Going to lunch? Put your phone away.

After a flurry of memos, meetings, and phone calls you might be ready for a break. While turning to your phone for a few rounds of Candy Crush or a quick look at Facebook might seem relaxing, new research suggests that when people spent their breaks using a smartphone, breaks just aren’t that restorative.Psychological scientists … Continue reading Going to lunch? Put your phone away.

The Right Music Can Make People More Cooperative

Music is a common feature in many workplaces – from surgery suites to the mechanic’s shop. But when businesses play music, it’s typically to influence the mood of customers. Studies have shown that background music, even when we don’t notice it, can have an effect on our buying preferences. However, relatively little research has studied … Continue reading The Right Music Can Make People More Cooperative

You’re Joking: Detecting Sarcasm in Emails Isn’t Easy

“Well, that meeting was a really fantastic use of my time.”You may want to think twice before hitting send on that email with a sarcastic joke – regardless of whether your boss or your work buddies are on the receiving end. New research investigating how we determine the emotional content of text is showing that … Continue reading You’re Joking: Detecting Sarcasm in Emails Isn’t Easy

A Good Mood is a Good Motivator

You need to alphabetize those files, transcribe last week’s meeting, and then look up some tax codes, but actually motivating yourself to take care of these tedious tasks can be a real challenge. According to new research from APS Fellow James J. Gross (Stanford University) and colleagues, people are much more likely to take on … Continue reading A Good Mood is a Good Motivator

Why It’s So Hard to Shake a Bad First Impression

A new study demonstrates that shaking a negative first impression is often diabolically difficult, providing just one more reason to make sure that you show up on time for your next job interview. “Moral and immoral behaviors often come in small doses. A person might donate just a few dollars to charity or cheat on … Continue reading Why It’s So Hard to Shake a Bad First Impression

Entitled at the Top: Are Leaders More Selfish Than the Rest of Us?

Leaders’ propensity for generosity seems to depend on whether they feel like they’ve earned their high-status position, according to new research conducted by psychological scientists Nicholas Hays (Michigan State University) and Steven Blader (New York University). The findings indicate that a boss or colleague who feels that their high-status position is unearned is likely to … Continue reading Entitled at the Top: Are Leaders More Selfish Than the Rest of Us?