Research Grants Awarded 2010-2005

Research Grants Awarded 2010-2005


The SHRM Foundation awarded 38 research grants between 2005 and 2010 that span topics of human resource management organizational influence, executive coaching, work-family support programs and HR professionals as team leaders.


Total Funding Awarded: $500,235

The Future of HR: Longitudinal Study by John Boudreau, Ph.D., University of Southern California and Edward E. Lawler, III, Ph.D., University of Southern California

Funded: June 2010  Completed: June 2012

Executive Summary:
This is the Center for Effective Organizations’ (CEO’s) sixth study of the human resources (HR) function in large corporations. Like the previous studies, it measures whether the HR function is changing and whether it is effective. All of our research studies have focused on whether the HR function is changing to become an effective strategic partner. The present study also analyzed how organizations can more effectively manage their human capital. It gathered data from many of the same corporations that we studied in 1995, 1998, 2001, 2004 and 2007. Thus it allows us to compare data from our earlier studies to data we collected in 2010. For the first time we collected data from multiple countries (Australia, China, Canada, the United Kingdom, and other European countries) so that we can determine how corporations in the U.S. and other countries differ.

Human resource management in multinational companies: Effects of national, organizational and professional culture on HR practices and organizational performance by Yitzak Fried, Ph.D., Syracuse University, Hilla Peretz, Ph.D., Ort Braude College, Israel, and Shlomit Kaminka, Ph.D., College of Management Academic Studies, Israel

Funded: November 2010     Completed: December 2012 

Executive Summary: The past few decades have been characterized by a growing trend toward globalization, resulting in an increasing number of global and multinational business endeavors.  Issues such as maintaining a balance between the “home-based” culture and “local” cultures, maintaining high quality performance standards across different locations and cultures, and maintaining productive collaboration between units in different locations, have become critical for business success in this global economy. The literature clearly suggests that an important mechanism that helps organization to be competitive is its human resource (HR) management practices. However, we know little about which human resource practices and which characteristics of these practices fit organizations in multinational companies. A key question is whether HR practices should be similar in all subsidiaries of a multinational corporation across the different contexts these subsidiaries operate in, or should these practices differ depending on the particular context of each subsidiary. 

In the present study we have attempted to address this issue. Following the contingency approach, we specifically examined whether, and to what degree, the effectiveness of multinational companies is contingent on cultural context. In the present study our aim was to explore: (a) the differential effect  of three cultural dimensions (national, organizational, and professional) on psychological, behavioral, and performance outcomes; (b) how the level of congruency among these three cultures (national, organizational, and professional) are related to the focal psychological, behavioral and organizational performance outcomes; (c) how national, organizational, and professional cultures are related to employees’ preferences for different human resource practices; (d) how national, organizational, and professional cultures are related to the actual characteristics of human resource practices implemented by organizations; and (e) how the level of congruency between employees’ preferences for HR practices and the actual implemented HR practices affect psychological, behavioral and organizational performance outcomes.

We examined these issues using new data that were collected from eight global multinational companies, in 19 different countries (USA, Israel, India, Ireland, Italy, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Romania, Serbia, Russia, Poland, Czech Republic, Australia, Uruguay, Mexico and Argentina), and across 59 subsidiaries (a total of 1631 employees and HR managers). In addition we conducted qualitative interviews with 11 HR managers.

The Motivational Leadership Training Program by Marylène Gagné, Ph.D., Concordia University

Funded: March 2010     Completed: December 2012

Executive Summary: Because organizations want to know how to motivate and engage their employees in a healthy fashion (i.e., preserving or enhancing their well-being), and because a large number of organizations send their managers to leadership training, it is essential to conduct research that will help us understand the influence of leadership training programs on employee motivation, performance, and well-being. 

The Motivational Leadership Training Program examined the mediational role of work motivation in the relationship between leadership training and changes in employee performance and well-being.  Grounded in the theory of full-range leadership and self-determination theory, this training program offers an additional training tool to organizations so that they can improve managerial effectiveness.  The training program was tested through a quasi-experimental design including pre/post-tests to evaluate if it had an impact on subordinate motivation, performance, and well-being. 

Transformational leadership was the focus of this training program.  It consists as acting as a role model, providing meaning and challenge, and considering individual needs.  Training also focused on using transformational leadership to fulfill psychological needs for competence, autonomy, and relatedness, in order to increase autonomous work motivation (which means to do something out of enjoyment and meaning as opposed to rewards and guilt).

Unhealthy Balance?  The Consequences of Work and Family Demands and Resources on Employees' Health and Health Care Consumption by Theresa Glomb, Ph.D., Jean Abraham, Ph.D. and Erin Kelly, Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Funded: June 2010     Completed: September 2013

Executive Summary: Given current demographic and economic trends, there is growing interest in understanding the effects of the demands of work (e.g., work hours, job demands), family (e.g., children, marriage), and the resulting inter-role conflicts on workers’ health. Understanding these issues is valuable for employers given the large financial implications associated with health insurance provision and illness-related productivity losses.

Although prior reviews suggest the adverse effect of work and family demands on psychological and physical health, they also suggest existing research is narrow in scope and has important methodological limitations. Specifically, research typically (a) is based on small samples from single organizations that lack diversity in demographic and family structural characteristics, (b) examines health outcomes using narrowly defined conditions or self-reports of overall health, (c) does not examine health-related behaviors such as regular exercise and (d) primarily uses cross-sectional data.

To address these limitations, we integrate the literatures from organizational sciences, with its detailed attention to work-family conflict, and health economics, with its detailed examination of medical conditions and expenditures, to investigate the health-related toll of work and family demands on employees. We examine the relationship of work and family demands (captured using structural measures of these concepts) on workers’ health measured by the presence of stress-related conditions including (1) hypertension, (2) gastrointestinal disorders, and (3) anxiety or mood disorders, and workers’ health behaviors, measured by (4) lack of regular exercise and (5) smoking. We also examine health care utilization associated with these conditions in the form of office based visits and prescriptions.

