For well-educated graduates who earned their degrees in a recession, rough beginnings often make for a better ending or at least greater satisfaction. This conclusion comes from findings by Emily Bianchi, assistant professor of organization and management at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. The paper is titled The Bright Side of Bad Times: The Affective Advantages of Entering the Workforce in a Recession.
This research was cited recently as more work has been done to determine the damage done to mental states from recessions and booms in the economy.As reported by The Atlantic:
We know what effect recessions and booms tend to have on our bank accounts. But what about our feelings and wellbeing? The equation should be simple, right? Recession = sad. Economic boom = happy! But it’s a bit more complicated than that.
Recent research says that those who graduate during recessions are happier in the long run—satisfied with being employed unlike boom-time graduates who wonder if they should be doing better. Emily Bianchi, associate professor at Emory’s Goizueta Business School, likens this to research showing that bronze medalists at the Olympics are happier than silver medalists (who wonder why they didn’t win gold).
To learn more about Bianchi’s research, read her article in the Harvard Business Review.
About Emily Bianchi
Emily Bianchi joined the Goizueta Business School in 2011. She holds a PhD in Management from Columbia University and a BA in Psychology from Harvard University. Bianchi’s research investigates how entering adulthood in a recession influences later attitudes and behaviors as well as how current economic conditions affect interpersonal interactions, social support, and cooperation. Prior to graduate school, Bianchi was a Senior Consultant for Booz Allen Hamilton.