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Professors Seek Organizations Interested in Research Partnerships

August 28, 2013
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Business firms and other organizations have the opportunity benefit from the School’s thought leadership by partnering with researchers to address business challenges they face. Cecily Cooper, associate professor of management at the School and her partner Craig Crossley of the University of Central Florida, are looking for organizations that need help on issues that could range from employee retention and onboarding practices to assessing the effectiveness of mentoring and other company programs. 

“Research partnerships are beneficial for companies because they are essentially a mini-consulting engagement but come at little to no cost to the company, depending on the scope of information and output the company needs,” says Cooper. “We will meet with the firms’ executive leadership to define their area of concern, develop an assessment strategy, collect data and offer detailed insight back to the company on the focal issue.”

While Cooper and Crossley will be helping partner companies, they will also be gathering data they need to conduct research in their area of interest -- trust in organizations. Cooper and Crossley have been conducting research on trust for over 10 years and are internationally-recognized experts in this area. Questions for their current projects focus on how trust is formed and flows in organizations as well as explaining links between trust and performance. 

Deliverables of interest to the companies will be determined up-front, and will vary depending on executive needs. Some companies may desire a half-day educational workshop for managers, whereas others might request the faculty to meet one-on-one with executives to help them further interpret the implications of the findings for their internal processes or strategy and help create an actionable plan.  Companies can also continue to use any assessment tools created free of charge in the future to track progress.

Cooper says space is limited and, for participation, organizations will need to meet three requirements: 1) have at least 250 employees, 2) be able to accommodate a two wave survey (baseline and improvement), and 3) be willing to share organizational structure and performance metrics (e.g., sales, turnover, performance evaluation) with the research team. Participation in research for the company as well as individual employees will be governed by strict confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements.

Interested organizations can contact Cooper at cecily@miami.edu or Crossley at craig.crossley@ucf.edu
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