September 22, 2004
Flipflops? Fondle? Flout? Fabulous?
A new study presents the (not-so) shocking conclusion that depending on the context, using the f-word at work can be a good thing. Researchers found that use of the expletive built solidarity within a work team in a New Zealand factory.
Not that this can be taken as license to let your filthy mouth run wild at work. The abstract and the article itself argue (unsurprisingly) that how people interpret any given expletive depends greatly on norms in a workplace community. In other words, just because this works in a New Zealand soap factory doesn't mean you should try it at your next meeting. But the larger point is thought-provoking: behaviors that are widely regarded as impolite or inappropriate may be exactly the opposite in the right situation.
Oh, and if you do decide to swear a blue streak at your next meeting, let me know how that goes.
at September 22, 2004 10:03 PM
I can tell my students that they're real f*ck-ups and it will be good for them?! At last, my unspoken thoughts liberated…liberated I say!
Sure, Chris, go for it! Who cares if it's educationally sound? It'll build community!
I have found that when managing younger people, I got quite a reaction when I let a swear word slip, like "Shit" after a particularly bad occurance. I think it may have helped show I was "more like them" and encouraged bonding of sorts, but you have to use this very selectively. I have had other managers who tried to force this sort of thing though and that didn't work. You can tell when it's fake or it was "jockular" which I didn't respond to either. Sort of like when a sales manager called me a "stud" for getting good numbers...I almost lost my lunch.
This will be first one that made me sigh with assistance. Posting something of ones own for the world to view is a very unique business. I suppose that in case the blog feels directly to you, then it is right for the world.