By Rhonda Abrams
ENTREPRENEURS AND small-business owners
often lead the way in bringing their dogs—and
allowing employees to bring their dogs—to work.
I’ve been bringing my shelter-adopted dog with me
to work for the past 15 years.
What are the advantages of having a dog-friendly work environment?
• Helps in recruiting talented employees. I list
“dog-friendly office” in every help-wanted ad. I
find that I attract talented people who are
delighted to bring their own dogs to the office or
want to work in an atmosphere where dogs are
allowed. That’s why you’ll see lots of dogs at leading companies such as Google and Amazon.com.
• Helps in retaining employees. Bringing a dog to
work is an incredible perk. Once people can take
their canine companions to work, it takes a long
time before they’ll give that up.
• Improves morale. Dogs make almost everyone
happier. Getting down on the floor to play with a
dog, petting a dog or just seeing a well-behaved
dog across the room lightens the mood.
• Makes it easier to stay late. Employees don’t
have to worry about rushing home to walk or
feed their pets.
• Creates connections. Dogs make it easier for
employees to connect with one another and to
communicate. It gets people up from their desks
24 ;e Costco Connection OCTOBER 2012
The Costco Connection
Most Costco warehouses carry a variety of dog
and cat food and treats, along with dog beds and
learn a great deal
from their pets
for doggie breaks from time to time.
• Helps save dogs. More people are able to adopt
rescue dogs if they can bring their dogs to work.
You can help make that possible. (For more on
shelter adoptions, see the sidebar.)
Moreover, there’s a lot that you—as an entrepreneur—can learn about being a successful business owner from your friendly canine.
• Loyalty. Canines invented loyalty. If they ran
businesses, they’d be loyal to their employees—
recognizing they depend on these people for success. They’d also be loyal to their customers,
making sure they really take care of them.
• Patience. People make mistakes; businesses suffer setbacks. In business, you have to learn to take
the long view and practice patience.
• Acceptance. Humans put a lot of emphasis on
superficial things, such as how people look or the
clothes they wear. Dogs look for what’s inside.
• Perseverance. Dogs can play fetch for hours and
hours. It takes persistence to get ahead.
• Gratitude. Dogs let you know when you’ve made
them happy. Try it. When employees do something good, let them know.
Get a dog. Dogs make great business companions. You can talk over your problems and ideas in
complete confidence, or take a walk and meet
potential customers. Dogs restore your confidence
and support you through thick and thin. C
Costco member Rhonda Abrams is CEO of The
Planning Shop. Register for her free business-tips
www.PlanningShop.com or follow
her on Twitter (@RhondaAbrams).
Fido for you
WITH ALL OF the good
things pets do for their
stress and helping to lower
cholesterol and obesity—isn’t
it only fair to do something
nice in return?
If you’re looking for a pet,
one of the best ways to get
the relationship off to a good
start is to rescue an animal
from a shelter or turn to a
To remind prospective
pet owners of the healthy
and loving shelter dogs of
all ages and breeds that
are looking for their forever
homes, the Humane Society
of the United States website
features information for
The site reminds would-be pet owners that bringing
a pet into your life takes more
than finding a reputable
source. It’s an important decision that requires careful
thought and research. The
site has a section dedicated
to helping someone decide
whether he or she would
make a good pet owner, and,
if so, what kind of pet is the
Essentially, the site is a
one-stop source for step-by-step guidance for making the
right decision about choosing
a suitable pet and acquiring
it from a humane, responsible
source.—Stephanie E. Ponder
DO YOU BRING YOUR DOG TO
WORK or work for a boss who
allows pets in the workplace?
Let us hear from you. Send your
please put the word “Pets” in the
We want to hear