We mentioned previously that some researchers have studied

Question:

Case Incident 2 Can You Read Emotions from Faces?

We mentioned previously that some researchers have studied whether facial expressions reveal true emotions—the psychologist Paul Ekman is the best known. These researchers have distinguished real smiles (so-called Duchenne smiles, named after French physician Guillaume Duchenne) from ―fake‖ smiles. Duchenne found genuine smiles raised not only the corners of the mouth (easily faked) but also cheek and eye muscles (much more difficult to fake). So, one way to determine whether someone is genuinely happy or amused is to look at the muscles around the upper cheeks and eyes—if the person‘s eyes are smiling or twinkling, the smile is genuine. Ekman and his associates have developed similar methods to detect other emotions, such as anger, disgust, and distress. According to Ekman, the key to identifying real emotions is to focus on micro-expressions, or those facial muscles we cannot easily manipulate. Dan Hill has used these techniques to study the facial expressions of CEOs and found they vary dramatically not only in their Duchenne smiles but also in the degree to which they display positive versus negative facial expressions. Below is Hill‘s analysis of the facial expressions of some prominent male executives: Jeff Bezos, Amazon 51% positive Michael Dell, Dell Computers 47% positive Larry Ellison, Oracle 0% positive Bill Gates, Microsoft 73% positive Phil Knight, Nike 67% positive Donald Trump, The Trump Organization 16% positive It is interesting to note that these individuals, all of whom are successful in various ways, have such different levels of positive facial expressions. It also raises the question: Is a smile from Larry Ellison worth more than a smile from Bill Gates?

Questions

1. Most research suggests we are not very good at detecting fake emotions, and we think we‘re much better than we are. Do you believe training would improve your ability to detect emotional displays in others?

2. Determine whether the information in this case could help you tell whether a person‘s smile is genuine.

3. Is your impression of the facial expressions of the eight business leaders consistent with what the researcher found? If not, why do you think your views might be at odds with his?

4. Assuming you could become better at detecting the real emotions in facial expressions, do you think it would help your career? Why or why not?

Answer:

1. Most research suggests we are not very good at detecting fake emotions, and we think we‘re much better than we are. Do you believe training would improve your ability to detect emotional displays in others?

Yes, I believe training would improve the ability to detect emotional displays. This is because, if we are trained, we would realize where we actually lag, and this realization would help identify those loopholes in our judgments. Moreover, the human mind if trained, can be one of the best machines.

2. Determine whether the information, in this case, could help you tell whether a person‘s smile is genuine.

Yes, the information provided here clearly identifies what we fail to notice while noticing someone’s smile. These minute details are generally missed by people while trying to observe if the smile is genuine.

3. Is your impression of the facial expressions of the eight business leaders consistent with what the researcher found? If not, why do you think your views might be at odds with his?

The researchers claim that a person’s success rate is similar in proportion to a person’s positive feedback. But as seen in the research, bill gates shows 0% positive feedback. At the moment, he is the richest person, and if there was a direct correlation between smile and success, bill gates wouldn’t have been where he is.

4. Assuming you could become better at detecting real emotions in facial expressions, do you think it would help your career? Why or why not?

Yes, it would help my career. As important is detecting real emotions, so is presenting real emotions important. In my career, it is important to present real emotions, such that my bosses do not determine that my emotions are fake, so as to develop any negative feedback. Also, when I might be in a higher position, it is important that I should be able to differentiate between the real and fake emotions of my subordinates.

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