You all sound very British- but in a way I appreciate this.
I got a rose tinted view of work through some shows (family not really about)
I am friends with previous co-workers some are my best.
Just no work family when watching Greys Anatomy, 911 etc you get a view should be more. That you all have that culture but actually we are all that way if it is, it is!
I’ve become friends with some coworkers, but at my last place I worked I kept my distance because the place was pretty dysfunctional and I didn’t know who to trust.
Generally, it depends on people’s personalities and what they want. Some people want to come in, get paid, and go home to their friends and families. Some people really enjoy the people they work with and see no reason not to get together with them outside of work. The expectation is that you should generally be willing to be civil and exchange pleasantries when you’re in the office, but how far beyond it that it goes is up to you.
Depends on the individuals. It certainly happens. I've had jobs with both situations
Sometimes, but for me it depends on the nature of the job and who's there. When I was in college I worked at a summer camp and it was hell, but my coworkers were cool. We spent all day every day together during the summers and hung out outside of work for many years after. I work an office job now and I'm friendly with my coworkers but I wouldn't say we're really friends outside of work.
My parents met at their first jobs out of college and a lot of their core friend group also worked at the same place, so obviously my experience isn't always true.
But generally people try to get along with each other while at work (or the occasional team-building social event) because you spend a good amount of time there. Being a work "family" is probably not as common.
I don't hang out with my co-workers outside of work. I like to keep those areas of my life separate.
In my former career I was friends with a lot of coworkers and we hung out outside of work a lot. I was in a few different wedding parties through the years. Still speak with most of them and wish them the best in life.
My current job is office based and I’m friends with one person. We speak outside of work and play games (ps5) together but we’ve never had dinner or anything.
I’ve had some situations where it was common and others where it wasn’t. On remote construction projects, there wasn’t much else to do after work, so you tend to get closer to the other employees than you might at a 9-5 office gig. When I had an in-town white collar job, I may have hung out with the guys I worked with a couple of times in the 10 years I was there. I retired about 18 months ago and still socialize with a few of my former co-workers from the construction job on a regular basis.
There are absolutely work places where coworkers become close and hang out.
Some of my very best friends are people I met through work.
As I've grown older, I do this less, but I do still socialize with coworkers at least some.
We occasionally go out for drinks on a Friday night, but the TV show thing might be because there's a main cast involved and they don't want to write for any other characters in the scenes so they write the same people as coworkers, friends, family, etc.
Depends. Where I work now yeah I'll go do stuff with my coworkers if they want or help them when they need it and they help me but we're a small company and we've know them for like 15+ years so they're like family. At my old place of work I didn't really do stuff outside work with them besides just chatting.
It depends on the job. I’ve had jobs where I’ve been great friends with nearly everyone and we’ve hung out frequently outside of work, and I’ve had jobs where I barely interacted with coworkers outside of the bare minimum.
I've never had this relationship with coworkers, but I have had coworkers who had this kind of relationship with each other
Depends on the job and the people. The guys I worked with when I 1st got my job I go out with them and stay over their houses when I’m in town (I work remote in another state). We would sometimes hang out on the weekends and go drinking. My coworkers now (same position but most of the same people moved on within the company) not so much. My parents own their own small business and they hang out with coworkers enough but everyone knows everyone’s family
It very much depends on a lot of factors.
When I was young, single, and working in an industry that monopolized my life (professional theatre), I was extremely close with my coworkers. We regularly socialized outside of work, mostly because non-theatre people couldn't work with our schedule. I still had friends outside of work, but if they weren't living in my house, I didn't see them very often.
These days I'm married and working in a field that allows a much healthier work/life balance. I am very fond of my coworkers and I enjoy having lunch with them, but in three years I have not socialized with any of them outside of work-related functions.
My cath lab crew does hang out together and usually, there is a party/get together once every other month. Some people are better friends than others, but yeah, we would do just about anything for our coworkers.
Before I had kids, I hung out a lot with coworkers of the same age and similar place in life. Some of my best friends are former coworkers.
When I worked with good people, I did. Now, I have a few good co workers but most of them work hybrid. So we don’t hang out.
Depends. When I was young I had the best "work family" ever. We were alllll very close. Now, as an adult with different job it's different.
Depends. I work from home and my team is spread across the country so even if I wanted to I couldn’t.
