Jeffrey T. Polzer

UPS Foundation Professor of Human Resource Management

Jeff Polzer is the UPS Foundation Professor of Human Resource Management in the Organizational Behavior Unit at Harvard Business School. He studies teams across many settings to understand how interpersonal dynamics among team members can disrupt or enhance performance. He has taught a variety of courses in the MBA, Executive, and Doctoral Programs at HBS. He has also conducted executive training sessions for a variety of organizations including IBM, Novartis, Seagate, Jabil, Merrill Lynch, Royal Bank of Scotland, Citizens Bank, Bharti Airtel, Fresenius, Mercy Corps, and Ernst & Young.

Professor Polzer teaches a new elective MBA course called People Analytics, along with the doctoral course Micro Topics in Organizational Behavior. He has taught MBA courses such as Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development (FIELD), Leadership and Organizational Behavior, and Leading Teams.  He also taught the doctoral course Human Behavior and served as the faculty chair of Harvard’s Organizational Behavior PhD program. At HBS, he has received the Robert F. Greenhill Award for outstanding service as well as the Apgar Award for Innovation in Teaching. Before coming to Harvard, he taught courses in Organizational Behavior and Negotiations at the University of Texas at Austin and Northwestern University, where he won the Kellogg Graduate School of Management's Doctoral Teaching Award.

Professor Polzer has published his research in the Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Administrative Science Quarterly, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Psychological Science, and Small Group Research. He also serves on the editorial board of ASQ.

A native of Wisconsin, Professor Polzer earned a B.S. in Finance and Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and an MBA from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas, where he worked for Burlington Northern Railroad as a marketing analyst. He received his Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. He then taught and conducted research as an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas at Austin, and was a Visiting Scholar in the Program on Negotiation at Harvard University.

  1. Winner of the 2003 Outstanding Publication in Organizational Behavior from the Academy of Management's Organizational Behavior Division for "Capitalizing on Diversity: Interpersonal Congruence in Small Work Groups" (with L.P. Milton and W.B. Swann Jr., Administrative Science Quarterly, June 2002).