Study: Stressed Bosses “More Abusive to Employees”

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Maybe you should've gotten your boss a speed bag for Christmas.

It might send the message, "Hey, you're kinda fat," but really, it's to everyone else's benefit that the boss is trim and doesn't get winded when he goes up the steps to the office.

Why? A new study by James Burton, a professor in the department of management in Northern Illinois University's College of Business, found that "managers who don’t get regular exercise struggle to cope with time pressures and they take out that frustration on their employees."

It sounds crazy, but it makes sense. Exercise is a way to relieve stress. Bosses have a lot of responsibilities. That means not a lot of free time. And that means a lot of sitting around and working. Which, even if you sit on one of those exercise balls at your desk, doesn't mean you're exercising.

These findings add credence to the belief that a supervisor's stress is usually passed along to employees. That's bad. Curiously, this also recalls another quieting study we reported on last year: Jerks tend to make more money than non-jerks. Something to think about if you work for a schlubby jerk: They probably earn more money than you. Happy TGIF!

David Wolinsky is a freelance writer and a lifelong Chicagoan. In addition to currently serving as an interviewer-writer for Adult Swim, he's also a columnist for EGM. He was the Chicago city editor for The Onion A.V. Club where he provided in-depth daily coverage of this city's bustling arts/entertainment scene for half a decade. When not playing video games for work he's thinking of dashing out to Chicago Diner, Pizano's, or Yummy Yummy. His first career aspirations were to be a game-show host.

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