A Rude Awakening

Wednesday’s edition of All In The Mind featured a study on the effect of rudeness (in the workplace) on creativity and productivity. The study by Amir Erez of the University of Florida and Christine Porath of the University of Southern California, discovered that even witnessing rudeness can affect cognitive performance, memory and incliantion to help out.

This discovery is at odds with our culture of humiliation as seen in Britain’s Got Talent; X Factor; The Weakest Link; Dragons’ Den; The Apprentice. The first two of these are extremely popular with pupils and, before hearing of this study, I often used to wonder what message was being conveyed when the response to ambition was often mere cruelty.

Listen again here, or else! The article is the second of three in the programme.

One thought on “A Rude Awakening”

  1. When I heard this programme I thought of what I realised about 15 years ago when working for a year (mercifully only one year) with a particular teacher close to retirement. The children were only 7 or 8 and mostly compliant and eager to please, yet she was so often angry, often raised her voice and would slap a jotter down on the table with what seemed to me great violence . I could see that when she shouted or exclaimed in exasperation and impatience at one child, every single child in that class assumed that s/he was the target. Sometimes even I could feel my heart rate increase. Working with this teacher was incredibly difficult for me. The children in that year made significantly slower progress than the other class in the year group. She put it down to the children in the class. This research confirms my feeling that the problem was not the children.

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