The Impact of Explanations to Applicants: Reactions, Consumer Behavior, and Employee Outcomes by Autumn D. Krauss, Ph.D., Portland State University Donald M. Truxillo, Ph.D., Portland State University and Talya N. Bauer, Ph.D., Portland State University

Funded: November 2010     Completed: December 2013

Executive Summary: Online employment applications, often integrating pre-employment assessments, are standard operating procedure for most organizations these days, particularly for those in industries such as retail, grocery, and hospitality, who are hiring large quantities of field employees and need a quick and cost-effective way to screen and prioritize candidates.  The challenge comes when this type of hiring process makes applicants feel like they are not given personal consideration, often not even getting the chance to speak to an actual person about their qualifications. This potentially isolating and sterile experience can leave a bad taste in applicants’ mouths, always a concern for companies but even more so when their applicants are often their customers. The crux of the problem is how to create a favorable and personalized applicant experience without it being too resource-intensive or costly for organizations to implement within their high-volume and automated hiring process.

This research program explored the potential benefit of a relatively easy and low cost way to improve individuals’ reactions to an online application process, namely by the presentation of explanations to applicants.  In this field experiment, real applicants to various retail and grocery store-based positions completed an online application process, including a pre-employment assessment.

During the application, they were asked a series of questions about their experience with the online application process and associated assessment. In one condition, they did not receive any explanation – they just continued on with their application process after they answered the questions. In another condition, they received a static explanation, a short statement that conveyed the company’s appreciation for their application and assured the applicant that it would be thoughtfully considered.

We know from organizational psychology research that being generally sensitive to applicants during the selection process results in more positive applicant reactions, so our thinking here was that at least showing some sincere consideration during the selection process would give a boost to applicants’ perceptions of their online application experience. In the last condition, applicants received a tailored explanation to the specific concerns, if any, that they expressed in their survey. For instance, if an applicant indicated that they were skeptical about whether the questions on the application were actually relevant to the job to which they were applying, the next page would dynamically present a short explanation describing how current employees in the job had indicated that the questions were relevant to their work.

Here are the different types of concerns that applicants could have raised in their survey – if applicants indicated that any of these bothered them, they were presented with an explanation that was written to address their specific concern(s): whether  people’s responses on the assessment actually predict whether they are good employees on-the-job, how long the online selection process takes, how the information that they share on the application will be handled, meaning whether it will be stored securely and remain confidential, whether the questions that are asked on the assessment are relevant to the job, whether they have had a sufficient opportunity to show their strengths during the online application process, and whether the questions asked on the assessment were not intrusive or inappropriate.

We also had the applicants answer some questions about their perceptions of the company at the beginning of the application and then also asked them some other questions about their overall reactions to the application process when they were just submitting it.  We then followed up with a small group of the overall study sample a couple months after they applied, some of which had been hired by the company and others of which had not.  For select applicants to one of the participating companies, we even sent out some coupons for groceries and tracked whether they used them as a way to see if people’s applicant experiences impacted their likelihood to be customers afterwards.

How Does Human Resource Management Influence Organizational Outcomes? A Meta-Analytic Investigation of the Mediating Mechanism by David P. Lepak, Ph.D., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey and Kaifeng Jiang, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Funded: November 2010     Completed: February 2012 

Executive Summary: With increasingly intense global competition, companies have recognized the importance of human resources in obtaining sustained competitive advantages and have increased their focus on how human resource management (HRM) practices can help achieve organizational goals. Strong links between HRM practices and organizational outcomes have already been associated with such positive outcomes as greater employee commitment, lower turnover, higher productivity and quality, better service and safety performance, and better financial performance. However, precisely how HRM practices result in these positive outcomes is still unclear.

Jiang, Lepak, Hu, and Baer sought to determine how HRM practices affect important organizational outcomes. They did this by analyzing the results of over 100 studies involving over 30,000 organizations. The result of their work offers several insights and practical advice for HR professionals. 

Predicting Ten Years of Worker Career Success from Employee Development Behavior by Todd Maurer, Ph.D., Georgia State University

Funded: 2010     Completed: September 2012

Executive Summary: This study investigated predictors of career success over a ten year period in a diverse sample of 289 full-time workers drawn from across many jobs and industries in the U.S. workforce.  A rich set of predictors from literature on employee development behavior was used to predict several career outcomes.  Human resource practitioners sometimes consider outcome variables such as the number of promotions workers attain, the salary level they achieve, their job satisfaction and career satisfaction to be critical concerns with potentially significant value to human resource management.  In that vein, a greater understanding of the predictors of these outcomes is potentially valuable to the HR literature. We discuss the findings of this study that relate to these outcomes below. 

Support for employee development: Unique and accumulating effects.  Support for development in the situation surrounding the employee includes support for development by other people including supervisors, coworkers, and even clients, along with the availability of development and learning resources at work.  In this study, early support for development by one's employer ten years prior contributed to current pay level and job and career satisfaction, and a longitudinal trend of increasing or accumulating support over the ten year period further contributed to job and career satisfaction beyond that early support.  This contextual/situational variable had consistent effects not accounted for by a variety of human capital and socio-demographic variables, suggesting the unique importance of this construct to success. 

This finding adds to prior research suggesting such organizational support correlates with employee attitudes and behavior in the short-term—here uniquely linking it to long-term career success over ten years. This finding reinforces the value of efforts in this area by organizations to provide support for development and by employees who place importance on working in such organizations.  That is, although there is a notion in the literature that supporting employee development can be effective in enhancing immediately-resulting employee attitudes and can affect recruiting and retention in a positive way, there has not been research linking such organizational support to employee career success in the long-term as done in the present study. The present results add new and valuable data to the conversation about the effects of supporting employee and career development in organizations. 

There was also an effect for an increasing trend in employee development activity involvement over the ten year period in relation to job promotions over that period.  There could be worthwhile and important outcomes from developing oneself via employee development activities.  Thus, while early support relates to the extrinsic outcome of salary achieved and satisfaction, an ongoing trend of development involvement related to promotions.  The development support seems to provide a foundation and momentum toward pay and satisfaction achieved, while the ongoing development involvement provides a contribution to ascension/promotion.   


Total Funding Awarded: $304,850

Beyond Mentoring: Shaping Expectations and Career Success Through the Relational Models of Developmental Network Dyads by Judith R. Gordon, Ph.D., Boston College and Richard Cotton, Appalachian State University

Funded: June 2009     Completed: August 2011

Executive Summary: Mentoring is a widely-used organizational intervention for developing leaders, enhancing career development, improving performance, and increasing employee satisfaction. Yet, mentoring programs have a mixed record of success. In today’s dynamic career environment, mentors and protégés frequently change organizations and roles, prompting individuals to cultivate a mentoring constellation or developmental network of individuals inside and outside the organization from whom they receive career, psychosocial, and role modeling support that contributes to their career success.

