What increases performance and persistence but decreases interpersonal skills?

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Via Science Daily:

In a recent set of experiments, psychologists Kathleen D. Vohs of the University of Minnesota, Nicole L. Mead of Florida State University and Miranda R. Goode of the University of British Columbia found that participants’ personal performance improved, and interpersonal relationships and sensitivity towards others declined, when they were reminded of money.

And:

Specifically, those participants who were exposed to money spent less time helping a person who needed it, sat farther away from another person and preferred solitary activities. In addition, they showed preferences for working alone and asked for help less frequently. On the other hand, participants also revealed an increased desire to take on more work and showed greater persistence in difficult tasks.

The authors argue that, desirable or undesirable, money obviously plays a large role in human behavior and there is not enough experimental research on its psychological influence: “We encourage scientists to turn their attention toward the cognitive, motivational and behavioral consequences of money because the centrality of money in people’s lives shows no sign of waning,” they concluded.

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