Ever find yourself in meetings where people who talk the most often know the least? A recent Journal of Personality and Social Psychology study shows that people who see themselves as being in a higher social class tend to have an exaggerated belief that they are more capable than their equally skilled lower class colleagues, allowing them to climb the hierarchy with their overconfidence. The study’s author, University of Virginia management professor Peter Belmi says after awhile, we may see through their false competence. Four of his investigations found that people with more education, more income and a higher perceived social class believed that they would perform better on various assigned tasks compared with their lower-class counterparts, but they really didn’t and were, on average, no better at the tests than their lower-class counterparts.
Note: Temple University sociologist Matt Wray has found working-class resentment toward elites could be based on the anger and disillusionment working-class people feel when they realize their bosses and supervisors have duped us into believing that they deserve their higher status and better pay because they have better skills when in fact they don’t.
(Source: Alfred Lubrano The Philadelphia Inquirer, Toronto Star; Image: The Philadelphia Inquirer)