Power: Written all over your face(?)

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Judgments of Power From College Yearbook Photos and Later Career Success
by Nicholas O. Rule and Nalini Ambady in Social Psychological and Personality Science published online 4 October 2010

Abstract: ….the authors find that inferences of power from photos of the faces of the managing partners of America’s top 100 law firms significantly corresponded to their success as leaders, as measured by the amounts of profits that their firms earned.

Thus, in the domain of leadership, individuals who look like better leaders could actually become better leaders because they are more often chosen for leadership positions, are more likely to be treated like leaders by their peers and mentors, and are given more opportunities to develop leadership abilities.

Is anyone else surprised that in this article, the word “gender” does not appear? Nor does the word “race” (except in the title of a cited article). But one of the authors, Dr. Nalini Ambady has done really important work on stereotyping (see here, for instance). I must be missing something. To me, what it doesn’t say is more interesting than what it does say. I do understand that shorter articles in some disciplines mean that not everything is going to be covered – and it’s certainly not my field. What am I missing? Link here (might not be free to those outside a University context).

You might also be interested in the information that the Law Society of Upper Canada collected on lawyers salaries. Maybe they should’ve looked at picture ratings, rather than race and gender. Oh…wait….       (continue reading the rest of the post here –>)

-Sonia Lawrence

cross-post from IFLS blog

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