During a break between classes, I offered some MBA students the chance to make a little extra money. Some would have a job of sitting in the classroom for five minutes doing nothing, absolutely nothing – no reading, no listening to music; just staring straight ahead. For this effortless job, they would receive $2.50.
Others would have the job of sitting in the same room for those same five minutes, but rather than staring into space they would be asked to solve word puzzles, forming four-word sentences out of five-word combinations. For example, the words “eagle apple majestic soars” could be turned into the sentence: the majestic eagle soars.
The question for the students was: how much would they need to be paid to unscramble sentences for them to prefer that job over the easier one… (Read more at the RWJF Human Capital Blog)