Why is it so hard to recognize merits?

Many times happens to wonder why colleagues or managers do not easily recognize others’ merits. Let’s say that you just do not understand this unfair situation; so this perception of injustice, where does it come from?

Diapositiva1In defense of those who do not or are not able to fairly recognize merits, there are a couple of excuses; in fact we often feel, as a matter of cognitive protection, that we need to be recognized for something that in reality it is simply part of our tasks; in other cases we have only completed a task with common social sense, such as helping a colleague. Nothing more than be rewarded, it makes us feel so good. Apart from the cases in which we actually expect something more than deserved,  there are situations in which recognition is totally absent. The basis of this neglecting mechanism is not very different from the one when we seek recognition; in fact it is always a matter of cognition. In other words, going to recognize value of someone else requires use of cognitive resources and effort in going to value a colleague, often to our own detriment and appreciation at work; in fact, a defensive mechanism. Additionally, going to recognize the value of another person puts us in a disadvantage in terms of power distribution; in other words, since we recognize someone else,  it leaves room for greater awareness of the other giving more action in the organization’s power play.

Clearly what I just said, especially for the fact that my studies are in work psychology, are not directed to advice to do not to gratify the work of others, rather the contrary. It  is important to understand why sometimes happen, in order to being more aware of such reasons; managers, especially, should however be aware that a clear, fair and honest  relationship, moves creation of a positive psychological contract and the engagement of person.

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