A deadpan look comes in handy at the poker table, in a police interrogation, and if you’re one of those English guards who wears the goofy hats. Otherwise, it might work against you, according to research from the University of Oregon.
Four actors were shown two scenes — one funny, one sad — from two different movies. The actors were instructed to either embrace their intuition to react to the scene, or to scale back their emotions. Those reactions were shown to 149 undergrads — sometimes the undergrads saw the scene, sometimes they didn’t. Unsurprisingly, the humanoids that delivered an emotionless response got a negative reaction when viewers were asked to judge their personality and answer whether they’d like to hang out with the “suppressors.”
The one time the no-reaction got a positive response was when the subjects knew the actors were watching the phony orgasm scene from When Harry Met Sally. Why did that happen? We have no goddamn clue. Why is that scene from When Harry Met Sally so famous? We have no goddamn clue.
What we can say is that if this study is true more often than not, it’s better for you to attempt to be a social butterfly — or at least feign interest without going over the top — at work and with clients. Life is about relationships, and people want to be surrounded by and in business with other human beings who act more like creatures with emotions than a T-800 Model 101 Terminator.
Want More Career Advice: Read This: Career Advice From 10 Movie Bosses