Rather than assuming reciprocity as the basis of network relationships, the investigators sought to understand the nature of these developer-protégé relationships using four models from relational models theory:

  1. Communal Sharing, where the relationship is primarily based on what the parties have in common, such as friend and kin relationships;
  2. Equality Matching, where relationships are primarily based on alleviating imbalances in the relationship, such as co-worker relationships; 
  3. Authority Ranking, where relationships are primarily based on differences in experience, age, status, or rank, such as manager-subordinate and formal mentor-protégé relationships, and
  4. Market Pricing, where relationships are primarily based on ratios of inputs to outputs in terms of cost, effort, time or money, such as coach-trainee or supervisor-temporary contract worker relationships.
This study identified key developer roles, analyzed the relational model and support expectations associated with these roles, assessed the association between different amounts of relational models in an individual’s developmental network and career success, and explored how particular developmental relationships evolve over time.

Executive Coaching in Technology Supported Environments: Understanding and Guiding Effective Virtual Leadership Coaching Relationships by Stephen Zaccaro, Ph.D., George Mason University, Gina Hernez-Broome, Center for Creative Leadership, Lisa Boyce, George Mason University, Tiffani R. Chen, George Mason University, Tracy C. McCausland, George Mason University and Gia A. DiRosa, George Mason University

Funded: March 2009     Completed: November  2011

Executive Summary: While coaching has become an increasingly prominent tool for leadership development, systematic research on predictors, processes and outcomes of coaching is substantially lacking, with the result that the practice of coaching has outpaced its research base.  In this research effort, we focused on five sets of antecedents:  client attributes (cognitive flexibility, metacognitive skills, self regulation skills, social perceptiveness/empathy, emotional intelligence, leadership orientation, motivation to learn, learning goal orientation, extraversion, and conscientiousness/responsibility), coach attributes (cognitive flexibility, metacognitive skills, process regulation skills), the match or fit between coach and client attributes (cultural background, cognitive capacities), client training, and the medium of coaching (face-to-face versus electronically-mediated communication). 

We examined these antecedents across four studies.  Two of these studies utilized an archival data set from an international leadership development organization.  The first of these was an exploratory study that examined three sets of client attributes and their influences in a blended coaching medium (mixing face-to-face and electronically mediated coaching).  The participants in this study were 1330 managers and executives.  The second study used the same data set to examine coach client cultural homology, or the match of cultural backgrounds, on coaching outcomes.  Both studies were treated as exploratory because of significant limitations in the dataset.  The third investigation was a field study of coach-client cognitive heterogeneity as a driver of coaching outcomes.  The participants in this study were 52 coaches and 172 managers and executives.  Also in this study, a subset of 11 coaches and 28 clients volunteered to have their sessions in an online program (Second Life©), allowing us to explore differences between two coaching media.  The final study was a laboratory experiment that used academic coaching as a context, and was designed to test the effects of coaching medium and client training on coaching outcomes.  This study, which included 133 undergraduate students as participants, also examined client attributes that contribute to coaching success.   

Resume Fraud: Investigations of the Antecedents and Consequences of Fabrication, Embellishment, and Omission by Brian Dineen, Ph.D., University of Kentucky Research Foundation, Christine Henle, Ph.D., Colorado State University and Michelle Duffy, Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Funded: June 2009     Completed: February 2012

Executive Summary:
Resume fraud, defined as job seekers’ intentional inclusion of false information (fabrication), overstatement of otherwise accurate information (embellishment), or omission of relevant information (omission) on resumes in an effort to deceive, is a growing problem for organizations. As a result, it is important to understand the antecedents (e.g., applicant personality, social pressures) and outcomes (e.g., increased likelihood of getting interviews) of resume fraud so that HR professionals can determine if they should invest resources to prevent or detect this behavior and which methods are more likely to be effective.

Drawing on self-regulatory theory, we conducted two studies of job seekers to determine the factors that predict the likelihood of engaging in resume fraud and whether these factors differ depending upon whether job seekers are early in their job search process or have been searching for a longer time. We also sought to determine if the factors that predict resume fraud could also result in increased job search effort in the form of more job applications submitted. In a third study, we surveyed recruiters to find out why they believe job seekers commit resume fraud and if these reasons differ from job seekers’. We also used attribution theory to assess whether recruiters attribute the causes of resume fraud as: (1) due to internal characteristics of job seekers versus external factors (e.g., social pressures), (2) controllable, and (3) stable over time versus temporary. Finally, we examined if these attributions impact how likely recruiters are to reject applicants for resume fraud.

Virtually out of site but do managers mind? Impacts of Manager's Perceived Power on Telecommuting Feasibility and Effectiveness by Sumita Raghuram, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, Batia Wiesenfeld, Ph.D., New York University and Ravi S. Gajendran, Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Funded: November 2009     Completed: March 2013

Executive Summary: Distributed work (as virtual teams, telecommuting, and virtual work) is becoming increasingly prevalent in organizations all over the world.  It offers flexibility to both employers and employees in how work is organized across spatially distributed sites. However, the feasibility and effectiveness of distributed work depends upon supervisory support and their leadership style. We set out to examine the feasibility of distributed work through several studies.

The first study examined the evolution of distributed work over a period of 11 years (Raghuram, S., Tuertcher, P. & Garud, R., 2010. Mapping the field of virtual work: A co-citation analysis. Information Systems Research, 4, 983-999). This study helps us a) understand the intellectual base from which this field has emerged, (b) explore how this field has evolved over time, and (c) identify clusters of research themes that have emerged over time and the relationships between them. Specifically, we use co-citation analysis of research published in all social science disciplines to map the field at three points in time – 1995, 2000 and 2006. Our longitudinal analysis reveals that distributed work that started off as a movement towards cutting down real estate expenses and reducing commute times is now popular as globally distributed virtual teams with people collaborating across cultures (and countries). Of course, a major theme in virtual teams has been conflict or cohesion among culturally disparate members or team leaders.

