When you're really high up overlooking the city, do you ever feel like anything is possible? Like you can literally do anything?
A study—published by the Society for Consumer Psychology—found that elevation of an office has *some* impact on your decision-making process. The research team analyzed data from around 3,000 international hedge funds with major financial assets.
They found a slight yet significant correlation between elevation and volatility of the fund. People who were higher up were more willing to take financial risks. Lead by Dr. Sina Esteky, the team asked participants to partake in several activities, one of which was to make bets while going up and down an elevator.
Those who were ascending to the 72nd floor were more likely to make a risky bet even if it didn't secure a win. On the other hand, participants who were descending opted for the safer option that could result in either a moderate or slightly bigger win.
Another experiment "involved asking subjects to make ten separate decisions with varying levels of risk and benefit. When individuals involved in this test were either on the ground floor or third floor of a building, the research team once again saw participants on the higher floor more frequently chose riskier options..."
Dr. Esteky explained, "The brain is very susceptive to subtle situational factors, but also really good at correcting for such effects, so awareness can help us be more rational in our decisions. When you increase elevation, there is a subconscious effect on the sense of power...This heighted feeling of power results in more risk-seeking behavior."
But once the subjects were informed of how the elevation level affected their behavior, it stopped being true. The next time you need a little push to take a professional risk, make your way to the top (literally).
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