• All Share : 51086.44
    UP 0.25%
    Top 40 : 4235.66
    DOWN -0.16%
    Financial 15 : 14682.43
    UP 0.15%
    Industrial 25 : 59724.64
    UP 0.57%

  • ZAR/USD : 10.6617
    UP 0.03%
    ZAR/GBP : 17.7146
    UP 0.26%
    ZAR/EUR : 14.0053
    UP 0.11%
    ZAR/JPY : 0.1022
    DOWN -0.11%
    ZAR/AUD : 9.9610
    UP 0.19%

  • Gold : 1287.9150
    UP 0.15%
    Platinum : 1423.5000
    UP 0.18%
    Silver : 19.4800
    UP 0.11%
    Palladium : 910.5000
    UP 0.94%
    Brent Crude Oil : 103.110
    DOWN -0.15%

  • All data is delayed by 15 min. Data supplied by INET BFA
    Hover cursor over this ticker to pause.

Mon Sep 01 13:16:07 SAST 2014

Lead us not into temptation at work: study

Times LIVE | 05 February, 2013 10:23
File picture of a paper keyboard.
Image by: THINKSTOCK

Researchers have found that resisting the temptation to watch a funny video actually hurts office workers' productivity.

Danish research published in the journal PloS One found that people who were asked not to watch a funny video, who then had one presented to them were more likely to make mistakes and in general have lower output than workers who had not been subjected to temptation.

They split a group of sixty people into two randomly assigned treatments - no willpower, and willpower treatment.

The tests then went on to three phases. The first phase was a simple counting task, the second was a funny video was presented to the test subjects via a red button, and in the third phase there was another counting task.

The only difference between the two groups was that the willpower group was asked not to press the red button. All participants could hear sounds from the video.

"In this paper we find that subjects required to resist the temptation of a humorous video made significantly larger mistakes on a subsequent counting task," the researchers wrote.

"Willpower depletion resulting from resisting the temptation to watch the video may have made concentration on a subsequent labour productivity task more difficult. Alternatively, watching the video may have promoted resource replenishment, enabling higher levels of concentration on the subsequent task," the researchers said.

While the researchers highlighted that one limitation to the study was that people who believe willpower to be a depletable resource tend to treat it like one so further work could be done on manipulating that belief, they also noted that perhaps companies shouldn't provide temptations like the Internet and then ask their employees not to use them.

Alternatively, where not having the Internet available would be impractical, the researchers suggested 'employers might consider allowing regular Internet breaks, in the same way that many currently accommodate short but not infrequent cigarette or coffee breaks.'

SHARE YOUR OPINION

If you have an opinion you would like to share on this article, please send us an e-mail to the Times LIVE iLIVE team. In the mean time, click here to view the Times LIVE iLIVE section.
Mon Sep 01 13:16:07 SAST 2014 ::