September saw the recommencement of one of my favorite events: The Positive Links Speaker Series. It is like a monthly booster shot through the academic calendar. I leave each session enlightened by the research that is shared, and uplifted by the community that attends.  

Throughout the school year, Positive Links brings world class positive organizational scholars to the Michigan Ross School of Business to share their work in inspiring and practical ways. For those within driving distance, the sessions provide a welcoming and supportive community of faculty, teachers, students, staff, and organizational leaders—all trying to make a positive difference in the world. The atmosphere feels different to so many events I attend. To support those a little further afield, we stream most sessions on YouTube.
This year, we are excited to welcome a star-studded lineup to follow in Sarah Pressman's footsteps on the Positive Links stage. Engaging content will be provided by Professors Adam Grant, Carol Ryff, Andy Hoffman, David Cooperrider, Ted London, General David Perkins, and CPO's own postdoctoral fellow Julia Lee. We hope you will join us!

Managing Director, Center for Positive Organizations



6th Annual Relational Coordination Research Collaborative Roundtable

A partner event on transforming relationships for high performance
October 27-28, 2016
Portland, OR
Learn more

Positive Links Speaker Series: General David Perkins

Leading to win in a complex world
November 2, 2016
4:00-5:00 p.m.
Michigan Ross Campus or watch online
Learn more and register 

Positive Links Speaker Series: Carol D. Ryff

Eudaimonia in work and family life: Findings and reflections
November 14, 2016
4:00-5:00 p.m.
Michigan Ross Campus or watch online
Learn more and register


Positive Links Speaker Series: Andrew J. Hoffman

Finding purpose: Environmental stewardship as a personal calling
December 6, 2016
4:00-5:00 p.m.
Michigan Ross Campus or watch online
Learn more and register
Visit our website to see all upcoming events
Jane Dutton and Dave Mayer
Returning +LABBERS help shape student experience
+LAB Lead Fellows will plan projects for the 2016-17 +LAB cohort that immerse students in the theory and practice of Positive Organizational Scholarship. The +LAB is a co-curricular learning program that challenges students to be organizational change agents.


2017 Positive Organizational Scholarship Research Conference:
Submit your research or nominate an article

Our biennial gathering of scholars promotes research that inspires and enables leaders to build high-performing organizations that bring out the best in people. We invite you to submit your work and nominate an article to advance and celebrate qualitative and quantitative research in the field of positive organizational scholarship. Conference submissions and nominations for the Outstanding Published Article Award are both due November 1, 2016.
Read more

In the business of Joy: Menlo Innovations on

The ethos of Menlo Innovations (and its CEO/Chief Storyteller Richard Sheridan), a member of our Positive Organizations Consortium, was featured in an article titled, “No Bosses, No Titles, and No Offices. Just Trust, Relationships, and Pure Joy.”
Read more

Aspen Institute honors two Ross professors as Faculty Pioneers

Congrats to Andrew J. Hoffman and Ted London who were honored by the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Program as Faculty Pioneers for teaching and research that tackles society’s most pressing “grand challenges.”
Read more 

Scott DeRue and David Mayer in Harvard Business Review

Why are some whistleblowers vilified and others celebrated? DeRue and Mayer answer this question with research they conducted in collaboration with Maddy Ong and Ned Wellman, inquiring whether an individual’s place in an organization affects responses to their actions.  
Read more
Visit our website for more news from our faculty, students, and friends
Welcome new MBA students
Wayne Baker, Nathaniel Bulkley win ASA 2016 Outstanding Published Article Award
Congratulations to Wayne Baker and Nathaniel Bulkley who won the 2016 Outstanding Published Article Award at the American Sociological Association for their article, “Paying It Forward vs. Rewarding Reputation: Mechanisms of Generalized Reciprocity,” which examines how people’s decisions to help others are influenced by past experience of being helped and by a desire to boost reputation.

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 each month.

Center for Positive Organizations faculty and research part of new Employee Engagement Bootcamp

Thriving employees are 32 percent more committed and demonstrate 125 percent less burnout than their peers, according to research by Gretchen Spreitzer. With that in mind, Ross Executive Education partnered with CorpU to create an online Employee Engagement Bootcamp designed to boost productivity, reduce stress, improve job satisfaction, and create a winning culture. The program is structured into five digital learning “sprints” taught by Kim Cameron and Dave Ulrich, as well as Harvard Professor Shawn Achor.
Read more about the Bootcamp

5 Questions with Wayne Baker

Learn more about CPO core faculty member, Wayne Baker, in our monthly five question, five-minute interview series.

Andrew KillianQ: What is your favorite positive practice and why?

That's like asking which one of your children is your favorite! I can't pick one practice. So, here are three favorites:  Reflected Best Self Exercise (RBSE), Job Crafting, and the Reciprocity Ring. I’ve used all three in my courses for years and it’s wonderful to see the positive results they consistently create. All three are eye-opening, paradigm-breaking, and energizing activities. With the RBSE, every student gets to see himself or herself in a new light—as a person with strengths and positive ways to contribute to the world. Job crafting changes the way they think about their work and empowers them to make specific changes in their work life. And, the Reciprocity Ring is an experiential group-level activity that produces generosity, gratitude, problem solving, and positive emotions. The behaviors learned in the Reciprocity Ring are carried over into everyday life at home and at work. 

Q: What area of Positive Organizational Scholarship (POS) resonates most deeply with you?

Positive sociology. Positive sociology is POS at the group and organizational level. A lot of POS is based on positive psychology (as it rightfully should be). As a sociologist, I resonate most with the areas of POS that operate at the group and organizational level. Sociology has a lot to offer to POS and vice versa. For example, we've used social network analysis to reveal maps of energy networks in organizations, and tools like the Reciprocity Ring to create more energy in these networks.

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

Take a little more time off, don't work so much! I love the work I do and so it’s easy to spend most of my time working—sometimes too much time. Doing work you love doesn’t seem like work. But it’s important to have balance in your life. Make sure you have meaningful time for family, friends, church, community, and just plain fun.

Q: What was the last book you read?

I just finished reading The Wright Brothers by David McCullough. In addition to being a smashing good read, it’s fascinating to learn how SOCIAL invention is. The ideal of the inventor working all alone is a myth. The Wrights were secretive but their success depended on a network—other inventors, daredevils, the occasional well-connected aristocrat, and the everyday generosity of the little community at Kitty Hawk.

Q: What is one thing you cannot live without?

Sailing. I love the time my family and I spend north of the 45th parallel, plying the waters of the Great Lakes. There are times when we are so removed that we are completely off the grid. We get to experience nature up close and personal. Our favorite place to go is the North Channel of Ontario—one of the top cruising destinations in the world. Best of all, we’re together in a way that doesn’t happen elsewhere.



Sarah Pressman

The Surprising Effects of Smiling on Stress
Positive Links Speaker Series: September 2016
Watch video and view photos


Jane Dutton and Gretchen Spreitzer

Bob Quinn and Ricardo Levy

Bob Quinn interviews Ricardo Levy to discuss his unique experience of being applauded after announcing that he had to reduce the workforce.
Watch 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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