Sleep deprivation can influence professional behavior

Aug 08, 2012 By Lia Samson
Research by Professor of Management and Organizations Aleksander Ellis shows that a lack of sleep can cause deviant behavior on the job.

(Phys.org) -- In a recent paper, Aleksander Ellis of the University of Arizona Eller College of Management and a colleague demonstrate that lack of sleep can cause deviant behavior at work.

Early 2011 saw a spate of reports in the media about sleeping on the job as a result of . The potential harm from this behavior is obvious, but what about the average office job? Can sleep deprivation cause counterproductive, or even unethical, behavior in organizations?

“Over the past decade, Americans have been getting less and less sleep, and estimates are that this trend will continue,” said Professor of Management and Organizations Aleksander Ellis, the Charles and Candice Nelson Fellow. “In fact, in certain industries, is worn as a badge of honor.”

In a recent paper published in the Academy of Management Journal, Ellis and co-author Michael Christian of Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill demonstrate that lack of sleep can cause .

In one part of the study, for instance, the researchers asked a group of subjects to respond to an email that contained colloquial language and misspellings. One of the sleep-deprived subjects responded with an unprofessional, personal attack. This is just one example Ellis and Christian cite to demonstrate how sleep deprivation reduces self-control and increases hostility.

Ellis and Christian are currently working on a parallel project that examines how deprivation affects the tendency of individuals to behave unethically by conforming to the behavior of unethical authority figures.

Explore further: Do government technology investments pay off?

More information: journals.aomonline.org/amj/

Related Stories

Night shift nurses more likely to have poor sleep habits

Jun 11, 2007

Nurses who work the night shift are more likely to have poor sleep habits, a practice that can increase the likelihood of committing serious errors that can put the safety of themselves as well as their patients at risk, ...

Should we sleep more to lose weight?

Jul 10, 2012

Research to be presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior (SSIB), the foremost society for research into all aspects of eating and drinking behavior, suggests that sleep behavior affects ...

Recommended for you

Do government technology investments pay off?

Mar 30, 2015

Studies confirm that IT investments in companies improve productivity and efficiency. University of Michigan professor M.S. Krishnan wondered if the same was true for government.

Study finds assisted housing works, but it could be improved

Mar 30, 2015

Two researchers from the University of Kansas Department of Urban Planning have just completed a study on the locations of assisted housing units and assisted households across the nation. It examines one of the key issues ...

Economist probes the high cost of health care

Mar 27, 2015

When Zack Cooper arrived at Yale as assistant professor of public health and economics, he gained access to a first-of-its-kind dataset. Working with the non-profit Health Care Cost Institute, Cooper and ...

Cash remains king in Chile but its days could be numbered

Mar 26, 2015

For more than a year now, Chileans have endured a crisis of cash access. Despite global moves toward new forms of payment such as contactless and mobile transfers, the crisis in Chile highlights the continuing ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.