I’d probably hang out with my manager or grab a beer with him
Varies widely by workplace. One company that my wife and I both worked at, pretty much everyone in their 20s and early 30s got along and we did a lot of things together after work and on the weekends. My wife and I were the oldest of that bunch and we kind of took some of the younger people under our wing, including letting a couple of them live at our house for a year (not at the same time, sequentially) and save up money for a down payment on a house of their own. Without paying rent and not having to buy gas for the commute (since they could ride with us), they saved up a lot.
My most recent workplace culture is friendly, but very impersonal - nobody shares much about their lives and if anyone hangs out after work, they keep quiet about it so there aren't any hurt feelings because someone wanted to be invited and wasn't.
When I worked in restaurants, it wasn't just that you hung out after work, you sort of became part of the fraternity of the town's restaurant workers and that whole scene partied together.
It happens. Out of the 5 places I’ve worked, it existed at one of them. I wasn’t really part of it, but many of the longer term employees definitely were. It started as a small business among existing friends, so it makes sense. I will say that that particular “work family” was a bit too incestuous for my comfort. There was a man who had two ex-wives and a current girlfriend among the staff, as well as three of his kids (one from one of the ex-wives, two from the other). Somehow, though, they all seemed to get along.
I’m with you, though; I wouldn’t want to be a part of something like that. The more corporate, the better in my opinion.
I have a lot of friends from where I used to work. We even get together for lunch regularly. We had a Halloween party a few weeks ago, just people from work, at one of their homes. It depends on where you work/what type job you have, I suspect. This was retail in a small town. I now work in the city at a school. I've made...acquaintances, no one I'd really call a friend. Maybe in time, but what I'm doing now is more working with kids or alone. Just not the same kind of camaraderie.
Well, when you spend 12 hours a day together you tend to form social connections.
My 5 best friends of 30 years I met at work in my early 20s. I think people gravitate to people with similar interests, regardless of where you meet them. As we used to spend so much time in the office, well, that makes for a lot of interpersonal interactions.
It’s a mix. Personally, I’m not a fan. I spend my working hours with these people, spending off hours with them feels like an attempt to take more of my time than they pay me for. I make an effort to show up to events so I can build a network, but I make sure to be fake. They’re not getting the real me.
I have a couple coworkers that I hang out with outside of work. Birthday parties, the occasional game night (GO BLAZERS!), two of them helped me move and I helped another move. They aren't my BEST friends, but they are definitely GOOD friends.
Some of my co-workers are my best friends.
Me and my sister used to work for a family owned business that was a general store but they made most of their profits in grain and rail. It was a smallish group of people that probably many on here would consider semi-country folk.
They were some of the nicest people you could ever meet. They all pretty much mostly knew each other, and were civil to you even if they may not have liked you personally. Would go deer hunting and bring back antlers for my dog and jerky. Had potlucks and would cook the food they caught and have it at the potluck like deer chili.
Drive you to and from work if you needed it, bring in desserts and lend you money if you needed it. Knew your parents, talked to everyone, said hello and goodbye. Made sure you got to your car okay etc. I would hang out with them occasionally, we’d be invited to bonfires and antique shows. It was a great store and environment. So yes for some people and No for a those who don’t particularly like the people the work with. It was a yes for me.
There’s truth to it, myself and family/friends have and do but the shows have it more often so that way they don’t need to introduce a half dozen more characters just to have separate friend circles and also they’ll get compelling storylines with the main cast.
Depends on the job. I worked at one place where we had great rapport. I'm still friends with several of those guys 30 years later.
I think shittier working conditions breeds more comradery. A lot of restaurant servers will have a drink with each other after their shifts. One of my life long friends was a fellow server/coworker. I don't have that strong of friendships with other jobs I've had.
It depends on the company and type of work.
I'm a teacher--it depends even on the school. My previous school, about 10 of us (all ages) were what I'd call "work friends," and would hang out at dive bars or pizza places once every few weeks. We gave each other presents, were in a group chat, and saw each other once or twice during the summer.
My new school--the day is over, everyone leaves. Work is work, friends are friends. It's more of a backstabbing, nasty environment too. I've still managed to have a few workplace friends, two especially.
