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Research suggests that in order to raise your productivity and produce better work, the best thing you can do is to simply sit next to co-workers who embody these qualities.

Apparently a quarter of people are “productive workers”, meaning they work the fastest, and a quarter are “quality workers”, meaning they produce work to the highest standards. Situate yourself close to these people and their qualities will rub off on you, by a factor of about 10%.

The effect goes the other way too, so if you sit next to poor performers, you’ll soon be getting less done. This “toxic spillover” is more powerful – sitting next to people who mess about and waste time at work makes others 27% more likely to do the same.

The research echoes Gallup’s findings that show if your best friend is very active, you’re three times more likely to be very active too. But that’s not all – the friend effect is even stronger when it comes to healthy eating. You’re five times more likely to eat a healthy diet if your best friend does.

So – if you’re keen to improve your salary, your fitness or your diet, Think about which of your co-workers and friends are a good influence. See if their habits rub off on you!