To understand the issues related to cultural barriers more closely, we collected survey data from distributed workers within China and India. Supervisory power is valued in these countries by both supervisors and subordinates, because of their high power distance culture.  From the Chinese data we find that distributed work has an impact on the degree of influence and control supervisors can exert over the subordinates. Subordinates use their judgment in determining the extent to which they utilize telecommuting so as to minimize any power imbalances. As a result, the frequency of telecommuting is high only when the subordinates perceive that their supervisors’ power (legitimate and reward) is preserved or when the supervisors themselves telecommute. Further, the positive relationship between reward power and telecommuting frequency becomes exaggerated when supervisors themselves telecommute. A paper written up on this study is currently in the revise and resubmit stage with Asia Pacific Journal of Management.

Next, we conducted a study in India using survey data from 411 telecommuting individuals. In this study, we define remoteness in a distributed context as the extent of geographic overlap and the extent of face to face interaction between supervisor and subordinate workplace. We find that remoteness is negatively related to annual appraisal ratings received by a person. Furthermore, this relationship is particularly strong for those who have a poor relationship with their supervisors. However, if the subordinates are able to remain in constant contact with their supervisors via email or other electronic communication media then some of these harmful effects are reduced.

Both these studies are unique in that these are the first few to examine virtual work and supervisor-subordinate relationships in a global setting. Moreover the study in India is one of the first studies to examine the impact of remoteness on actual performance ratings. Although past research claims that distributed work may increase individual performance – we demonstrate that this is contingent upon the leader-member relations. Previous studies have used self-reported measures of performance which can be highly biased. Also, these were conducted in a Western context where supervisor-subordinate relationships can be quite different from the Eastern context.

The implications of our studies are several. For one multinationals have to be careful when they transfer practices that originate in the West. Distributed work has a way of attenuating effects of power and control. When supervisors associate distributed work with reduced power they may withdraw support (coaching, career visibility) or place obstacles (biased performance appraisals and logistical roadblocks). Supervisors may also seek to reclaim power through expecting more face-time from their subordinates.  Understanding these relationships will guide development of appropriate leadership style among managers and shape HRM practices of distributed organizations globally.

To manage effectively, we believe that some face time will have to be built into distributed work programs. This is especially applicable to telecommuting. In the case of virtual teams, the cultural differences will have to be recognized and team members may have to be oriented towards different expectations. Leader and follower styles have to be adapted in order to accommodate for these differences.

Understanding this phenomenon is complex and going forward, it is necessary to compare these results with data from the Western hemisphere. We have recently completed data collection from USA and will be carrying out comparative analysis.

Calibrating Process and Outcome Accountability Systems in the Workplace to Meet Fairness and Efficiency Goals by Philip E. Tetlock, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Gregory Mitchell, Ph.D., J.D., University of Virginia, William T. Self, Ph.D., University of Missouri, Barbara Mellers, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania and J. Angus D. Hildreth, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley

Funded: November 2009     Completed: June 2012

Executive Summary: This project used an experimental design to explore the impact of process and outcome accountability on racial and gender biases in interview decisions.  (Process accountability refers to holding managers accountability for following set procedures, whereas outcome accountability refers to holding managers accountability for meeting specified goals without regard to the process used to reach those goals.)  The experiment examined the impact of process and outcome accountability manipulations on managerial interviewing decisions in a climate where discrimination against women and minorities was forbidden and managers were supposed to hire well-qualified applicants. 

Where managers operated under outcome accountability constraints, fewer well-qualified applicants were selected for interviews and managers exhibited bias against white male candidates.  Where managers operated under process accountability constraints, they avoided bias against women and African-Americans and made more meritocratic decisions.  Managers reacted more negatively to outcome accountability than to process accountability.   


Total Funding Awarded: $754,558

Crossing Cultures: Unpacking the Expatriate Learning and Adjustment Process Over Time by Connie R. Wanberg, Ph.D., University of Minnesota, David A. Harrison, Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University, Jing Zhu, Ph.D. student, University of Minnesota and Erica Waldera, Ph.D. student, University of Minnesota

Funded: February 2008     Completed: June 2011

Abstract: The global nature of business requires international movement of talent.  As more companies send employees on international assignments, HR practitioners need to understand the adjustment process of expatriates to minimize stress and turnover and maximize performance, onboarding, and career development experiences.  Ten web surveys over a period of nine months will be used with a large and diverse sample of expatriates to explore the dynamic process of expatriate adjustment, career development, and personal learning with insight from coping theory, to identify the patterns and predictors of adaptation over time.  Hierarchical linear modeling will be used to analyze the longitudinal data.

Dynamic Competencies and Performance in Global Leaders: Role of Personality and Developmental Experiences by Paula Caligiuri, Ph.D., Rutgers University and Ibraiz Tarique, Ph.D., Pace University

Funded: June 2008     Completed: January 2011

Executive Summary: Today’s global economy has created a more complex and dynamic environment in which most firms must learn to compete effectively to achieve sustainable growth.  Leaders who can effectively manage through this complex, changing, and often ambiguous global environment are critical for firms’ future success.  Using data from a sample of 420 global leaders (matched with 221 supervisors), this study examined the combined effect of personality characteristics (extraversion, openness to experience, and conscientiousness) and cultural experiences (organization-initiated cross-cultural work experiences and non-work cross-cultural experiences) as predictors of dynamic cross-cultural competencies (tolerance of ambiguity, cultural flexibility, and reduced ethnocentrism) which were, in turn, predictors of global leadership success.

A Dynamic Social Capital Model of The Organizational Socialization Process by Michelle K. Duffy, Ph.D., University of Minnesota, Jason D. Shaw, Ph.D., University of Minnesota and Ruolian Fang, Ph.D. student, University of Minnesota

Funded: June 2008     Completed: September 2011
Executive Summary: New employees acquire the attitudes, behaviors, and knowledge needed to participate as organizational members through organizational socialization. It is important to understand the socialization process given that ineffective socialization is one of the primary drivers of newcomers quit and discharge, an issue that is problematic not only from cost-based perspectives, that is, opportunities to recoup investments in recruitment, selection, and training, but also in terms of work disruptions and productivity losses. 

