MSU Study: Unattractive workers suffer more on the job
11:39 AM, Jun 19, 2013
2:10 PM, Jun 19, 2013
DETROIT (WXYZ) - The hotness meter is ticking and the cost of being unattractive is high, especially at work. Michigan State University's business scholar Brent Scott found that people who are considered unattractive are more likely to be belittled and bullied on the job
"Frankly, it's an ugly finding," said Brent Scott. "Although we like to think we're professional and mature in the workplace, it can be just like high school in many ways."
There are other studies on high school students that link popularity to attractiveness. This is also the case in the work force.
Researchers surveyed 114 workers at a health care facility in the southwestern U.S. The results showed that people, who are considered less attractive, receive harsher treatment in the workplace.
In order to determine the levels of attractiveness for each worker, the researchers showed pictures to random people who didn't know the participants and asked their opinion.
The next level that was also studied is agreeability. Participants' families and close friends were asked several questions regarding their personality. The study found that personality also plays a role in attractiveness. Workers who were friendlier were treated nicer as well.
"Our findings revealed that both personality and appearance matter," Scott said.
This is the first study that links attractiveness to cruelty in the workplace. The results appear in the research journal human performance.