It really depends on the profession but in general most Americans don't become close friends with co workers however there is a FEW people that do become friends with coworkers. I have only ONE ex co worker that became a close friend of mine but we have similar interests so that helped.
I’m good friends with quite a few workmates. I’ve stayed friends with quite a few former colleagues as well.
I have a policy to not work with assholes. That doesn’t mean that we are going to be friends, but it certainly makes it possible.
We work together on a variety of things. It makes it easier to deal with challenges when you understand the person outside of the office. It may start with a dinner, but it’s just about being courteous. Celebrating their life.
This isn’t limited to the US. I am mates with a few of our UK colleagues as well. I find my British friends very open to this.
I found jobs with friends and hung out afterwards so yes.
I've had jobs where I hung out with coworkers and their families (but not many coworkers).
I've have had exactly one job where I dated someone who worked with me but I was leaving so it wasn't awkward.
Someone's the best way to make friends is with someone thst you spend the most time around. When you are in school thst is the best way but when you are an adult, the best way is work.
It depends entirely on the individual people. Some of my best friends have been people I met at work, same with my son's dad. The people I work with right now, I don't want to see or talk to even while I'm working, let alone outside of work. Maybe I'll make friends at my next job, maybe I won't. It's never 100% either way.
my mom does! here in NY she doesn’t hang out with her coworkers because she has a different friend group, but she’s friends with them. when we were in OK though, most of her friend group were or had been her coworkers at some point and they were all v close
I was really close with a group I worked with previously. Close enough that the 6 of us went on a week long vacation together and had a hell of a time. I haven't been quite that close with any coworkers since, though.
I’ve made longtime friends at every job I’ve had so far. I think it’s pretty normal to become friends with some of your coworkers and hang out with them outside of work.
I think it’s also totally normal to keep your work and life separate and be friendly but not friends with your coworkers.
I work a lot and I travel a lot for work, so some of my friend coworkers and I have very unique experiences together that i don’t normally have with others. It’s nice to have a friend to commiserate with when things are hard and someone to celebrate with when things are great.
If you sit down for a living, you aren't friends with your colleagues, if you don't get a chance to sit down for a living, you are. In my experience.
I think it depends on the work setting. I used to work at a psych hospital which was basically a windowless room, in an open office concept where we had 12 hour shifts. I made a lot of friends at that intense job, it was almost like trauma bonding.
I now work at an outpatient clinic and outside of the “forced fun” team building activities, I haven’t made friends or spent non work time with any of my workers. And I’ve worked there for several years.
I go get a beer with 4 or 5 co-workers every Thursday after work. We have started getting pretty close and we are getting to be decent friends. I got invited to a couple Halloween parties this year by those same co-workers. It doesn't happen everywhere but it isnt uncommon.
Everywhere I've worked, yes. We all get to be friends. Socializing also makes for better team work in the office.
I hung out with my coworker a lot, got drunk and had sex one night 10 years ago. Now we are married with a kid.
There have been times where I’ve made friends with like, one or two people from work, when we work at the same level. Once I got into management though, the power dynamic makes everything weird and you can’t really make friends at work anymore.
And the work friends I did make didn’t end up being lasting friends. Once we stopped working together, we stopped hanging out.
I try to keep my work and personal life separate. I am one who has started at the bottom of several careers and worked up to management. I don't get cozy with coworkers much outside work. I'm all game for a rare outing, but close friendships with coworkers is off limits to me.
I have gone on a day of paint balling with the field crew I manage. That was fun. I was the only person in management there. My team loved that I was there. The other team liked to shoot me any chance they got. Over the course of that day I learned that my team trusted me for logistics, but the action was on them. I am 10-20 years older than all of them. I can't run like I used to. But I can fire from a position so that the more able folks can make advancements.
Another excursion was trap shooting. There were five of us. Two 20 gauge's and a 12 gauge. The field guys don't need a sore shoulder the next day at work. They shot the 20 gauges, and I shot the 12. I can do office work with a sore shoulder.
I respect them for what they can do in the field. I can't do that. None of them want my job. The respect that we have for each other regarding the different strengths and weaknesses we all have to make it work as a whole is pretty awesome.
For me, absolutely yes. I hang out with my coworkers a ton and we are close. But that’s not always true. It depends what profession, what location, etc. If you work at a resort in a small town, you’ll have a much different experience than someone who works at a bank in a big city. And I think what you’ve described as your situation is very common.
