Working with idiots can kill you

My mom sent me a newspaper article today to make me feel better. Maybe I should say she sent what looks like a newspaper article. I don’t think it’s genuine, for a number of reasons: no byline, feature style in what’s presented as a hard news story, grammatical errors you wouldn’t expect to see in a newspaper, only one source, more than half the story is long quotes from the single source, and most convincingly, I couldn’t find any mention of it online.

Still, it at least makes an entertaining read. I present it verbatim.IDIOTS in the office are just as hazardous to your health as cigarettes, caffeine, or greasy food, an eye-opening new study reveals.

In fact, those dopes can kill you! Stress is one of the top causes of heart attacks–and working with stupid people on a daily basis is one of the deadliest forms of stress, according to researchers at Sweeden’s Lindbergh University MedicalCentre.

The author of the study, Dr Dagmar Andersson, says her team studied 500 heart attack patients, and were puzzled to find 62 percent had relatively few of the physical risk factors commonly blamed for heart attacks.

"Then we questioned them about lifestyle habits, and almost all of these low-risk patients told us they worked with people so stupid they can barely find their way from the parking lot to their office. And their heart attack came less than 12 hours after having a major confrontation with one of these oafs.

"One woman had to be rushed to the hospital after her assistant shredded important company tax documents instead of copying them. A man told us he collapsed right at his desk because the woman at the next cubicle kept asking him for correction fluid–for her computer monitor.

"You can cut back on smoking or improve your diet," Dr. Andersson says, "but most people have very poor coping skills when it comes to stupidity–they feel there’s nothing they can do about it, so they just internalise their frustration until they finally explode."

Stupid co-workers can also double or triple someone’s work load, she explains. "Many of our subjects feel sorry for the drooling idiots they work with, so they try to dover for them by fixing their mistakes. One poor woman spent a week rebuilding client records because a clerk put them all in the ‘recycle bin’ of her computer and then emptied it–she thought it means the records would be recycled and used again."

4 thoughts on “Working with idiots can kill you

  • June 2, 2005 at 10:44 am
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    This isn’t related to today’s thread. It’s just something which may interest you. Way out here in Australia, all the ads we see from "Ads by Goooooogle" on your site are about wedding photographers. Australian wedding photographers. Continent-wide – 3000 km apart – but still….

    OK, so I’m warped, twisted, and Australian – but still – I found it both amusing and enlightening.

    • June 2, 2005 at 8:12 pm
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      It’s pretty heavy on the wedding photographer ads here too, though the ads I’m seeing are a bit closer to me than 3,000 miles. Sure wish Google would serve up some of those profitable mortgage refinance ads again. Back when it was serving those up, I was making twice what I’m making now hawking wedding photogs.

    • June 2, 2005 at 8:16 pm
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      Ah, so that’s why it didn’t turn up in Google News. I guess Google doesn’t spider that fine publication. Wonder why? [/eyeroll]

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