Doug Kass of ‘The Street’ has written an interesting article on negativity and markets where he makes five main points as to why they are intrinsically positive or optimistic:
• Statistically, stocks over the long run tend to rise (on average) year over year.
• The mass of the investors are positive for the future
• Executives are chosen to succeed and are measured by rising profits, dividends etc
• Demographic growth
• And governments run countries for economic growth

Here is a link to the full article.

This is equally important in the workplace and specifically when looking for a job. It can be positively useful to have a negative view in the office, someone who can point out some of the problems that will need to be tackled and who can be realistic in appraising a job or project.

When looking for a job the situation is slightly different. The potential employer already has a problem and they are looking for someone with the skills and abilities to sort it out. As such if you come along to an interview and point out all the problems that they know they have you will not be the favoured candidate. Now it requires the same analytical skills but they need to be presented in a ‘can do’ way. That is you showing that you have answers to the problems.

Of course being unduly optimistic can get you into a bad situation just as easily so it is really important to get to the real truth, that is a balanced version which takes account of the positives and the negatives, and then address the situation with energy.

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