Office workers often tiptoe around their managers for fear of saying the wrong thing or offending them. However, a new study found that people in power might actually have thicker skin than one might think.

Researchers found that people in authority positions at home of in the workplace are recover significantly quicker from mild rejection than those in lower positions. The study, presented Jan. 18 at the annual conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in New Orleans, also found that leaders are more likely to seek out social bonding opportunities even if they've been rejected.

"Powerful people appear to be better at dealing with the slings and arrows of social life, they're more buffered from the negative feelings that rejection typically elicits," lead study author Maya Kuehn, a doctoral student in psychology at UC Berkeley said in a statement.

Kuehn and her team conducted a series of five experiments that looked at power dynamics in the workplace and in intimate relationships, and focused on how power influences responses to subtle acts of rejections.

The latest study included 445 men and women between the ages of 18 and 82.

Researchers said that in one experiment, researchers assigned participants to either high-or-low level positions in the workplace. Then researchers told participants that they hadn't been invited to an office happy hour gathering. Researchers found that while low-level employees felt stung by this rejection, high-power employees were relatively unfazed and more likely to look for other social bonding activities like joining a hiking club to improve relations with their co-workers.

In another experiment, researchers told participants that they would be working with someone in either a supervisory or a subordinate role. Participants were asked to correspond with that person and received feedback that could be perceived as a snub or mild rejection.

Researchers found that those assigned to supervisory roles acted with indifference to perceived rejection from their subordinates, whereas those assigned to subordinate roles took offense to comparable rejections from their bosses.

"When rejected instead of accepted, subordinates reported lower self-esteem and greater negative emotion, but supervisors did not show an adverse reaction to rejection," Kuehn said.

Researchers conducted a similar experiment on romantic partners and found that same results. Researchers had videotaped couples discussing problem-solving tasks. Before the problem solving discussions, couples had rated each other in terms of who held the most power in their real-life relationship and how responsive their partner had been to their needs that day.

Researchers found that partners who perceived themselves as less powerful were less positive during the videotaped discussion when working on a solution with their lover. However, the more powerful partners acted more upbeat and worked harder at connecting and getting their lovers on their side.