Self help, business strategies, and effective ways to communicate books are ways to increase life skills. What if the same could be true about fictional books you read for fun?
As young minds grow up and progress through their education, their parents and teachers are constantly badgering them to read. Though children tend to gobble books like cookies when they first start reading in kindergarten and first grade, their passion for reading tends to dissipate through each year of their education. If high school teachers and college professors were asked, “What is the hardest thing to get your students to do?” they would most likely respond, “It is to get them to read.”
Parents and teachers are constantly telling their children and students about how reading is beneficial to them for a litany of reasons. They tell their children how reading helps them learn more, expands their minds, makes them more articulate, etc. However, they never mention the inconspicuous benefit of reading. The benefit of reading parents and teachers never mentioned during the battle to get their children and students to read is it will help them be become better employers when they get into the working world.
Fiction is a genre of reading that is an underappreciated art in this era. In modern day, people opt for true stories such as memoirs and biographies or books about black-and-white facts such as science books and history books. Modern people tend to overlook fiction because it is about people and events that never happened and most likely will never happen. However, fictional reading is the specific genre makes a better employer.
An employer constantly has to solve problems such as handling employee relations and driving clientele to the business. Effective problem solving requires critical thinking skills. Fiction helps a person hone their reasoning skills and understanding of complex problems, which fall under the umbrella of critical thinking. Fiction does this by making the reader think beyond the logical and has them look deeper into complicated issues regarding people and life.
Every employee loves an employer that is personable and relatable. When an employer reads something that stands out to them such as an inspirational quote from a fictional novel, he/she can share it with their co-workers and subordinates to start a conversation about deeper, complex issues about life, which can be applicable to the regarding their life without explaining them. When an employer has to make a tough workplace. Controversial themes and issues that are brought up in a novel such as the American dream not being achievable by everyone, which is a theme from The Great Gatsby, can drive an employer to use it as a debate topic for their subordinates. No subordinate likes an authoritarian leader, which is a leader that makes decisions decision that affects their staff, he/she can support that decision with what he/she read. The right books have the power to resonate with everyone’s lives.
No employee wants to have an employer that threatens to terminate him/her for needing days off to care for a sick loved one or needs personal time off for mental health reasons. Fiction reading helps an employer develop empathy by having him/her feel the emotions of the variety of characters in the stories. Almost everyone has been in a movie theater where he/she or the people around him/her left the theater in tears. Fictional novels and short stories can also have that effect on a person. When an employer is constantly feeling people’s emotions through reading a story, he/she is more likely to carry that empathy into the workplace when dealing with employees who are dealing with adversity in their life.
Fiction literature is an underappreciated art is because creativity is underrated in modern society. From the time a person has entered kindergarten, he/she is conditioned to think and solve problems through logic and black-and-white facts. Fiction is the work of the author’s creativity. When a person is viewing someone else’s creativity, he/she becomes inspired to create their own work of creativity. While logic is essential to solving workplace problems, creativity is even more essential to solving workplace problems. The most complex problems such as boosting sales for product that is difficult to market can easily be solved if only one person can come up with a creative solution. If an employer is constantly exposed to the creativity of a fiction author, it will become easier for him/her to take the creative approach to problem solving in the workplace.
Most people will say that their mother’s emotions rubbed off on everyone else in the household. If their mother was not happy, no one in the household was completely happy. The same concept applies to a workplace. If the leader is always stressed, the subordinate’s will feel the aura of that stress. Reading fiction enables a free source of escape, which helps the stress from the day to disintegrate. When an employer is able to go home and decompress, he/she will be revitalized and less stressed to take on the next day.
Classic literature is classic because it has universal themes that never die as the ages go on. Classic literature does not just exist in established classics such as The Great Gatsby, A Catcher in the Rye, Grapes of Wrath, and a study guide for 1984, it exists in a plethora of books that are on the bookshelves of libraries and bookstores. These classic fiction stories have the power to make an employer a better leader and a better person by improving his/her critical thinking, interaction with subordinates, empathy, and creativity. It will also help him/her reduce stress. If parents and teachers instilled this inconspicuous benefit to their children and students from an early age, more young people would be invigorated to read.
November 20, 2017
November 20, 2017
Stories by Mark Palmer