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Men less engaged in their work

Published on Friday, 02 Jul 2010
Employers need to find ways to engage young men at work.
The sense of touch can influence a job interview.

Men in Britain are less engaged at work compared with women until the final years of employment, when they get a late surge of enthusiasm, according to a survey.

Men start off their careers at a lower level of job satisfaction than women, only catching up shortly before retirement.

Women's engagement starts high, before dipping mid-career and then bouncing back again shortly before retirement.

The research carried out by Simon Easton and Darren Van Laar, of the University of Portsmouth's psychology department and spin-out company QoWL, did not look into why there were changes in enthusiasm or explain the differences between the attitudes of men and women.

But the pair say the research should encourage employers to hang on to older, more experienced workers who are generally more "engaged".

Van Laar say the findings suggest employers could increase employee retention, get higher productivity and reduce absenteeism if they find ways to increase young men's engagement. The research quizzed 4,000 people at nine large educational organisations. Reuters 


Touch affects reactions  

Understanding the effect of touch may be especially important for negotiators, pollsters, job-seekers, sensory marketers and others, according to a paper published in the journal Science.

Researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Yale and Harvard universities asked 54 passers-by to evaluate a job candidate by reading that person's résumé, which was attached to a clipboard.

Some clipboards were heavier than the others. People holding the heavy clipboard evaluated the job candidate as better and more serious than did people holding the same résumé on a light clipboard. 

A series of tests showed that the sense of touch can have a significant impact on people's reactions, even though they may not realise it. AP 


Lawyers' fee curb attacked 

Beijing's drive to pull in the purse strings of criminal lawyers, who have been criticised recently for overcharging clients, is drawing fire from legal experts who say law firms should be allowed to set prices through free bargaining, China Daily reports.

Since the end of last month, criminal lawyers' charges in Beijing have been regulated by the government. Fees collected by lawyers for criminal cases during initial court proceedings should be no more than 30,000 yuan (HK$34,355). 

"For a burglary case, it usually takes half an hour to finish the session and the lawyer gets a 10,000 yuan fee, but a complicated criminal case could take half a month and it would be silly for the lawyer to be saddled with a maximum payment of 30,000 yuan," says Xu Lanting of W&H Law Firm. "If there is no marked difference in income, who will bother to take on complicated criminal cases?"

The move aims to trim prices charged by senior lawyers.

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