Prior research attributes the positive effects of passion on professional success to intrapersonal characteristics. We propose that interpersonal processes are also critical because observers confer status on and support those who express passion. These interpersonal benefits of expressing passion are, however, contingent on several factors related to the expresser, perceiver, and context. Six studies, including entrepreneurial pitches from Dragons' Den and two pre-registered experiments, establish three key findings. First, observers conferred status onto and increased their support for individuals who express passion; importantly, expressing passion affected how admired—but not how accepted—someone was. Second, these effects were weaker when passion was expressed in an inappropriate manner/context, and when observers disagreed with the target of expresser's passion. Third, in competitive contexts, expressing passion became threatening and decreased the support individuals received from others. These results demonstrate that passion's effects travel, in part, through the gravitational pull exerted by expressing passion.

J.M. Jachimowicz, C. To, S. Agasi, S. Cote, and Adam Galinsky
Journal Article
Publication Date
Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes

Full Citation

Jachimowicz, J.M., C. To, S. Agasi, S. Cote, and Adam Galinsky
. “The gravitational pull of expressing passion: When and how expressing passion elicits status conferral and support from others.”
Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
, (July 01, 2019):