Fairness and equality of rewards improves workers’ wellbeing, as well as their performance.


Researchers at the Affective Brain Lab, University College London and Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford, conducted a psychological experiment with an online labour market platform to answer this question. They thought that unfair rewards would not only make people unhappy (as Kahneman had found) but would also affect their motivation to work for further rewards.

To that aim, they examined participants’ willingness to complete a simple transcribing task in exchange for a monetary reward, “while observing the rewards offered to others for completing the same task”…The researchers found that, despite the same level of absolute reward, participants were less willing to work for a reward of £0.24 when they believed that:the distribution of offered rewards was unfair (red) than when it was fair (blue)the rank of their reward was lower.What’s more, the results of the experiment indicated that unfairness does not only discourage those who are offered the lowest rewards but also those who could consider themselves luckier.This blog comes from Magdalena Soffia, workplace wellbeing analyst. Read more

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