The Wall Street Journal is reporting that a new Japanese study shows lazy workers are a key component to an organizations survival. The study looked at eight different colonies of 150 ants each and found that 20 to 30 percent of the ants were inactive while others performed the necessary tasks, like egg cleaning and larval care. The inactive ants were critical because they replaced others who grew fatigued, enabling uninterrupted care of the colony. The lazy ants were labeled a “bet-hedging strategy” because of decreasing short-term productivity. And how does this apply to the human workforce? Researchers said all existing long-lasting societies should be adapted to long-term sustainability using bet hedging or preparing reservoirs of lazy workers.
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