Being treated unfairly at work leads to illness

Staff who feel they are treated unfairly at work are at increased risk of being off sick more frequently and for longer, according to new research by a team from a number of universities in Europe and the US.

What the researchers say: Increasingly important contributing factors to mental and physical illness—and therefore sick leave—are found in the work environment.… [read more]

Depression, burnout and low quality of life.

Human stress is simply a result of our modern society forcing us to try and exceed our genetic design specs. We are simply not designed to live in a materialistic unequal society and work in the ways and for the long hours that we do.… [read more]

The desire to share wealth has nothing to do with fairness

In a new study, researchers found support for the theory that redistribution is a function of compassion, self-interest, and envy—but not fairness.

What the researchers say: Economic redistribution has been a core political dispute around the world for centuries. And while intuitively fairness seems a natural explanation for why people support redistribution, the researchers found that fairness doesn’t really explain who supports redistribution or why.… [read more]

Brands can tempt us to lie, cheat and steal

While many people consider themselves generally moral and honest, even the most upstanding citizens will likely become willing to lie, cheat and steal under certain circumstances, according to evidence from a new study in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.

What the researchers say: If consumers believe that a company is harmful in some way—to the environment or to people – then they feel justified participating in illegal activities, such as shoplifting, piracy or hacking, according to findings in the study.… [read more]

Empowering workers can cause uncertainty and resentment

Attempts by managers to empower staff by delegating different work to them or asking for their opinions can be detrimental to employee productivity, research shows. On the face of it this finding goes against current conventional wisdom.

What the researchers say: Giving employees more authority can have a negative impact on their day to day performance and perhaps give the impression that their boss is just seeking to avoid doing their own work, according to the study.… [read more]

Narcissism and leadership: Does it work to be a jerk?

Well, now it’s official—what we’ve always known: narcissists are more likely to become leaders (witness DT) and they are also more likely to be bad leaders (again, witness DT).

Ask most workers if they’ve ever had a narcissist for a boss and you’ll hear stories of leaders who have taken credit for others’ work, made decisions without consulting others and used every opportunity to talk about themselves.… [read more]

Can we prevent 24-hour working becoming the new norm?

Many of us, especially in the professions, are trapped in a 24-hour work day thanks to our attachment to smartphones and the like. Research is beginning to show that this isn’t such a smart idea.

What the researchers say: Many researchers are urging employers to do more to ensure employees do not feel pressured into working outside of their contractual hours and offer more support regarding how they work flexibly, a new study in the International Journal of Management Reviews reports.… [read more]

Workplace sexual harassment “a chronic problem.”

Sexual harassment in the workplace is a pervasive, chronic problem that can cause enduring psychological harm, according to the president of the American Psychological Association, to which I belong.

“Sexual harassment in the workplace is a significant occupational health psychology problem,” he said.… [read more]

Urgent protection for the environment needed to safeguard human health

Numerous studies have shown that the best cure for depression, anxiety, and ADHD is exposure to nature—the very thing we are destroying as fast as we can. We need to pay more attention to the health of the planet to save lives and improve global mental and physical health, now and in the future, Dr Samuel Myers said at The Academy of Medical Sciences & The Lancet International Health Lecture1 last week an accompanying article in The Lancet is here).… [read more]