Haters May Be Better at their Jobs

hatersAccording to new research, “haters, ” or those people who dislike so many things, may actually be good at their jobs.[1] Why? Because they spend a lot of time on a few activities, giving them the opportunity to hone their skills on those focused tasks.1 A person’s dispositional attitude—whether they are a “hater” or a “liker”—plays an important role in their daily activities.1 This means that people who like many things do many different things over the course of a week.1 On the other hand, haters do very few things with their time.1

The study found that haters and likers did not differ in how much time they spent doing activities throughout the week.1 Instead, the difference was in the number of activities each did.1 Haters spent more time on any given activity compared to likers.1 While some may categorize haters as less active because they do fewer things, they are actually more focused because they spend more time on the small number of things they do.1

“The present results demonstrate that patterns of general action may occur for reasons other than the desire to be active versus inactive,” the researchers said. “Indeed, some people may be more active than other not because they want to be active per se, but because they identify a large number of specific behaviors in which they want to engage.”1

For their research, Justin Hepler, PhD, from the Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Dolores Albarracin, PhD, from the Annensberg School for Communication and Department of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, conducted two studies in which they asked participants to report all of their activities over a one-week period.1 They also asked participants to complete a measure of dispositional attitudes.1

The researchers found that while haters and likers did not differ in the types of activities they pursued, haters tended to do fewer activities throughout the week.1 Nearly 15 percent of the differences in how many activities people conducted during a week was associated with being a hater versus a liker.1

This same patter could also help explain why some people have longer attention spans than others.1

[1] Wood, J. (2014). Why Haters May Be Better at Their Jobs. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 23, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/news/2014/06/22/why-haters-may-be-better-at-their-jobs/71522.html

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