Does being fair take its toll on people?

Jake10

Ad Honoris
Oct 2010
11,960
Canada
I would have thought these people would have been able to sleep better at night, but it may not be according to this article. Could it be that others take advantage of fair people?

A new study led by Michigan State University’s Russell E. Johnson found the act of carefully monitoring the fairness of workplace decisions wears down supervisors mentally and emotionally. - See more at: Fair bosses pay a price | MSUToday | Michigan State University
Fair bosses pay a price | MSUToday | Michigan State University
 

Ichon

Ad Honorem
Mar 2013
3,708
What is fair? Most people seem to judge fairness based on the people around them and their expectations to some degree but it appears a sense of fairness is even in children at a very young age. Figuring out fairness | Harvard Gazette

What I think causes managers more stress is accurately judging merit. In many workplaces it isn't easily obvious who is contributing the most as different people doing different work for various tasks do create different amounts of value but ideally all are essential (or why do they have a job?).

Managers supposedly get paid more because they work the longest hours and supervise everyone and so get a sense of who is contributing the most but I think most people realize that is rarely how it goes as managers often fail to notice the quiet people who work hard and don't raise much fuss while the mediocre can blend in or even get positive notice if more skilled at self promotion than their actual tasks.

Not to mention having to tell people they did a good job but their work really isn't as valuable as another person who just did not seem to make the same effort.
 

Jake10

Ad Honoris
Oct 2010
11,960
Canada
What is fair? Most people seem to judge fairness based on the people around them and their expectations to some degree but it appears a sense of fairness is even in children at a very young age. Figuring out fairness | Harvard Gazette

What I think causes managers more stress is accurately judging merit. In many workplaces it isn't easily obvious who is contributing the most as different people doing different work for various tasks do create different amounts of value but ideally all are essential (or why do they have a job?).

Managers supposedly get paid more because they work the longest hours and supervise everyone and so get a sense of who is contributing the most but I think most people realize that is rarely how it goes as managers often fail to notice the quiet people who work hard and don't raise much fuss while the mediocre can blend in or even get positive notice if more skilled at self promotion than their actual tasks.

Not to mention having to tell people they did a good job but their work really isn't as valuable as another person who just did not seem to make the same effort.
I suppose, however, that most individuals feel that they are doing better than others, yet the squeaky wheel tends to get the grease. So, perhaps being fair means making the complainers understand that they're not as good as the quiet workers.
 

Menshevik

Ad Honorem
Dec 2012
9,336
here
I was just saying that as a general principle. Nobody takes advantage of you, without you allowing them to do so. I think that's a victim mentality. If you think you're being taken advantage of, then cease helping that person out. There's a huge difference between being fair and being a sucker. Fairness and letting someone take advantage of you, aren't synonymous with each other.

It sounds like the managers in your article need to focus a bit more on #1. I don't think you can take care of other people if you don't take care of yourself.

"Tips for managers include getting sufficient sleep, taking short mental breaks during the workday, adhering to a healthy diet and detaching from work completely when outside of the office – for example, not reading email or memos at home after 7" p.m. - See more at: Fair bosses pay a price | MSUToday | Michigan State University
 
Feb 2014
379
Texas
I'm not quite sure anything is really fair because for me that might be still subjective. And while I've always promoted fairness to the best of one's ability as an adult. As noted above what is that? In my case it's what I've learned was fair by those before me. And since. Whether it was a law or moral, ethical or religious code.

I remember once as a child I wasn't very fair with a sibling according to my mom. End result: a posterior warming. It hurt and it stuck.:)
 

Jake10

Ad Honoris
Oct 2010
11,960
Canada
I'm not quite sure anything is really fair because for me that might be still subjective. And while I've always promoted fairness to the best of one's ability as an adult. As noted above what is that? In my case it's what I've learned was fair by those before me. And since. Whether it was a law or moral, ethical or religious code.

I remember once as a child I wasn't very fair with a sibling according to my mom. End result: a posterior warming. It hurt and it stuck.:)

Being fair is very subjective, but there is one thing that is imperative to being fair, and it is the most difficult to achieve. It is putting our personal preferences aside and making decisions based purely on logic. Sometimes this can mean promoting the worker who doesn't like the boss and is after his/her job.
 
Feb 2014
379
Texas
''It is putting our personal preferences aside and making decisions based purely on logic.''


I can't argue the philosophy of that as being important. But partiality-nepotism and self interest seem to be part of the human makeup..psyche if you will. iow. collectively, it's done or applied because enough of us want fairness or security found in fairness. And logic should trump emotion. Fair enough.


Individually though, and for that matter as a collective; and logically? :confused:

History doesn't look to favorably on us in that respect.
 

Jake10

Ad Honoris
Oct 2010
11,960
Canada
''It is putting our personal preferences aside and making decisions based purely on logic.''


I can't argue the philosophy of that as being important. But partiality-nepotism and self interest seem to be part of the human makeup..psyche if you will. iow. collectively, it's done or applied because enough of us want fairness or security found in fairness. And logic should trump emotion. Fair enough.


Individually though, and for that matter as a collective; and logically? :confused:

History doesn't look to favorably on us in that respect.
Let me ask you this: Let's say you're the boss in a company and you have to choose to let one worker go due to budget cuts. There are two people to choose from. Person A is a nice guy who brings in fair profits but needs guidance. Person B is not very nice to you but liked by customers, so he brings in higher profits, and he wants to challenge you. Who do you let go?