Working Papers

Research and Insights from the Center for Effective Organizations

Organization Development and Talent Management: Beyond the Triple Bottom Line

Edward Lawler III (CEO) shares how there is a growing movement to broaden the definition of organizational effectiveness. Fewer and fewer countries and societies are willing to accept that financial performance is all that matters when it comes to organizational effectiveness.

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Workplace Fatigue is a Systems Problem

Alec Levenson (CEO) explains that workplace fatigue is traditionally treated almost exclusively as an individual issue, and it certainly is the case that individual differences lead some individuals to experience fatigue and, ultimately, to burn out more than others. Yet not enough attention has been paid to factors arising from work design and organization strategy.

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Human Resource Consulting

The field of human resources (HR) consulting is large, extremely diverse, and highly dynamic. This introductory update to the 2005 chapter by Gerald E. Ledford (CEO), Edward Lawler III (CEO), Susan A. Mohrman (CEO) provides an updated view of the HR consulting marketplace and the types of individuals and consulting firms that occupy it, as well as the organizational actors who purchase and consume HR consulting services.

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Building Human Capital Advantage in Initial Public Offerings (IPOs): The Effect on Long-Term Firm Survival and Performance

Using survey data collected from the firms’ leadership teams in the beginning of the year following their IPO, Theresa M. Welbourne (CEO) and Kyle Gibson (University of Nebraska-Lincoln) test the effects of their approaches to human capital on long-term (10-year) firm survival and performance.

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Measuring and Maximizing the Impact of Talent Development

Alec Levenson addresses the issue that talent development is critical for organizational success. Certainly, if you don’t have the right talent then your business strategy will fail. But what does having the right talent really mean? How do we know when we have it? And if it’s something different than what we’ve always thought it to be, how do we go about developing it?

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The Case for Employee Resource Groups: A Review and Social Identity Theory-Based Research Agenda

Despite their prevalence in the business world, there has been a scarce amount of theorizing and research focused on ERGs. To help facilitate the development of this work, the authors (Theresa M. Welbourne, Skylar Rolf, and Steven Schlachter) introduce a theoretical framework using social identity theory, as well as propositions that can serve to spur additional research on a critical topic for today’s businesses.

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Using Workforce Analytics to Improve Strategy Execution

In this article Alec Levenson (CEO) introduces an approach to conducting workforce analytics that is designed to improve strategy execution and organizational effectiveness through the application of systems diagnostics.

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Why High Performance Work Design Trumps Employee Engagement

In this article Alec Levenson (CEO) takes an in-depth look at high performance, how it’s related to and different from engagement, and what leaders have to do to develop and sustain high performance.

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Shouldn’t You Be Working Right Now?

John Boudreau (CEO) share how most HR and management systems presume that maximizing meritocracy and differentiation between performance levels is always a good thing. Leaders would do well to question that assumption, and to become as savvy about performance differentiation as they are about differentiation when it comes to customers, financial investments and operations.

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Building Management Processes to Support Agility

Christopher G. Worley (CEO), Thomas Williams (PwC Strategy LLP), Edward E. Lawler III (CEO) explain how agile organizations continuously adjust to changing circumstances by, for example, launching new products or eliminating old ones, entering new markets or exiting underperforming ones, or building new capabilities. This requires management processes that can support adaptability over time.

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Aligning Research and the Current Practice of Performance Management

Gerald E. Ledford, Jr. (CEO), George Benson (U Texas), Edward E. Lawler III (CEO) discuss how the debate over eliminating performance ratings addresses many important theoretical and practical issues.

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A Study of Cutting-Edge Performance Management Practices: Ongoing Feedback, Ratingless Reviews, and Crowd-Sourced Feedback

Three cutting edge performance management practices – ratingless reviews, ongoing feedback, and crowd-sourced feedback – have received tremendous attention from the business press, but there has been almost no research that can guide the design and implementation of these practices.

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