This study applied the social capital perspective and sought to understand the socialization processes by which newcomers access to and mobilize social capital embedded in their informal networks of relationships with organizational insiders (e.g., peers and supervisors) to achieve effective socialization. Specifically, it examined how social capital granted by newcomers’ communication network influences their learning and assimilation. Furthermore, this study investigated that newcomers, depending on their personality characteristics (e.g., core self-evaluations), differentially mobilize the accessible social capital for effective adjustment. Overall, this study indicated that on the one hand, organizational insiders (e.g., peers and supervisors) play an important role in facilitating newcomers to learn and assimilate after their organizational entry, and on the other hand, new employees are proactive at building informal networks for self-socialization.

Employee Engagement: A study of the link between performance management and employee engagement in multinational corporations in developed and developing economies by Elaine Farndale, Ph.D., Tilburg University

Funded: June 2008     Completed: October 2011 

Executive Summary:
Employee engagement is a hot and often debated topic for both practitioners and academics, especially when exploring it across countries (given variations in national value systems and management styles and practices). This project has examined the definitions and drivers of employee engagement in four multinational enterprises (including GKN, AkzoNobel and Tesco HSC) operating across developed and developing economies. It explored in particular how approaches to performance management can be used to enhance employee engagement. Based on interviews with 42 HR and other business managers, and survey responses from 964 employees across the UK, Netherlands, India, and China, a more nuanced understanding of the meaning of employee engagement has emerged: Across the data, the findings show both similarities and differences in how employee engagement is defined, and how it might be developed through performance management, the provision of resources and the setting of certain levels of demands at both the job and organization level.

An Extended Model of Social Embeddedness:  Applying Social Network Theory to Enrich Job Embeddedness Theory by Peter Horn, Ph.D., Arizona State University, Kristie Rogers, Ph.D. student, Arizona State University, David Allen, Ph.D., University of Memphis, Mian Zhang, Ph.D., Tsinghua University, Cynthia Lee, Northeastern University and Hailin (Helen) Zhao, Master's student, Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Funded: November 2008  Completed: February 2012 

Executive Summary: Organizational scholars and managers are increasingly concerned about why employees stay, which is poorly understand by the prevailing research focus on why employees quit. In 2001, Terence Mitchell and Thomas Lee introduced the theory of job embeddedness to clarify the psychology of staying. They asserted that employees stay because they fit the job and community (“fit”), have multiple connections to people inside and outside the firm (“links”), and would lose valued benefits if they quit or relocate (“sacrifice”). Many research studies have since shown that job embeddedness can predict employee turnover for different occupations, demographic subgroups, and cultures (improving upon traditional turnover models). 

Despite its growing validation, Peter Hom, Kristie Rogers, David Allen, Mian Zhang, Cynthia Lee, and Helen Zhao sought to better clarify why people stay by considering additional facets of “embedding links” to extend Mitchell and Lee’s (2001) preeminent theory of staying.  The standard view of links underscores the number of social ties binding employees to jobs. More ties translate into greater staying. Yet links can conceivably embed employees in other ways, namely, delivering social capital, expressing social pressures (to stay or leave), and remaining in the job and community (maintain existing relationships).  

To enrich prevailing embeddedness theory, Peter Hom, Kristie Rogers, David Allen, Mian Zhang, Cynthia Lee, and Helen Zhao carried out network surveys with nearly 900 employees in various occupations from America, Hong Kong, and China to capture these additional dimensions of embedding links. They also measured job embeddedness and quit propensity (quit intentions and turnover behavior).  Their statistical analyses demonstrated that these new link dimensions can explain additional variance in quit propensity beyond that explained by job embeddedness. Their findings regarding an extended embeddedness theory and implications for HR policies are detailed below.

HRM Strategies & Practices across Subsidiaries in Multinational Corporations from Emerging Economies: An Indian Perspective by Mohan Thite, Ph.D., Griffith University, Australia, Adrian Wilkinson, Griffith University and Pawan Budhwar, Aston University

Funded: February 2008   Completed: March 2011   

Executive Summary:
With the rapid rise of multinationals from emerging economies, there is a need for better understanding of the deployment and diffusion of managerial strategies from their perspective. This study focuses on Indian multinationals to provide insights and guidance into the motives, strategic opportunities and constraints in cross national transfer of international management policies and practices in a multi-polar world. Using interview data of over 90 senior managers in eight Indian MNCs across their subsidiaries in both developed and developing markets, the study finds that they follow a unique approach to their international growth & people management that is grounded in their Indian heritage.  They adopt a wide range of differentiation strategies underpinned by innovation and an overarching corporate philosophy. They predominantly follow an ‘adaptive approach’ to managing their subsidiaries in developed markets whereas it is highly localized when it comes to managing developing market subsidiaries. Their HR strategies closely mirror their business strategies and focus on employee growth and engagement.

Intelligence Testing For Selection Without Adverse Impact: The Potential of Executive Attentional Control by David G. Allen, Ph.D., University of Memphis and Frank A. Bosco, University of Memphis

Funded: November 2008     Completed: December 2010  

Executive Summary: Intelligence tests have been shown to be a strong predictor of work performance, so many HR professionals use these tests to staff their organizations.  Although intelligence tests are among the most valid tests that can be used to staff most jobs, they have one major drawback--Black and Hispanic individuals tend not to perform as well on these tests as majority applicants do. This often results in adverse impact against these minority groups.  HR professionals have long struggled with this adverse impact-validity tradeoff common with the use of intelligence tests. 

David G. Allen and Frank A. Bosco address the issue of balancing test validity and diversity by exploring the use of a different type of intelligence measure, called Executive Attention.  Unlike most intelligence tests that are based largely on educational history, Executive Attention measures focus on attention-based tasks that assess the ability to multi-task.  Such tests are less influenced by one's educational experiences-- often thought to be the source of racial differences on traditional intelligence tests. 

Managing multi-cultural teams: From a cross-cultural to a global perspective by Miriam Erez, Ph.D., Israel Institute of Technology

Funded: November 2008     Completed: July 2011

Executive Summary:
As part of the globalization process, a growing number of employees in Multi-National Organizations (MNOs) face the new reality of working in Multi-Cultural Teams (MCTs). Although a plethora of articles concerning MCTs were published in the last decades, most of them have not considered the role of leaders and followers in MCTs as part of their research models.

