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Dr. Scott Highhouse's Visit to PSU I/O Program

In mid-October, our program hosted Dr. Scott Highhouse, Professor of Psychology and Ohio Eminent Scholar at Bowling Green State University for a visit. He presented a talk entitled:

Intersection of Industrial-Organizational Psychology with Judgment and Decision Making: A Personal Account

Here are some pictures from his visit:


Thank you for coming out Scott, we enjoyed having you!

Alicia Grandey's work featured on "WorkLife with Adam Grant" and Wisconsin Public Radio

Alicia Grandey's research was featured on WorkLife with Adam Grant (Episode 5, 4/4/2018, link:
and Wisconsin Public Radio (4/6/2018, link:
Feel free to check these programs out!

Alicia Grandey and program alum Lawrence Houston receive media attention

Alicia Grandey recently wrote an article for The Conversation  entitled  “Black employees in the service industry pay an emotional tax at work,” based on a study with PSU IO program alum Lawrence Houston, has gotten attention in as well as The Salon, the San Francisco Chronicle and Philadelphia Inquirer. Congrats Alicia!

Gordon Sayre conducting research in Switzerland

Gordon Sayre won the ThinkSwiss Scholarship, permitting him to work in Switzerland with Dr. Laurenz Meier over the summer of 2018. Congrats!

Dr. Susan Mohammed Interviewed by New York Magazine Blog

Dr. Susan Mohammed was recently interviewed by New York Magazine's blog, Science of Us, regarding her opinion on a commonly used method of bringing groups of people together for the first time, icebreakers. Apparently, they can be ineffective if not done properly.

“Icebreakers are generally a first step and they can be valuable in … getting people to know each other,” she says. “But in terms of group cohesion or deep levels of trust or psychological safety or an open climate, it’s just not going to be enough.”

In this interview, she offers strategies for making icebreakers more effective.

And one way to make people a little more engaged, Mohammed says, is to outline right off the bat what they’ll be doing, explain the goal of the icebreaker — are they there to build trust? learn something new about a person? figure out roles for a team? — and to reiterate those same points again once it’s all done.


Dr. Susan Mohammed's Invited Talk at APS 2016

Dr. Susan Mohammed was invited to present her work on temporal orientations and how that affects team performance at the Association for Psychological Science (APS) this past May. Click here for a write up in the APS Observer on the session as well as highlights from what she discussed. Great job Susan!

Dr. Alicia Grandey Interviewed by The New Yorker

Dr. Grandey was recently interviewed by The New Yorker magazine about her research on emotional labor as well as other factors that influence work environments.

Even more salient, Grandey argues, is the feeling of inauthenticity that enforced emotional displays create. In her research, she has found that putting on an emotional mask at work—conforming to a certain image that doesn’t necessarily correspond to how you feel or who you are—drains you of energy that can only be replenished if you then have an opportunity to be yourself. “You have to be able to be real,” she told me. “If we’re expecting people to be super happy and positive to people you’re expected to be positive with as part of your job”—to smile and act upbeat with clients and customers—“if you can’t turn around and be real with co-workers, you are amplifying emotional labor. And you have a real problem on your hands.

Click here for the full story. Congrats!

NSF Workshop on Emotions, Creativity, and Work Climate Hosted at Penn State

Last month, Dr. Alicia Grandey organized an NSF workshop on emotions, creativity, and work climate that brought together researchers in psychology, organizational behavior, and engineering from across the campus as well as around the world.

Click the link below for an overview of the workshop.

Dr. Alicia Grandey's NPR podcast: McDonald's and Emotion Norms in Russia

Dr. Alicia Grandey was recently interviewed as part of the NPR's podcast Invisibilia about emotional labor and how McDonald's is changing emotion norms in Russia!   

Click here for more information on the interview:

Click here to access the full podcast:

Dr. Sam Hunter: Being a jerk does not lead to more original ideas

Dr. Hunter's award winning paper (see below) has been featured in various news outlets, including Fortune, Business Insider, and The research, entitled, Is Being a Jerk Necessary for Originality? Examining the Role of Disagreeableness in the Sharing and Utilization of Original Ideas, found that disagreeableness did not influence the originality of the ideas produced, but did influence the extent to which the ideas were employed by team members. Hunter and Cushenbery also found that disagreeableness influenced idea originality only in contexts where new ideas were discouraged and original ideas were proposed by other team members.

Click on the links below to access the news articles!

Fortune magazine

Business Insider

Daily Mail


Hunter, S. T., & Cushenbery, L. (2015). Is Being a Jerk Necessary for Originality? Examining the Role of Disagreeableness in the Sharing and Utilization of Original Ideas. Journal of Business and Psychology30(4), 621–639.

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