It’s smart for a business to keep a loyal cadre of stupid people at work, according to two Swedish researchers. Writing in the Journal ofStudies, Mats Alvesson and André Spicer, professors of organization studies at Lund University, contend that “functional stupidity” is actually essential to getting things done in plenty of organizations.
Many successful businesses rely on workers who reflexively do their jobs without asking too many questions or making lots of suggestions. They’re often great team players. Smarty pants employees, on the other hand, slow things down by overanalyzing problems and proposing complicated solutions.
Alvesson and Spicer don’t advocate cultivating stupidity, just recognizing that it’s not all bad. If your business relies on innovation and creativity, go ahead and stock up on brainiacs.