The Department of Work and Organizations welcomed two new faculty members this fall. Assistant Professor Alan Benson teaches compensation, organization economics and negotiations. He comes to the Carlson School from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he recently earned his PhD in Management. Associate Professor John Kammeyer-Mueller teaches organizational behavior and human resources, and prior to joining the department, worked at the University of Florida. He earned his PhD in Human Resources and Industrial Relations here at the Carlson School. Both Benson and Kammeyer-Mueller have made susbtantial contributions to their respective fields through research.
Professor Kammeyer-Mueller's research examines how employee characteristics, emotional reactions and interpersonal relationships relate to behavior and attitudes.
"I have always been interested in learning more about people," Kammeyer-Mueller says. "I wanted to learn about how people adapt themselves to new situations, and what helps some people adapt better than others."
Professor Benson studies empirical personnel and labor economics. He analyzes "big data" for personnel management by using the analytical tools of microeconomics to make causal connections between firms' practices and outcomes. He hopes to apply his research beyond academia by engaging with companies and practitioners.
"I'm excited to be able to transition research to make a real impact," Benson says. "Some people really love their jobs, and others want to improve those jobs. It's research that makes a big impact on the world."
Both Benson and Kammeyer-Mueller are looking forward to engaging with students in the classroom. They hope to apply their research to real-world practices to illuminate concepts in their courses.
"Teaching is a great opportunity to think about how the research end of our work is going to play out in practice, and to learn about how practice can inform future research," says Kammeyer-Mueller. "The classroom experience is the best way to build a bridge between the academic perspective and the practicing manager perspective."
They are also excited to meet new colleagues and students as they start the semester.
"Carlson School students have a wealth of experience, and they bring their knowledge of what works, and what doesn't work, to the topics we're covering in class," says Kammeyer-Mueller.