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Journal Article
Organization Science
Jung Won Lee, Eric Quintane, Sun Young Lee, Camila Umaña Ruiz, Martin Kilduff
Subject(s)
Human resources management/organizational behavior
Keyword(s)
structural holes, brokering behaviors, tertius separans, tertius iungens, social networks
Connecting otherwise disconnected individuals and groups - spanning structural holes - can earn social network brokers faster promotions, higher remuneration, and enhanced creativity. Organizations also benefit through improved communication and coordination from these connections between knowledge silos. Neglected in prior research, however, has been theory and evidence concerning the psychological costs to individuals of engaging in brokering activities. We build new theory concerning the extent to which keeping people separated (i.e., tertius separans brokering) relative to bringing people together (i.e., tertius iungens brokering) results in burnout and in abusive behavior toward coworkers. Engagement in tertius separans brokering, relative to tertius iungens brokering, we suggest, burdens people with onerous demands while limiting access to resources necessary to recover. Across three studies, we find that tertius separans leads to abusive behavior of others, mediated by an increased experience of burnout on the part of the broker. First, we conducted a five-month field study of burnout and abusive behavior, with brokering assessed via e-mail exchanges among 1,536 university employees in South America. Second, we examined time-separated data on self-reported brokering behaviors, burnout, and coworker abuse among 242 employees of U.S. organizations. Third, we experimentally investigated the effects of the two types of brokering behaviors on burnout and abusive behavior for 273 employed adults. The results across three studies showed that tertius separans brokering puts the broker at an increased risk of burnout and subsequent abusive behavior toward others in the workplace.
© 2023, INFORMS
Subject(s)
Entrepreneurship; Human resources management/organizational behavior; Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s)
startup early employees, technology entrepreneurship, human capital, job choice, scientists and engineers
Early-stage technology startups rely critically on talented scientists and engineers to commercialize new technologies. And yet, they compete with large technology firms to hire the best workers. Theories of ability sorting predict that high ability workers will choose jobs in established firms that offer greater complementary assets and higher pay, leaving low ability workers to take lower-paying and riskier jobs in startups. We propose an alternative view in which heterogeneity in both worker ability and preferences enable startups to hire talented workers who have a taste for a startup environment, even at lower pay. Using a longitudinal survey that follows 2,394 science and engineering PhDs from graduate school into industrial employment, we overcome common empirical challenges by observing ability and stated preferences prior to first-time employment. We find that both ability and career preferences strongly predict startup employment, with high ability workers who prefer startup employment being the most likely to work in a startup. We show that this is due in part to the dual selection effects of worker preferences resulting in a large pool of startup job applicants, and startups “cherry picking” the most talented workers to make job offers to. Additional analyses confirm that startup employees earn approximately 17% lower pay. This gap is greatest for high ability workers and persists over workers’ early careers, suggesting that they accept a negative compensating differential in exchange for the non-pecuniary benefits of startup employment. This is further supported by data on job attributes and stated reasons for job choice.
© 2022, INFORMS
Journal Article
Manufacturing and Service Operations Management
2021 Best Paper Award
Ryan W. Buell, Kamalini Ramdas, Nazlı Sönmez, Kavitha Srinivasan, Rengaraj Venkatesh
Subject(s)
Health and environment; Management sciences, decision sciences and quantitative methods; Product and operations management; Unspecified
Keyword(s)
client engagement, shared service delivery, shared medical appointments, healthcare operations, behavioral operations
Problem Definition: Clients and service providers alike often consider one-on-one service delivery to be ideal, assuming – perhaps unquestioningly – that devoting individualized attention best improves client outcomes. In contrast, in shared service delivery, clients are served in batches and the dynamics of group interaction could lead to increased client engagement – which could improve outcomes. However, the loss of privacy and personal connection might undermine engagement. Practical Relevance: The engagement dynamics in one-on-one and shared delivery models have not been rigorously studied. To the extent that shared delivery may result in comparable or better engagement than one-on-one delivery, service providers in a broad array of contexts may be able to create more value for clients by delivering service in batches. Methodology: We conducted a randomized controlled trial with 1,000 patients who were undergoing glaucoma treatment over a three-year period at a large eye hospital. Using verbatim and behavioral transcripts from over 20,000 minutes of video recorded during our trial, we examine how shared medical appointments (SMAs) – in which patients are served in batches – impact engagement. Results: Patients who experienced SMAs asked 33.33% more questions per minute, made 8.63% more non-question comments per minute, and exhibited higher levels of non-verbal engagement across a wide array of measures (attentiveness, positivity, head wobbling or ‘talai tallattam’ in Tamil – a South Indian gesture to signal agreement or understanding – eye contact and end-of-appointment happiness), relative to patients who attended one-on-one appointments. Managerial Implications: These results shed light on the potential for shared service delivery models to increase client engagement and thus enhance service performance.
© 2023, INFORMS
Subject(s)
Human resources management/organizational behavior
Keyword(s)
validity, reproducibility, open science, transparency, research process
Book Chapter
In Smart talent management. Managing people as knowledge assets, edited by Vlad Vaiman, Charles Vance, Ling Ju, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.
