Did you know that Leonardo da Vinci wrote the world’s first-ever resume? How about that garbage collectors and bartenders are more likely to die on the job than cops? Or that the average office worker spends a full 50 minutes a day looking for lost files?
There’s nothing like work and the workplace for stirring up quirky tidbits. Here’s some more:
Jobs’ first jobs: Last month, a job application filled messily in by one Steve Jobs in 1973—three years before he’d found Apple Computer Company—surfaced on the auction scene. The document, on which a young Jobs has acknowledged a driver’s licence but responded to the question about access to transportation with: “Possible but not probable”—sold for an amazing $175,000.
An efficient fall: Workers are most productive in October, says a two-year analysis of global employment data. Also on Mondays (though other data, curiously, identify the first day of the week as the most popular sick day).
Going Dutch: Workers in the Netherlands, where the four-day work week is pretty much standard, toil an average of just 29 hours a week, the shortest work week in the world (and a day-and-a-half less demanding than in Canada).
The attraction of placement: A study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology in 2017 found that the better looking a person is, the more likely they are to be recommended for a desirable job, such as manager or project director, and that their less comely comrades will be matched with less desirable posts, such as warehouse worker and customer-service rep. “People perceive attractive individuals to feel more entitled to good outcomes than unattractive individuals,” a co-author explained.
First impressions rule: Of 2,000 bosses recently surveyed about their HR practices, 33% claimed they know whether they’d hire a candidate within the first 90 seconds of the interview. Turnoffs include: being too fashionable/trendy (70%), failure to make eye contact (67%), not being knowledgeable about the company (47%), lack of confidence/smile (38%), bad posture (33%), weak handshake (26%) and crossing arms over chest during interview (21%).
Haul out these entertaining morsels to delight your comrades at your next coffee break. Only keep your arms at your sides.