The present research proposed and empirically tested a new MCT effectiveness model, using data from two samples: Study 1- consisting of MBA students in 73 virtual, short term MCTs, and Study 2- consisting of 55 on-going MCTs in 9 MNOs. Our MCT effectiveness model  considers both global leadership behaviors and followers' openness to cultural diversity as antecedents of MCT effectiveness, through the mediating role of team identity, with team trust as a second mediator, preciding team identity in study 2. We developed a new 12- item Global Leadership Behaviors' typology that convey to the followers behaviors that represent global values of a collective sense of identity, openness to cultural diversity and team members' interdependence. 

National values, human resource practices and organizational performance: A study across 21 countries by Yitzhak Fried, Ph.D., Syracuse University and Hilla Peretz, Ph.D., Ort Braude College, Israel

Executive Summary: While there is evidence that strategic HR practices are associated with organizational performance, it is still unknown how these practices contribute to organizational performance in different national cultures. For example, are the same HR practices effective across countries with different values?  Which HR practices are most consistent with different cultural values? Given the increasingly competitive global business environment, these questions are especially important today. 
Hilla Peretz and Yitzhak Fried examined the influence of national culture on the implementation and characteristics of key HR practices.  Further, the study explored the effect of the degree of fit between national culture and the HR practices on organizational performance. 

Retirement-eligible but not Retiring: A Longitudinal Study of the Organizational- and Job-related Factors Associated with the Retention of an Older Workforce by Samuel B. Bacharach, Ph.D., Cornell University

Funded: February 2008     Completed: August 2010

Executive Summary:
Estimates put the share of the labor force held by those 55 years and older to be nearly 24% by 2020 (Toosi, 2006).  For over a decade, experts have been warning that in order to avoid a large and rather sudden loss of needed skills and proprietary knowledge as baby-boomers become eligible to retire, employers will have little choice but to adopt policies and practices aimed at motivating older, retirement-eligible employees to defer retirement. However, with little known about how job design and employment practices affect the retention of retirement-eligible workers, managers have little basis for making decisions about which practices to modify or adopt.

Defining retirement as the disengagement from a career job that is linked with the drawing of some retirement benefit, Samuel Bacharach and Peter Bamberger reviewed previous research that has explored the factors related to retirement.  Drawing from job embeddedness theory, they focused on key job, organizational and relational factors that they deemed likely to play a key role in determining whether an individual retires upon becoming eligible to draw retirement benefits.  Data on a wide range of job, organizational and relational variables were collected from a national probability sample of older workers who, at the time of the initial interview, were within six months of becoming eligible to draw some sort of retirement benefit for the first time.  A second wave of interviews—conducted one year later—was used to collect data on the criterion measure, namely retirement upon eligibility.

Transfer of Training: A Meta-Analytic and Integrative Review by Brian D. Blume, Ph.D., University of Michigan, Flint, J. Kevin Ford, Ph.D. Michigan State University, Timothy T. Baldwin, Ph.D., Indiana University and Jason L. Huang, Ph.D. student, Michigan State University

Funded: November 2008     Completed: March 2010

Executive Summary: Organizations in the United States spend more than $125 billion annually on employee training and development.  However, the success of these interventions is largely unknown.  Training is only truly successful when employees apply what they learned by using the knowledge, skills, and/or abilities gained in training on the job. 

Brian D. Blume and his colleagues examined previous research that has explored the factors related to whether trainees use the material they learned in training on the job.  They identified several important trainee characteristics, and work environmental factors that may play a role in determining just how effective an organization's training efforts are. 

Work-Family Support Programs as a Strategic Human Resource Initiative: A Meta-Analysis of Effects on Organizational Outcomes by Wendy J. Casper, Ph.D., University of Texas at Arlington, Marcus M. Butts, Ph.D., University of Texas at Arlington

Funded: November 2008     Completed: September 2010 

Executive Summary: Work-family programs are discretionary programs that go beyond the basic requirements of the Family and Medical Leave Act, and share the common goal of supporting employees’ family demands.  They include programs such as paid/unpaid elder care leave, flexible spending accounts for dependent care, elder care resource and referral, child care resource and referral, flexible spending accounts for elder care, and on-site child care. Such work-family programs are offered by organizations that believe doing so will benefit the business and enhance employee commitment and performance.  Despite this, there is no clear evidence that work-family programs impact business outcomes.  Wendy Casper and Marcus Butts investigated the business case for work-family programs by exploring the degree to which the availability and use of these programs relate to positive employee attitudes and performance. 

Work-life Interference: Expanding our Measurement Conceptualization and Improving our Measurement by Anne Marie Ryan, Ph.D., Michigan State University, Jessica Fandre, Ph.D. student, Michigan State University, Elizabeth Oberlander, Ph.D. student, Michigan State University, Ruchi Sinha, Ph.D. student, Michigan State University and Alyssa Friede, Ph.D. DePaul University

Funded: June 2008     Completed: June 2010

Executive Summary: Organizations have increasingly recognized the importance of considering how work affects life outside of work.  While much of the research and policy focus has been on ways to reduce work-family conflict, employees have many different life roles and many employees do not have children or partners.  HR professionals have noted the need to be inclusive in approaching the issue of work interference with life outside of work, yet we actually know little about how work interferes with other roles than family and how that affects employee well-being.

Ann Marie Ryan, Jessica Keeney, Elizabeth Poposki, Ruchi Sinha, and Alyssa Westring sought to better understand work interference with non-work roles.  They collected data from 1811 working adults of varied ages, gender, marital and parental status, in a wide variety of occupations.  Their findings regarding work-life interference and implications for HR policies are detailed below.


Total Funding Awarded: $566,658

Age-Related Determinants of Retirement Planning and Turnover by Ruth Kanfer, Ph.D., Georgia Institute of Technology

Funded: November 2007     Completed: December 2010 

Executive Summary: Workforce aging represents one of the greatest HR challenges facing organizations today.  Demographic trends in most developed countries have created an environment in which many organizations face looming large-scale workforce retirements and potential shortages of skilled replacement workers. As a consequence, many firms have planned or implemented programs to help retain aging workers. However, the effectiveness of these programs depends on understanding the key factors that affect retirement intentions. 

Research conducted by Ruth Kanfer and collaborators Julie Nguyen and Joerg Korff documents the effects of the recent economic downturn on employee experiences and retirement intentions, and the significant roles that employee motivation and attitudes play in predicting retirement and work intentions.  Her findings with midlife and older working professionals and retirees suggest that firms could benefit by: (1) using a profile-based retention strategy to identify employees most likely to be successfully retained, and (2) focusing HR practices (for those employees most likely to be retained) on increasing motive satisfaction at work and in the job.

