Startups have found countless innovative ways to create a positive work atmosphere and boost productivity. But there is one scientifically-backed way to reduce stress and improve moods that's incredibly simple: Get an office dog.
In an effort to spread the beneficial impact of having a canine companion at work, in May video marketing startup Wistia conducted a global competition for the best startup office dog. Applicants to the "Startpup" contest had to send in two-minute videos of their pups to a panel four of judges, including Off the Leash author Matthew Gilbert and venture capitalist Marta Sjörgen.
This week, the winner was announced: French bulldog Amelie from London-based marketing firm Rooster Punk. Amelie nabbed the top spot thanks to her combination of humor and spunk, according to the contest website, and because the judges thought Rooster Punk's video portrayed how "crucial and dynamic her role was to the company."
Wistia's contest, for which it partnered with Humane Society International, was inspired by its own office dog, Lenny. "It is obvious to me that wherever you are, office pups can be a positive and welcome influence at work." Chris Lavigne, Wistia's video production head and Lenny's owner, told Newsweek.
In addition to becoming the top office dog, Amelie won a lifetime Wistia video plan, a $500 donation to a local Humane Society, and a GroPro camera for the human workers at Rooster Punk.
The runner-up was miniature poodle Charlie from Los Angeles-based online marketing company Wpromote. Honorable mentions included the many office dogs at SCOTTeVEST, the clothing startup that says its offices are "dog-centric."
"It's not just about the environment we created for the dogs, but about the happiness we all have by having our dogs beside us during the day," SCOTTeVest said in a Facebook post.