Why flattering your boss can backfire
If you love to indulge in flattery or kissing up to your boss, think twice While it may boost your career, it can also drain self control resources, thus making you more susceptible to bad behaviour at the workplace
New York: If you love to indulge in flattery or kissing up to your boss, think twice. While it may boost your career, it can also drain self control resources, thus making you more susceptible to bad behaviour at the workplace, a study has found. Ingratiation, or kissing up, which generally includes flattery, conforming with the supervisor's opinion and doing favours, is just one of the many behaviours employees use to create and maintain their desired image in the workplace.
However, "there's a personal cost to ingratiating yourself with your boss", said lead author Anthony Klotz, Associate Professor at the Oregon State University (OSU) in the US. "When your energy is depleted, it may nudge you into slack-off territory," he added. The findings, appearing in the journal of Applied Psychology, showed that the extent to which employees engaged in ingratiation varied widely from day to day and the more they engaged in kissing up, the more their self-control resources got depleted.
"It makes sense that ingratiation is depleting, because successfully kissing up requires the appearance of sincerity and that requires self-control," Klotz said. The employees with depleted self-control were more likely to engage in workplace deviance such as incivility to a co-worker, skipping a meeting or surfing the internet rather than working, the researchers said.