Diversity and Careers: An Examination of the Career Experiences, Processes and Outcomes of a Multicultural Workforce by Karen S. Lyness, Ph.D. Baruch College, CUNY and Belle Rose Ragins, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Funded: November 2007     Completed: August 2010

Executive Summary: People of color, currently a third of the U.S. workforce, are expected to make up close to half of the workforce by 2050. HR practitioners need to understand the challenges and resources that may help or hinder career processes and outcomes for this diverse workforce. Research conducted by Karen Lyness and Belle Ragins addressed this need by examining career experiences of 215 Black, 248 Latino, 284 Asian and 2,173 White college graduates employed in a wide range of U.S. organizations.
This study found that Black, Latino, and Asian employees reported more racial prejudice and discrimination in their organizations and less career satisfaction than White employees, and that Black and Asian employees reported engaging in more job search behaviors than their White counterparts.  However, both White employees and employees of color who reported more racial discrimination and less organizational career support experienced more negative psychological career processes, less career satisfaction, and reported more searching for new jobs than those who had more positive workplace experiences.  These results indicate that the costs of racial discrimination in the workplace affect all employees, as do the benefits of creating inclusive workplaces that provide career support and developmental opportunities.

HR Professionals as Team Leaders: The Dimensions, Antecedents and Consequences of Team Resilience by Ben Rosen, Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Brad Kirkman, Ph.D., Texas A&M University

Funded: March 2007     Completed: March 2010
Executive Summary: Work teams and sports teams share many things in common, not the least of which is the desire to succeed and to sustain success over time. In sports and in business, the path to success is not without pitfalls. Sports teams sometimes lose key players to injuries, go into slumps, and lose focus. Work teams lose key members to reassignment, encounter unexpected customer demands, and encounter unexpected obstacles. Both sports teams and work teams encounter adversity—barriers, challenges, and setbacks.

Teams that encounter adversity may slide down a slippery slope of confusion, conflict, finger-pointing, and lasting failure. Yet some teams are particularly adept at dealing with adversity.  Teams that recover from all kinds of adversity are called resilient teams. Resilient teams show the capacity to bounce back, and return to or even exceed their prior levels of performance.

Benson Rosen and Bradley L. Kirkman sought to understand what it takes to build a resilient team. To do so, they collected data from almost 2,000 college coaches on how to build team resilience. Coaches’ strategies for building resilient teams were summarized into five categories.  The implications of coaches’ insights for building and sustaining resilient work teams, for each of these strategies, is detailed below.

Institutional Compatibility and High-Commitment HR Practices in an Emerging Economy: A Study of MNC Affiliates in China by Yang Cao, Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Charlotte and Wei Zhao, Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Funded: March 2007     Completed: March 2009
Executive Summary: An important issue facing today’s multinational corporations (MNCs) is how to manage human resources in their affiliates located in different countries.  It is unclear whether HR best practices are truly best in every culture or if MNCs need to adapt their HR practices to the host country’s local environment to see positive effects on organizational performance.

Yang Cao and Wei Zhao examined the role of compatibility between global best practices and the local institutional environment in determining their adoptions and effects in China, the world’s largest emerging economy.

Leadership Development Through Experience: Understanding The Role Of Critical Reflection And Impact On Human Resource Management Practices by D. Scott DeRue, Ph.D., University of Michigan, John R. Hollenbeck, Ph.D., Michigan State University and Jennifer D. Nahrgang, Ph.D. student, Michigan State University

Funded: June 2007     Completed: April 2010

Executive Summary: In 2009, U.S.-based organizations spent an estimated $12 billion (24% of their overall training budgets) on formal leadership development programs and services. Yet, most leadership development occurs on the job, not in formal training or classroom contexts. But learning leadership from experience is difficult. People are often uncertain about what leadership lessons they should learn, or worse yet, they learn the wrong lessons from their experiences. Organizations need tools and technologies that help individuals learn the right lessons and develop their leadership skills from on-the-job experiences. Research conducted by D. Scott DeRue, John R. Hollenbeck, and Jennifer D. Nahrgang demonstrates that "after-event reviews" (AER) are one such tool that effectively promotes experience-based leadership development.
Managing Global Talent: Solving the Spousal Adjustment Problem by Nina Cole, Ph.D. Ryerson University, Canada

Funded: March 2007     Completed: July 2008

Executive Summary: International assignments are increasingly common for managers, but the failure rate for expatriates is high and very expensive.  The main cause of expatriate failure is spousal and family adjustment problems.  Understanding the spouse’s adjustment and perceptions of assistance is critical for increasing the success of expatriate assignments.  Research conducted by Nina D. Cole reveals that spousal perceptions of organizational assistance efforts are frequently misaligned with their actual needs.  Her findings suggest firms will save money by focusing on the types of assistance most valued by spouses.

Performance Appraisal Programs and Organizational Performance: The Contributing Effects of National Values and Organizational Characteristics Across 21 Countries by Yitzhak Fried, Ph.D., Syracuse University and Hilla Peretz, Ph.D., Syracuse University

Funded: November 2007   Completed: May 2008
Executive Summary: The use of individual-based merit performance appraisal practices has been shown to have a positive impact on organizational outcomes.  Such merit systems are widespread in the U.S. and are consistent with the individualistic values that characterize it.  However, would such performance appraisal practices be equally effective in organizations embedded in other countries that may have a more collectivistic orientation? 

Hilla Peretz and Yitzhak Fried examined the influence of cultural values on performance appraisal practices adopted by organizations across 21 countries.  Further, they explored the effect of the level of fit between a nation’s cultural values and the characteristics of the organization’s performance appraisal practices on organizational performance. 

Workforce Policies and Practices to Promote Effective Engagement and Retention of the Aging American Workforce by Lisa Hisae Nishii, Ph.D., Cornell University and Susanne M. Bruyère, Ph.D., Cornell University

Funded: June 2007     Completed: July 2010
Executive Summary: Scholars as well as offices within the federal government have warned that the combination of retiring baby boomers, declining fertility rates, and shifts in the critical competencies held by younger workers is contributing to what promises to be a pronounced labor shortage and associated slow-down of the American economy within the next few decades.  Despite these warnings, few organizations have taken proactive steps to curtail the negative effects that the aging workforce may have for the future growth of their companies.