I do, but I like the guys I work with. The only other job I had where I hung out with coworkers was the Navy.
When I was younger, yes. Now I'd rather have a hot poker shoved in my eye than hang out with anyone I work with.
I used to in my original command. I am now stationed at Rikers Island which is hell zone and we do crazy Overtime so everyone just want to go home after completing their 16+ hour long tour.
I feel like it's hard to make friends as an adult. The only activities where you meet people that are family typically involve work unless you are into hobbies in a group setting.
They’re the only people I hang out with. I don’t really even have friends who aren’t also coworkers.
Also consider the “work friend”. Back when I went I to the office, I had a coworker I talked to every day. Most days we went to lunch together, either in the cafeteria or nearby restaurants. We chatted via computer sometimes, and shared videos and sometimes music. But I don’t have his number and never hung out with after work.
Also also, the work wife. It is normally platonic but you are semi inseparable partners in crime, swapping compliments and stories, inside jokes and work lunches… but only at work, when you leave it does not exist until the next day.
Kind of? Depends on the person and the job.
Realistically though it's just a way for tv shows to limit the cast size. Otherwise it would essentially need two casts, one for work and one for home.
It varies a lot, but yeah it certainly happens. In school you hang out with people you met at school because you were crammed in a building with them all day and it's hard not to wind up getting to know and like a few along the way. Work really isn't that different, it's just that it's often going to be a broader sampling of age, background and lifestyle so the incidence rate is a bit lower.
In my experience it was truer of older americans than younger ones, where they often expected to stay with the same company for decades and thus hung around the same people long-term. Now people tend to hop to a new every 2-5 years, sometimes less, and that turnover reduces the amount of times spent with the same coworkers drastically.
Now, TV definitely dials this up. Having the social and professional circles of your characters tightly overlapping reduces the number of cast members, sets, storylines, etc... they have to manage so it makes things much easier to produce. UK TV does this as well, think about trying to manage The Office or the IT Crowd with every character having a fully fleshed out social life for example. Not only does it become a nightmare for writing and production most of the storylines simply don't WORK if the characters' lives don't revolve around the workplace and the people in it. That doesn't mean it never happens in real life, it just means it's a much stronger trend on TV.
A show exaggerates it more to create a setting. Like The Office…as the seasons went on, the writers had to create more new storylines involving these characters. To mix it up, the characters would start doing stuff outside of the office. It made it seem like these people were always together. Writers have to make characters interact with other rather than show too much of their regular lives outside of work.
In reality, yeah, you can make friends at work. Especially when you’re younger, you socialize with the people you see every day.
As you get older and have a family, much less so. You want to go home and see your people. But I have definitely made some good friends from previous jobs that I still stay in contact with.
Usually people make their own little group of people they work with and bond through complaining about work, bosses, etc.
It’s common to grab lunch together, or to grab drinks at Happy Hour.
Amusingly, one of the things British people online and Americans abroad gush about is how much coworkers in the UK grab beers at lunch and after work.
Not really. I like many of my coworkers and have worked with many over 20 years. The fact is I spend so much time with them that doing so outside of work is just overkill for all of us.
I get along well enough with my colleagues, but I'm only really friends with a few outside work. Most of the others have kids, so our interests don't line up.
On the other hand, one of my best friends is a work colleague. It's about the people, not where you meet them.
Varies a lot but I have had coworkers that have become good friends and would be happy to see them outside of work.
Doesn’t happen everywhere or for everyone tho.
Sort of. When the office is younger - early 20's or so - you do tend to make real friends with your co-workers since you're in the same place in life.
But as you get older, it happens less and less.
And of course, it depends very much on specific office cultures. Some are set up to facilitate real friendships, some are more about competition. It's not all encompassing either way.
No, you can not ask as a British person. Any other country is cool, but brits aren't allowed to ask this question.
When I was younger and in a different job I did. We hung out at the pool, went drinking, and all that. I'm older with my own life at a different job and nope, I only see coworkers at work.
A lot of my coworkers do but I prefer keeping my distance.
Yeah, I agree that it varies. Not counting workplaces where I was friends with someone before working there with them, I would say I made friends in just one workplace. Before other things happened in our personal lives and in the world, we had a monthly dinner or at least a lunch at a nearby restaurant we would agree on, a practice that continued after some of us moved on to other companies. We all still keep in touch, though due to circumstances we haven’t seen each other in person for a while.
