Positive Perspectives


With the University of Michigan's commencement ceremonies this weekend, we reflect and give thanks for all that our students, researchers, and staff have accomplished during this academic year, and begin the planning process for the 2017-18 year.

To help us with this process, we need your ideas. It will only take a moment. Please send me an email responding to one or more of these questions,
  • What are we doing already that is helping you?
  • How can we create even more pioneering research? 
  • How can we create even more transformational learning experiences? 
  • How can we create even more impact in organizations and the world than ever before?
I will personally reply to every idea that is sent in. Thank you for being a part of our extended team. Together, we are building a new world of work!

Managing Director, Center for Positive Organizations


CPO Graduation Open House

Gather to celebrate the newest graduates from Magnify and +LAB
April 28, 2017
10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
Email for details

Positive Organizational Scholarship (POS) Research Conference

A biennial event for POS researchers to share, learn, and network 
May 9-10, 2017
Michigan Ross
Learn more

Positive Organizations Consortium Meeting

Peer-to-peer positive organizational change community
May 10, 2017
Michigan Ross
Email for details

Positive Business Conference

An annual gathering of positive business leaders and learners
May 11-12, 2017
Michigan Ross
Learn more and register

Fifth World Congress on Positive Psychology

CPO will present at this gathering of the International Positive Psychology Association
July 13-16, 2017
Montréal, Canada
Learn more and register
Visit our website to see all upcoming events
L-R: Jane Dutton and Bob Quinn
Congratulations Jane and Bob!
Over 150 people joined us to celebrate Jane Dutton and Bob Quinn as friends, colleagues, trailblazers, mentors, and by their new title: professor emeritus. For their characters, their contributions, and so much more, we are grateful!
View photos here


“Best and Brightest” includes two +LAB fellows

We’re proud and excited to share the recognition received by Lindsey Hirt and Eric Katz, both class of 2017 BBAs, who were named to Poets and Quants 2017 “Best and Brightest.”
Read more 


Dave Mayer on happiness and success 

Writing for Fast Company, Mayer explains why a self-help approach that focuses on others can be a winning strategy.
Read more

Barbara Fredrickson’s research featured in the New York Times

“Turning Negative Thinkers Into Positive Ones,” explores Fredrickson’s research on positivity and its connection to brain and body health.
Read more 

5 strategies for leading in a time of divisiveness

In his Forbes op-ed, Dean Scott DeRue offers five ideas—such as team balance and reminders of common identity (like physical artifacts)—for leaders to consider when attempting to unite their organizations.
Read more 

How not to be a fake positive leader

In his latest Huffington Post blog, Chris White suggests three mental shifts that allow the practices of being a positive leader to be enacted with integrity and real impact.
Read more
Visit our website for more news from our faculty, students, and friends
L-R: Monica Worline and Jane Dutton

Applying POS to Your Life

With a cadre of nearly 50 Center-affiliated faculty producing Positive Organizational Scholarship-themed research, there isn’t a shortage of great information about how and why to integrate positive practices into your life. We’ll introduce you to some of those practices here in each issue.


Awakening Compassion at Work

Suffering and compassion aren’t words or concepts common in business lexicon. But a new book by Jane Dutton and Monica Worline shows that suffering and a lack of compassion holds people and companies back from being their best.
Learn more about Awakening Compassion

5 questions with Kelsea Ballantyne

Learn more about CPO +LAB alum Kelsea Ballantyne (MBA/MS ‘16) in our monthly five question, five-minute interview series.

Kelsea BallantyneQ: What is your favorite positive practice and why?

I love the combination of mindfulness and gratitude. Mindfulness allows me to get present and connected to others. Gratitude allows me to move past anything that is creating stress or negative emotions in my life and connect to others. In graduate school, a group of us would meditate every Monday and Thursday morning and then write gratitude notes to others. I have carried this practice into my career and start the beginning and middle of my week meditating and then writing a card to a colleague to thank them. It is such a powerful practice... and I see many of those notes or cards pinned up on their boards.


Q: What area of positive organizational scholarship research resonates most deeply with you?

It is hard to pick just one. I really love the work Jane and Monica are doing on compassion and Jane's work on high quality connections. I have found in my new career that a lack of trust and respect can really kill any motivation or forward movement in a team. Having compassion and high quality connections can build that trust. I also love Gretchen's work on thriving (autonomy + learning). As a manager, I keep this right in front of me, so I can create an environment where my team has autonomy + learning so they can thrive. Oh, and I love the work on purpose. Oh, and I also love the work on intraprenuership. Oh, and the work on negotiating mindfully. Oh, and authenticity. Well, I really love it all.

Q: If you could tell anything to the "you" of five years ago, what would it be?

In order to care for others, you have to care for yourself. Continue to work hard and connect with others, but take the time to eat and sleep. Take the time to be out in nature and get reinvigorated, so you can serve your life purpose without burnout. Find the things that you love and remember to incorporate them into your life. You matter; your well-being matters. You are valuable.

Q: What was the last book you read?

I am never reading just one book, so the personal development book was, The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. I started an early morning practice during graduate school, but that had fallen away since I have to be to work at 5:30 a.m. every morning. This book has helped me reinvigorate my morning centering practice (even if I have to wake up at 3:45)... and it incorporates a lot of positive practices.

The novel was The Goldfinch by Donna Tart. It was a pretty interesting story with a lot of great characters (that is what I love about novels).

Q: What is one thing you cannot live without?

Hmmmmmm, these are difficult questions. I would have to say my mindfulness practice. It helps me connect to God, so I can go out and serve my life purpose. But, I also really love my husband and my it would be pretty hard to live without them, too.

Thought Leadership Showcase

Jane Dutton and Monica Worline talk about their new book Awakening Compassion.
Watch video
Kim Cameron

Kim Cameron on BYU radio

Cameron talked to Brigham Young University radio about positive relational energy and energizers.
Listen to interview

Thought Leadership Showcase

Rice University Professor Scott Sonenshein talks about his new book, Stretch.
Watch video
Julia Lee

Julia Lee and crying at work

Lee spoke to Michigan Radio about the value of authenticity in the workplace.
Listen to interview


The Center for Positive Organizations inspires and enables leaders to build high-performing organizations that bring out the best in people. We are a catalyst for the creation and growth of positive organizations. Learn more about our opportunities below.

Center for Positive Organizations
Stephen M. Ross School of Business | University of Michigan
701 Tappan Street | Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1234 734-647-8154

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