People who can identify moments of emotional expression in others tend to earn a higher salary, according to a new study conducted by the Department of Psychology at the University of Bonn.

Led by Professor Dr. Gerhard Blickle, a team of researchers exposed 142 working adults to images and recordings of people having standard emotional responses such as anger, sadness, joy, etc. For the experiment, professional actors and children were recorded because they did not hide their emotions in "adult" ways.

Researchers then asked study participants' colleagues to assess their social skills, including their ability to be attuned, influential, apparently sincere, and be good as networkers. Not only were good identifiers of emotion rated higher by their colleagues as socially adept but they also earned higher salaries.

In the study's conclusion, researchers recommend that more emphasis be placed on the emotional skills of managers since they are tasked with motivating employees who work under them. And unfortunately, say researchers, the ability to correctly identify emotional responses is more of an ingrained skill than a learned one.

In his Big Think interview, author Dev Patnaik maintains that the ability to understand the feelings of your work colleagues is key to innovation and success.

Read more at Science Daily

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