DETROIT (WWJ) – New research from Michigan State University shows people who help co-workers too much can hurt their own job performance.

Researcher and MSU professor Russell Johnson says it may make them less effective at work.

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“The more employees devote time and attention to helping co-workers with their jobs, obviously that led them to be kind of mentally depleted or mentally fatigued and they were less able to focus on their own tasks afterward,” said Johnson.

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He says while the effect of switching gears between projects can have some fallout there can also be some benefit.

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Johnson says, when helpers are thanked or made aware of the positive results of their actions, it can minimize and may even reverse the effects of depletion.