Why Presidents Seem So Tall: Psychologists Find Powerful People Feel Taller Than They Really Are – ABC News
“Now that we have jobs,” Goncalo recalled in a telephone interview, “the rooms feel smaller.”
The two suspected that having jobs gave them a feeling of power, which made them feel literally bigger, and they toyed with the idea of finding out if that was actually the case. Not much happened initially, because such a study would take years, but a national disaster brought their question to center stage.
As oil from the deadly 2010 BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico inched towards the shores along the gulf, BP’s chairman, Carl-Henric Svanberg, uttered this statement, which became the first sentence of their study:
“We care about the small people.”
That statement “generated a firestorm of controversy when he twice referred to the victims of the largest oil spill in United States history as the ‘small people,’” the study, to be published in Psychological Science, notes.
“That quote really got us going,” Goncalo said. It suggested that self-deception “is a real phenomenon that actually happens among powerful people.”
Strange Random Power Quote:
- Large and in Charge: Powerful People Overestimate Their Own Height (sciencedaily.com)
- To Boost Business, Let Employees Unleash Their Inner Napoleons (fastcompany.com)
- Power Makes People Feel Taller (livescience.com)
- Powerful people think they’re taller than they really are, claim researchers (dailymail.co.uk)