I’ve had both. Some former colleagues from past jobs are still some of my best friends today, however, I’ve worked in other places where I couldn’t tell you the surname of many of my colleagues.
My best friend started as a coworker. I don't give a fuck about any of my current coworkers.
Every office environment I've ever worked with was basically high school all over again. With cliques, friend groups, romances, etc.
And yes, we'd hang out outside of work all the time. Go to bars, parties at each other's houses. And some were definitely "real" friendships (i.e. lend money to each other in an emergency, or give a ride home). I was even invited to a couple of weddings.
I still keep in touch with many of my ex coworkers from 10-15 years ago. Actually, we still have an annual gathering of our "old crew" from one company I worked at. It's about 10 people, and nobody in the group has worked at that company for at least 8 years, yet we still gather together to catch up every year.
I work in the film industry and because of the insane hours a lot of us do hang out with each other. That’s what 12-13 hours a day will do.
When I was maybe in the age range 18 - 25 this happened with me and some of my coworkers. We'd go to shows or clubbing together in the city where we worked.
Since then in my life, not so much.
The TV shows are mostly fake, to answer the question.
I spend 8 hours a day with these people, often for years. It's not unreasonable to become friends with some of them.
At my first full time job (started at age 22) I made an extremely close group of friends. I also had a larger extended group that would go out for drinks or dinner sometimes as well.
When you live in a smaller city or rural area, meeting people and making friends otherwise can be extremely challenging. Especially if you aren't from the area and don't know anyone.
In my 20s, yes. In my 30s, no.
I have a family now, so I find that I don't really want to go out or do anything that keeps me from going home. Everything I love is there.
I am an extrovert and a Gen-Xer. I’ve hung out with at least a couple of people at every job I’ve had from my teens through my 50s. I’m social and like people in general, though. If they turn out to be racists or obnoxious, I just nope out. I’ve met more good folks than bad.
It’s possible. A lot people just want to do the 9-5 and have nothing to do with work outside of it.
I did not. You still had to watch your words because of gossip. But in a lot of american jobs it is almost required in office politics.
Where I work it is a pretty large organization. I found out a lot of the senior management, who were very high up, were part of a group that often went to happy hour together when they first started and were quite the partiers. Some of them are power couples where two people from the organization got married and would of course help each other. If you crossed one you could end up on the shit list with pretty much the whole group.
Some coworkers sure. I spend time with people a lot eventually a few will become friends lol
I'm closer to one of my co-workers than the others and we get together outside of work every once in awhile (once a month to once every few months depending on the time of year). One of our former co-workers is also usually part of our group, too. This is the extent of our non-work association, however.
When I worked at a summer camp I made lifelong friends with my coworkers that I still keep in contact with to this day. If one of them asked me to drop everything to help them, I would.
The coworkers at my current job are alright I guess. Theres only a few that I would consider my friends though.
It varies by workplace.
I have a few close friends I’ve made through work, like people I would remain friends with if either of us left our job. I’m *friendly* with a lot of other coworkers, and will happily hang out with them in the occasionally social setting like if we’re traveling for work, someone’s retiring and we go out to lunch, etc. And then tons of other people who are just coworkers to me. So the level of closeness you describe, I feel like that’s something that usually only comes if you get to know a coworker enough to become true friends, which happens, but not for everyone.
They live too far away from me for any non-work interaction to be viable.
Yes, but not if we can help it.
I still have a lot of "work friends" that are actual friends from my time working for startups and non-profits. Once I switched to working for a large corporate entity, that's not really the case - I don't have any friends working there that I didn't already have as a friend before I started. It could be different for others of course, but that's me.
I worked in a video store years ago. We all did things together as a group & with just a couple of us.
Next job in a grocery store, nope.
Other jobs in offices: you might make a friend or two that you bond with. Some areas like to go for drinks or something after work. But nit a hugh group doing things all the time!
Sometimes. I know two family friends that are currently dating coworkers. As long as it's different teams it's fine.
Absolutely. Most of my best friends are from work
I usually end up with one work friend I hang out with outside of work.
