PLoS One, Vol. 8, No. 1, 2013
15 Pages Posted: 28 Feb 2011 Last revised: 11 Jan 2014
Date Written: February 21, 2011
To encourage worker productivity offices prohibit Internet use. Consequently, many employees delay Internet activity to the end of the workday. Recent work in social psychology, however, suggests that using willpower to delay gratification can negatively impact performance. We report data from an experiment where subjects in a Willpower Treatment are asked to resist the temptation to join others in watching a humorous video for 10 minutes. In relation to a baseline treatment that does not require willpower, we show that resisting this temptation detrimentally impacts economic productivity on a subsequent task.
Keywords: Temptation, Willpower, Lab Experiment
JEL Classification: C93, D01
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
Bucciol, Alessandro and Houser, Daniel and Piovesan, Marco, Temptation at Work (February 21, 2011). PLoS One, Vol. 8, No. 1, 2013; Harvard Business School Research Paper No. 11-090. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1772815 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1772815