Use the Organizational Nonsense Perception Scale to Decide If You Should Quit Your Job

Most of us worked for a company that was, to put it bluntly, full of crap . For those who have encountered a number of similar environments over the years, the ability to detect them is almost a sixth sense. But now there is a useful framework for quantifying office bullshit — it will help you assess the types you are dealing with so that you are better prepared when deciding whether to stay with you or GTFO.

What is an organization’s bullshit scale?

Spotting office crap has always been more art than science. But thanks to research that was recently published in the journal Psychological Reports , there is now essentially a quantitative scale that can measure whether your office crap needs a shovel or a bulldozer.

This new way of measuring office bullshit, which they define as “individuals in an organization making statements without regard to the truth,” aptly called the Organizational Nonsense Perception Scale. (It looks like the authors themselves aren’t full of bullshit, which is always a promising sign.)

Office bullshit has three distinct factors

Office crap was found to be made up of three separate factors: “respect for the truth,” “boss,” and “meaningless language.” The first factor, “respect for the truth,” is management’s willingness to tolerate communication that demonstrates disregard for facts. The second factor, “boss,” has to do with the senior management’s willingness to tolerate this nonsense, while the third factor, “meaningless language,” has to do with the prevalence of corporate jargon.

As study author Caitlin Ferreira, professor of marketing at Luleå University of Technology, explained to PsyPost :

Together with my co-authors, we have identified three main pillars of BS in the workplace. First, respect for truth is about the degree to which corporate culture places importance on evidence and fact when making decisions. The second dimension, the boss, talks about the anchoring of BS in the workplace by hierarchical structures within the organization, suggesting that management can play a key role in spreading BS. The final dimension, the BS language, highlights some of the languages ​​commonly used by those who perpetuate BS in the workplace. It is usually exclusive language, such as acronyms and jargon, which often cause people to question their own understanding and otherwise prevent others from making meaningful contributions to the conversation or expressing concerns.

The scale measures office bullshit as well as employee awareness of it.

To test the organizational bullshit perception scale, the authors developed factors to measure these three categories and then tested it on two separate samples of employees from different industries. While the scale is still in its infancy, it promises to be able to quantify not only bullshit, but the ability of employees to recognize a situation as it really is.

Admitting nonsense to a company may help cut down on it, but even if it isn’t, understanding the structure will help you better recognize the types of situations you are dealing with and better decide if your company’s culture can be saved. So next time you get stuck in an endless meeting, listening to your colleagues say meaningless words and your boss nods in agreement, rest assured that what is happening is really bullshit.


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