Hell: Is belief in it good for business?

This entry is part 2 of 5 in the series Hell
Heronimus Bosch detail

WORK IN HELL? This vision of labors in Hell was envisioned by Hieronymus Bosch around the year 1500.

Hell, as traditionally imagined, is a place of eternal punishment for sins and transgressions. There’s nothing positive about being in Hell.

But, while we’re alive, belief in Hell is valuable.

Who benefits?

According to research summarized by David Briggs in his recent column about the netherworld: Hell is good for business. (Visit David’s site to take his Hell Quiz.)

Americans who absolutely believe in the existence of Hell are much more likely to say that they are satisfied with their jobs, compared to those who don’t believe in Hell. Those who strongly believe in Hell are also more committed to their organizations.

Higher job satisfaction and stronger commitment are linked to positive business outcomes. As the Baylor Religion Survey (the source of this finding) notes, such these outcomes include more organizational citizenship behaviors, higher job performance, and lower turnover or intentions to leave.

Americans who believe in Hell are also motivated to pursue excellence in the work they do. In the language of positive organizational scholarship, they are more likely to perceive their work as a “calling” than just a “job.”

What do you make of the link between belief in Hell and positive business outcomes?

Why are they linked?

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