Feeling good at work may lead to negative outcomes
Contrary to popular opinion, it can be good to feel bad at work, while feeling good in the workplace can also lead to negative outcomes, says research.
"The findings of the studies challenge the widely held assumption that in the workplace positive emotions generate or engender a positive outcome, and vice versa," said Dirk Lindebaum from University of Liverpool in Britain.
Being too positive in the workplace, rather than resulting in greater well-being and greater productivity, can lead to complacency and superficiality, the findings of one study showed.
On the other hand, anger does not always lead to negative outcomes and can be used as a force for good through acting upon injustices, the study said.
"Anger can be considered a force for good if motivated by perceived violations of moral standards."
An employee, for example, could express anger constructively after a manager has treated a fellow worker unfairly.
In such cases, anger can be useful to prevent these acts of injustice from repeating themselves in the future.
Within team situations, negativity can have a good affect, leading to less consensus and therefore greater discussion among workers which enhances team effectiveness, another study noted.
The studies appeared in a special issue of the journal Human Relations.
(Posted on 22-08-2014)