OPINION: The ‘Midwest-nice’ phenomena shouldn’t be taken for granted – Indiana Daily Student
I had just made my third trip around a block on Eighth street in New York City. Not wanting to circle it another time, I decided to ask someone for directions. I turned to the first person I saw, and before I could fully get out where I needed to go, they brushed past me and said, “not now.” Two other people also continued walking after I asked.So I took a guess, headed two blocks north and went on with my day. But I couldn’t help but think about how in most Midwest cities I’d visited, people were more than happy to give directions, especially to those who you can tell are from out of town.
…Many articles on this topic praise the “facade” of Midwest-nice behavior while criticizing the passive aggressiveness that stems from constantly being cordial. Tara Carr, a small business development director at University of Wisconsin Green Bay, said the Midwest-nice behavior can have a negative effect on a work environment.
“Midwesterners are more likely to avoid speaking to others in a perceived negative way, rather than deal with the issues directly,” Carr said. “This passive aggressive behavior in the workplace can erupt in many ways: consistent negative attitude, being disruptive, blaming others for mistakes, making sarcastic comments.”