October 19, 2017

 10:00-11:00 a.m.

Please note: This event is for invited researchers only.

Growing Givers at Work: A Systems Approach to Prosocial Agency

Talk description:
Research on prosocial behavior has to a limited degree explored how organizations can systematically enable it as discretionary acts that requires prosocial agency, here explored as the purposive and creative use of resources in unique situations to promote the well being of external and internal beneficiaries.  We develop a framework for how organizations can grow givers at work by taking a systemic approach to the fostering of such prosocial agency. This framework combines research on prosocial behaviors with theories of social inquiry and work design, in particular as it relates to a Scandinavian tradition of workplace democracy. Four sets of complementary practices are described and illustrated. They include micro-level practices of perspective taking (facilitating forms of contact with beneficiaries to understand their needs) and relational job crafting (providing autonomy and building competence to craft responses to these needs), coupled with meso-level practices of experiential sharing (surfacing and reflecting on exemplars of successful giving experiences from elsewhere in the organization) and collaborative inquiry (being involved in a continuous inquiry about social purposes and goods). When in place, these practices ensure connection between what people want to do and can do well with what is worth doing.

Arne Carlsen is Professor of organizational behaviour and Associate Dean for the Major in Leadership and change at BI Norwegian Business School. His research deals with individual and collective growth in organizations, often inspired by narrative theory, pragmatism, and positive organizational scholarship. Carlsen has initiated and managed many research projects and worked closely with over 50 organizations, some of them world leading. His work has been accepted for publications in outlets such as Organization Science, Human Relations, Journal of Management Inquiry, Journal of Positive Psychology, Management learning, Management Organization Review as well as in Handbooks at Oxford, Sage, Cambridge and Elgar. He has co-edited four books and is currently Associate Editor at Management Learning.

Anders Dysvik is Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Department of Leadership and Organizational Behavior, BI Norwegian Business School. He received his Ph.D. from BI Norwegian Business School. His work has been accepted for publication in journals such as Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Management Studies, and The Leadership Quarterly. He is an Associate Editor of Human Resource Management Journal and a regular reviewer for several top journals. He is one of two Norwegian Ambassadors to the HR division of the Academy of Management. He teaches PhD. Executive, Master of Science and Bachelor programs. He is involved in research collaboration projects with a number of Norwegian and International organizations and is also hired to hold invited talks for practitioners on HRM issues.

Miha Škerlavaj is a Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior at BI Norwegian Business School and an adjunct professor at the University of Ljubljana. He is an engaged teacher and awarded researcher in the field of proactive and prosocial behaviors at work, interpersonal relationships and organizational development and change. Among many other venues, he has published in international journals such as the Academy of Management Journal, the Journal of Organizational Behavior,  the Leadership Quarterly and the Human Resource Management, and a book Capitalizing on creativity: Fostering the implementation of creative ideas at work. More at his bloghttp://www.mihaskerlavaj.net.

Research is the heart of Positive Organizational Scholarship (POS), and we want to make sure that we support each other in developing high quality research. To that end, we created the Adderley Positive Research Incubator for sharing and encouraging POS-related research ideas that are at various stages of development.

Learn more about the Adderley Positive Research Incubator here and direct questions about individual sessions to Amy Young at baldwin@umich.edu.