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. His research aims to understand the causes of team 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, Young President's Organization, and Ernst & Young.

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.

Professor Polzer teaches the required MBA course Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development (FIELD) and is the faculty chair of the Organizational Behavior PhD program. He previously taught Leadership and Organizational Behavior, Leading Teams, and the doctoral course Human Behavior. 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. More recently, HBS awarded Professor Polzer the Robert F. Greenhill Award for outstanding service as well as the Apgar Award for Innovation in Teaching.

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. Research Summary

    Jeff Polzer is the UPS Foundation Professor of Human Resource Management in the Organizational Behavior Unit at Harvard Business School. He studies how people work most effectively in diverse teams. To understand the complexities of team functioning, his research focuses on the interplay among individual expertise and identity, interpersonal processes such as conflict, and team performance. Professor Polzer has published 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.