Subject(s)
Human resources management/organizational behavior
Keyword(s)
executive coaching, accelerated development, explicit and implicit knowledge, talent management, coaching notes, coaching process
JEL Code(s)
M12
Secondary Title
Smart talent management. Managing people as knowledge assets
Journal Article
Journal of Service Research
Claire Cardy, Nawar Chaker, Johannes Habel, Martin Klarmann, Olaf Plötner
Subject(s)
Marketing
Keyword(s)
price negotiation, power, dependency, buyer–seller relationship, demand contraction
Extant literature has studied how customer–salesperson price negotiations evolve in “normal” circumstances. However, recent economic recessions illustrate the need to advance theory on the question of how price negotiations evolve in “abnormal” times when customer demand significantly contracts beyond expected variation. In response to this gap in the literature, this study uses a multi-method design to investigate price negotiations during exceptional demand contractions. Our results from a theories-in-use study reveal that during such circumstances, salespeople’s perceived dependency on customers increases while customers’ perceived dependency on salespeople decreases. The inherent “power shift” should benefit customers in subsequent price negotiations. However, customers are less likely to capitalize on their power if they have a close relationship with a salesperson, implying that salespeople do not have to concede on price negotiations. This effect is likely due to increased sympathy during periods of exceptional demand contractions. The authors further validate key propositions from this qualitative study in a field study and a scenario-based experiment. Altogether, this study suggests that managers should not be too hasty in approving and encouraging salespeople to offer unnecessary price discounts during exceptional demand contractions as buyers may become more sympathetic and lenient during price negotiations.
With permission of SAGE Publishing
Subject(s)
Human resources management/organizational behavior; Strategy and general management
Keyword(s)
networks, structural holes, brokerage, innovation, cognitive style, person-network fit, field experiment
Extant research shows that individual cognitive style affects whether employees benefit most from a brokering or a dense network. But do people build the network structure in which they perform best? We address this question by advancing a novel 2-stage explanatory model that explicitly disentangles the network formation process from its performance effects. We hypothesize that Adaptors (i.e., individuals inclined to focus on implementable solutions through commonly accepted and well-defined approaches) perform best when their network spans structural holes. Yet, these same individuals systematically forego opportunities to build relations across structural holes. By contrast, Innovators (i.e., individuals inclined to focus on envisioning creative solutions that break away with established approaches) draw no or even negative performance returns from structural holes. Nevertheless, their inclination is to build ever-new bridging relations. We test and find support for this counterintuitive hypothesis through a randomized longitudinal field experiment enabling us to disentangle empirically both stages of our theorized process model. Our findings help illuminate why people may build networks that hurt their performance, shed a new light on the role of individual cognitive style in shaping network advantage, and bear concrete implications for organizations aiming to leverage networks to enhance employees’ performance.
With permission of the Academy of Management
Journal Article
Strategic Management Review
Marcus Holgersson, Martin W. Wallin, Henry Chesbrough, Linus Dahlander
Subject(s)
Strategy and general management; Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s)
alliance termination; disintegration, innovation strategy, open innovation closure, relationship dissolution, tie dissolution
ISSN (Online)
2688-2639
ISSN (Print)
2688-2612
Subject(s)
Management sciences, decision sciences and quantitative methods; Product and operations management; Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s)
Machine-learning, rational inattention, human-machine collaboration, cognitive effort
The rapid adoption of AI technologies by many organizations has recently raised concerns that AI may eventually replace humans in certain tasks. In fact, when used in collaboration, machines can significantly enhance the complementary strengths of humans. Indeed, because of their immense computing power, machines can perform specific tasks with incredible accuracy. In contrast, human decision-makers (DM) are flexible and adaptive but constrained by their limited cognitive capacity. This paper investigates how machine-based predictions may affect the decision process and outcomes of a human DM. We study the impact of these predictions on decision accuracy, the propensity and nature of decision errors as well as the DM's cognitive efforts. To account for both flexibility and limited cognitive capacity, we model the human decision-making process in a rational inattention framework. In this setup, the machine provides the DM with accurate but sometimes incomplete information at no cognitive cost. We fully characterize the impact of machine input on the human decision process in this framework. We show that machine input always improves the overall accuracy of human decisions, but may nonetheless increase the propensity of certain types of errors (such as false positives). The machine can also induce the human to exert more cognitive efforts, even though its input is highly accurate. Interestingly, this happens when the DM is most cognitively constrained, for instance, because of time pressure or multitasking. Synthesizing these results, we pinpoint the decision environments in which human-machine collaboration is likely to be most beneficial.
© 2022, INFORMS

Subject(s)
Diversity and inclusion; Strategy and general management; Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s)
gender, status, networks, tie formation, geographic proximity, network proximity, patents
Extant research has shown that it is harder for women than for men to form high-status connections in the workplace. Extending this line of research, we examine how two structural factors – geographic and network proximity – affect men’s and women’s chances of forming high-status connections. Using data on the formation of collaboration ties with star scientists within the R&D laboratories of the forty-two largest pharmaceutical companies between 1985 and 2010, we show that women who are geographically co-located with a “star” colleague are less likely to form a tie with that colleague than male peers who are similarly co-located, and this difference persists irrespective of the star’s gender. Conversely, women benefit more than men do from network proximity, as indicated by the presence of common third-party ties, and this difference widens if the star colleague is also a woman. By illuminating how geographic and network proximity affect the chances of forming high-status connections differently for women than for men, our study goes beyond the notion that women have reduced access to workplace social capital and expands consideration to the structural factors that underpin – amplify or reduce – that disadvantage.

With permission of the Academy of Management