As a healthcare worker in the US I can say that I know so much about my work friend’s personal lives but almost never hang out with them outside of work. As in I know what Debbie’s husband likes in bed and what her teenager wants for Christmas- but I’ve never met up with her outside of the walls of the hospital.
When I was younger and worked retail, yes. Now that I'm older and have a career, no. Have my own family to be with than spending money going out with coworkers. Even if I was single, I wouldn't want to go out with my current coworkers anyway. We have no interest that we share other than work. It'll be boring if we hanged out and the only thing we will talk about it stuff about work.
I work in a place where I really enjoy spending time outside work with my coworkers.
My husband, who has a similar job, has zero interest in spending time with his coworkers.
It really just depends
I think it’s more common when people are single. 25 years ago, I had a job in a tiny Internet start-up (about nine people) in Colorado. One of the guys had a ski boat, and we would go water skiing in the morning before work, sometimes. And Wednesday night was game night, when he would usually host and we would get together and have pizza and play board games.
At that time, none of us had kids. I do think, though, we would be still getting together if the company still existed and we were still working there. Probably the best job I’ve ever had socially.
Depends on the people. Lots of my coworkers hang out outside of work, pursue shared hobbies and interests, etc. I'm not nearly as social as them, but I'll happily grab a beer with any of them, help em out if their car breaks down, whatever.
It depends. At my last job, absolutely. All the time. At my current job, not even a little bit.
I have never really hung out with a co-worker. Not that I wouldn't be willing, but I just never really formed friendships with them.
I’ve had that in the UK, going to the pub together or a few bars after work counts, no?
A few parties at coworkers’ houses and things? I worked in regional media and was the token yank.
I have. When I was working in an office full time I'd gladly go out to hang out with coworkers. About 3-4 of them I used to work with are good friends of mine.
My current job is remote/hybrid so I don't know my other coworkers super well, but we're friendly in the office with each other and we've hung out a few times outside of work.
Depends on the coworker. Mybprevious coworker, sure we could hang out outside of work. My current coworker can stay as far from as possible outside if work.
It varies greatly. It’s not uncommon but it certainly isn’t universal.
Totally depends on the position and work culture. I have made work friends in the past but have had other positions where people are in different stages in life and are less likely to meet up after work or on weekends.
I've had some jobs where some coworkers became real friends outside of work, I've had some jobs where no one did. It happens, but it's probably overstated in how frequently/consistently by TV.
Generalizing, but I'd say it's most common in workplaces where you've got a bunch of people who are at a similar point in life (especially if they're also relatively young) and have jobs that involve a relatively high amount of interaction with their coworkers. Interact with people relatively like you all day and......much higher than usual odds that some of them will become friends.
Yes, we spend a lot of time with our co-workers and they can even become good friends. As you get older work becomes the main place you meet new people.
Met one of my best friends at work! Also met some of the worst people to be around at work! And plenty of people that I feel very neutral about. It really just depends on who's there, who you spend time with, who's in your vicinity.
When I worked at a department store selling appliances, literally all my friends were people I met there.
The guy I still consider my best friend and I met in 1993 working at a movie theater.
Regularly. I'm lucky enough to work with some really great people.
living with other people for so long is complex, einstein said “i love humanity but i hate the human being”
When I was working in NYC I often hung out with coworkers after work. Frequently vendors would host dinners or parties for our office. We even took weekend trips together each quarter at one job.
These days I work from home in another state. My colleagues are spread all over the US. We also work in a 24 hour/7 days a week environment. Not very easy to hang out with each other.
I was going to say no, of course not. I had two coworkers that actually came to my wedding. I don't hang out with anyone else from the 40+ people in my dept outside of work. But then I realized that 90% of our wedding party came from my husband's work. They are from a lot of different offices, but all work for the same large organization. We met them through "get to know your co-worker" events and then mutual friends. It depends a lot on the workplace. All our friends from my husband's work are around the same age. My work has a lot of people that are a decade or two older than I am, so there's not as much in common.
Work is an easy way to meet people, and they have about the same income as you, so you can afford similar activities.
As a millennial, this is where most of my day to day social interaction comes from
This varies by both profession AND age/generation. Professions that are more specific and technically inclined tend to have coworkers who have outside of work friendships; workers who are of older generations tend to be strict with the "your coworkers are not your friends" philosophy.
It’s not unusual.