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Welcome to the Workplace Emotional Labor and Diversity (WELD) lab at Penn State

The central focus of our research is the challenge in balancing one’s self and work demands, with implications for both employee health and performance.  In particular, we study regulating emotions and coping with stereotypes and bias (i.e., diversity).  

Dr. Grandey is on sabbatical for the 2020-2021 academic year.  This years she is not recruiting new graduate students to her lab for Fall 2021.

Lab Supervisor Biography

Alicia Grandey photo

Dr. Alicia Grandey is a Liberal Arts Professor of Psychology at Penn State University. She has worked here since 1999, after receiving her PhD in industrial-organizational psychology at Colorado State University  and BA at University of Oregon. Dr. Grandey’s research focuses on occupational health with two main themes: emotional labor, or the managing emotional expressions as a required part of the work role, and workplace diversity, including gender, racial, age, national, and political differences at work.

Dr. Grandey has published over 50 articles in psychology and management outlets (e.g., Journal of Applied Psychology, Personnel Psychology, Journal of Management, Academy of Management Journal), plus 11 book chapters and the 2013 book Emotional Labor in the 21st Century. Her work  has been cited over 20,000 times, and featured in popular press including Harvard Business Review, The New Yorker, National Public Radio, Reddit, CNN, ABC, BBC, and others. 

Dr. Grandey has received funding from the National Science Foundation for her emotions research and to host a multidisciplinary NSF Workshop on Work Climate in Organizations.  For more information click the Research Tab above or view Dr. Grandey's CV.

Photo credit:  @LilyRayaPhotography



Research News:

How does the pandemic change "service with a smile"? See article series by Dr. Grandey on LinkedIn called Behind the Mask, including customers’ experience of Emotional Contagion vs. Viral Contagion, service providers shifting from People-pleasers vs. Mask-enforcers, and the intersection of the Racism Pandemic with the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Does sacrificing sleep make managers feel more – or less – productive? Forthcoming daily diary study in JOHP led by Dr. Gordon Sayre

How does workers’ “midlife crisis” affect career trajectories and leader emergence? Forthcoming response article in IOP led by WELDer Vanessa Burke

Are political views seeping into our work lives? See forthcoming review, led by WELDers Kristen Swigart and Anu Anantharaman, on how politics affects decisions and relations at work.

Does emotional labor predict daily drinking? New research on the daily effects of emotional labor and drinking, based on Gordon Sayre’s masters’ thesis, is now available at Journal of Applied Psychology.

What are the Taboo "Three M's" at work?  Recent paper on women’s bodies and stigma around them intersect with their careers, available in Journal of Management. See short blog about this article

What is emotional labor and how do you study it? See this forthcoming book chapter by for brief review and measures as well as concise review in Current Directions of Psychological Science.  See brief summary in Link to APS Media.

WELDer News:

We welcomed Cristina Gonzalez and Kayley Morris to our team this Fall.

Vanessa Burke is working as an instructor for Louisana State University’s management program for this academic year.

"Hooding at a safe distance: Gordon Sayre receiving his doctoral hood 6 feet apart from advisor Alicia Grandey"

Kristen Swigart and Anu Anantharaman are the lead authors on the winner of the *Outstanding Graduate Student Publication* in the psychology department.

Kristen Swigart received the Superior Teaching And Research Award from the College of Liberal Arts.

Gordon Sayre's (pictured left) dissertation on tipping and service worker wellbeing won the PSU Alumni Association Dissertation Award and the APA Dissertation Award.

Dr. Gordon Sayre defended his dissertation in February 2020.  This Fall 2020, he will start as assistant professor of organizational behavior at emlyon business school in Lyon, France. He will continue his work on employee health and well-being as part of the Cognitions, Behaviors, and Transformations Research Center. 

Katie England has been working as an HR Co-Op for Pratt & Whitney on their Diversity, Inclusion, and Engagement team. In this role, she helps with strategic planning of D&I initiatives and inclusion by supporting employee resource groups.