Fresh Look – Does displaying self-confidence pay off politically?

In general, appearing self-confident helps one emerge as a leader.[1] It leads to the perception that one is trustworthy and credible, especially if it is accompanied by positive performance.[2] In any event, appearing self-confident is associated with erect posture, unwavering…

Fresh Look – Healthy attitude toward politics

We develop our attitude toward office politics according to our experience. If we observe a lot of self-serving manipulative behavior, especially if we are victimized by it, our attitude is likely to be negative. Accordingly, politics becomes highly stressful[1], and…

Fresh Look – The political costs of getting mad depend on your sex and race

I have written before about the strategic use of anger. For example, when mediating a conflict or negotiating, the expression of negative emotions may have a positive effect.[1] However, anger must be very carefully used, especially if you are a…

Fresh Look – the wisdom of back-up plans

You are going into politically charged meeting and have a game plan for how it will unfold. The meeting takes an unexpected turn, but you have a back-up plan and shift to it. Sounds wise, doesn’t it? Not necessarily. On…

Sleep deprivation and office politics

There is ample evidence that tired employees are impaired political players. They are less able to perform in complex social situations[1] and they are prone to resorting to crude rather than subtle political practices.[2] Healthy sleep practices are critical to…

Fresh Look – Emotionally adroit office politicians

Emotions are contagious.[1] When you go to a meeting where everyone else is acting cheerfully and optimistically, it can’t help but buoy your spirits. Similarly, contact with an angry customer often leads you to displace your frustration on others nearby.[2]…

Fresh Look – The home life of senior managers

It is self-evident that what happens at home spills over into the workplace. Even seemingly ordinary aspects of our lives at home have been shown to significantly impact our experiences and effectiveness at work. For example, whether employees have had…

Fresh Look – Blessings and curses

As some of you may know, I spent two years directing a university center that enabled students to have direct contact and spend time with homeless and economically disadvantaged people. The theory that propelled this program is that college students…

fresh start

With this post, I am beginning a new series entitled, FRESH LOOK. During my “leave,” I thought a lot about where this blog was going. Up to this point, I have brought you new research findings relevant to office politics….

The benefits of being a little obsessive-compulsive

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder is no laughing matter. The victims of OCD experience uncontrollable, unwanted thoughts and repetitive, ritualized behaviors they feel compelled to perform. People who have OCD recognize that their obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviors are irrational—but even so, they…