The old version of the evidence was the struggle the late Joan Rivers had with her nasty humor. Her career could have been bigger, with fewer ups and downs had her comedy been less mean-spirited.
The norm for female comics then and probably now was the wholesome Mary Tyler Moore kind. The humor was generated by Mary Richards' struggle to be nice versus inconvenient realities like the office pest. Americana is not ready for a female Lenny Bruce.
The new version could be the nasty trouble Nasty Girl has encountered. The Chief Executive Officer is Sophia Amoruso. The ethos of the culture was positioned as not exactly nice. At Tech Crunch, Sarah Buhr reports that sources told her the startup laid off between 20 and 27 employees. Those include public relations staff.
In addition, Buhr notes that on Glassdoor, "only 30 percent of employees would recommend a friend work for the company ... Another former employee gave the company just two stars on Glassdoor and said the company had spent too much money on things like decor instead of salaries." Here is that analysis from TC.
The strategy of nice isn't, of course, effective in every culture. For instance, in the high-paying, high-status jobs of BigLaw and Wall Street, nice would likely be interpreted as a sign of weakness in leadership. Though employees might grouse, they understand the value of what they are getting out of the deal, stay, and give it their all.
In general, however, nice is turning out to win the day, ranging from sales figures to employee commitment. Actually, it seems to be becoming the strategy among struggling businesses. Staples is an example. Both in Connecticut and here in Arizona, where I relocated my communications boutique, the Easy Tech staff do backflips to keep my computer up and running. I can swing up any time and they stop what they are doing and diagnose the problem. For the solution, an Easy Tech rep even drove to my home in Tucson. That was nice.
After the brutal hardening of attitude some of us went through during The Great Recession, we need to re-learn the fundamentals of nice. For that I am attending an offbeat Course in Miracles. A central tenet is that when we are upset, the problem is within us. The other party is just the trigger. That mindset also permeates Buddhist teachings. So, in addressing the whatever, we can be nice. Attack is unnecessary.