Given the research which suggests that older workers tend to be better performers than their less experienced, younger counterparts, one obvious means of responding to a shortage in skills is to retain high performing older workers longer. Unfortunately, however, as cautioned by the International Labour Organization and others, a major obstacle to the full utilization and retention of older workers is ageism, or discriminatory attitudes and behaviors toward aging workers, which can demoralize them and discourage them from remaining in the workforce.  Indeed, EEOC statistics suggest that verdicts against employers related to age-based discriminating are on the rise, with lawsuits costing defendants a total of $72.1 million in 2009 alone, suggesting that ageism is a major problem in organizations.

In this research, Lisa Nishii and her colleagues at Cornell University argue that whether or not high-performing older workers experience ageism will depend on the work context.  In their past research, they have found that local conditions within people’s immediate work group have a very large impact on their experiences and engagement, so they focus in this research on the work context of the units/ departments within which older workers are embedded.

Specifically, they explore three forms of inclusion as contextual factors that might affect experiences of ageism: the inclusiveness of workers’ unit climates, inclusion in the unit manager’s ingroup, and inclusion in the unit’s age cohort.  They argue that these three forms of inclusion matter to the extent that they affect the likelihood that people engage in the type of stereotypical thinking that results in ageism. When contextual factors reduce the salience of age, help coworkers to see stereotype-inconsistent and/or personalized information about older workers, and/or minimize the relevance of age in job stereotypes (i.e., what type of people should fill a particular job), ageism should be reduced.


Total Funding Awarded: $79,856

Applying a Conceptual Framework of Global Work-Life Strategies by Helen De Cieri, Ph.D., Monash University, Australia and E. Anne Bardoel, Ph.D., Monash University, Australia

Funded: June 2006  Completed: June 2008

Executive Summary: Work-life balance issues are important for talent management and for developing a high performance workforce.  Work-life human resource practices can provide an incentive to increase motivation, job satisfaction and commitment and can be used to attract and retain the best talent.  However, managing work-life issues is a challenge for multinational corporations because local conditions can vary tremendously, making it less likely work-life balance policies will be effective across locations.  Therefore, there is a need for multinational corporations to develop international work-life balance strategies that establish global guidelines, while simultaneously allowing for local differences.  Helen De Cieri and E. Anne Bardoel examined how multinational corporations are addressing these challenges and the individuals who are on the front lines ensuring work-life balance policies are effectively managed.

Assessing HR Alignment to Performance Competencies by Herbert G. Heneman, III, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison and Anthony T. Milanowski, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison

Funded: June 2006  Completed: June 2008

Executive Summary: An organization’s HR practices can contribute tremendously to organizational effectiveness.  The most powerful combination of HR practices is interactive, such that the practices have a mutually supportive and reinforcing effect beyond the effects of the individual practices themselves.  The most effective HR systems foster employee ability, motivation, and opportunity to contribute to effectiveness. 

Heneman and Milanowski developed and evaluated a process to assess human resource practices alignment to ensure the content of HR practices reinforce the desired employee performance.  As part of this process, suggestions for how to increase HR alignment are elicited from participants.  Within a southwestern school district, they gauged the alignment of HR practices to a teacher competency model which is the driver of important strategic objectives in this organization. 

Outsourcing HR in Small and Mid-Sized Businesses: Value Creation through Strategic Win-Win-Wins by Stephen Gilliland, Ph.D., University of Arizona and Jerel Slaughter, Ph.D., University of Arizona

Funded: November 2006  Ended: December 2008

Executive Summary: Outsourcing has become increasingly popular in HR with some studies reporting as many as 85% of organizations outsourcing at least one component of their HR function.  A number of HR functions can be outsourced, from employee benefits and assistance counseling programs to staffing and training.  The large number of outsourcing options leads to questions about the changing nature of HR.  Of particular importance is whether employees and employers benefit from outsourced HR functions.  

Stephen Gilliland and Jerel Slaughter examined the potential benefits of outsourcing HR functions for small to mid-sized businesses, their employees, and the outsourcing firms that serve them.  Small to mid-size businesses represent the largest and fastest growing sources of jobs in the United States and HR outsourcing has the potential to impact a substantial amount of employees in these businesses.  Several benefits for HR outsourcing were found for all parties. 


Total Funding Awarded: $43,854

The Impact of Human Resource Management on Social Performance by Sandra Rothenberg, Ph.D., Rochester Institute of Technology and Clyde Hull, Ph.D., Rochester Institute of Technology

Funded: June 2005  Completed: January 2008

Executive Summary: Many large firms are responding to increased legal, social and environmental pressures by measuring and reporting their performance not just in terms of financial performance, but also in terms of social performance.  In the environmental arena, for example, astronomical growth in legislation related to environmental issues, increases in waste disposal costs, decreased availability of raw materials, and shifts in customer preferences have dramatically increased interest in, and pressure for, environmentally conscious business.  Further, there is evidence that increasing corporate social performance can lead to improved financial performance, increased operational efficiency, reduced costs, and fewer legal conflicts. 

A key concern for corporations has been how to improve social performance without compromising efforts needed to remain competitive in the global market place, with its constant pressure to produce more efficiently, with superior quality, and lower costs. 

Sandra Rothenberg and Clyde Eirikur Hull examined the relationship between effective HR practices and social performance to understand if practices that are good for the business are also good for its social performance. 

Linking HR Systems: 360 Feedback, Work-Unit Satisfaction, and Organizational Succession Planning by Michael K. Mount, Ph.D., University of Iowa, Linda S. Zachar, Panera Bread of Iowa and Melanie Burns, University of Iowa

Funded: November 2005    Completed: June 2007

Executive Summary: One of the most compelling needs in organizations today is for competent, effective leadership.  Despite their importance, relatively little is known about what factors are considered when identifying high potential executive replacements.  Michael K. Mount and Linda S. Zachar examined the relationships between managers’ performance, the satisfaction of their employees, and whether the managers were identified as potential future leaders in the company.  The study not only identified the types of individuals selected as high potentials for executives positions, but also showed how useful multi-source feedback ratings and employee attitudes can be for making such decisions.