Body, Heart & Mind in Business: Creating Engaged and Collaborative Research Partnerships to Advance Knowledge on Well-Being & Performance at Work

Office of Alumni and External Relations    2019-11-10

Body, Heart & Mind in Business: Creating Engaged and Collaborative Research Partnerships to Advance Knowledge on Well-Being & Performance at Work

Guest:Professor Helena Nguyen and Professor Anya Johnson, University of Sydney

Host:Associate Prof. Zhao Xiaoping

Time:Wednesday, December 18th, 2019, 14:00-15:30

Venue:A305, Antai Building



The Body, Heart and Mind (BHM) in business is a large, highly active research group in the University of Sydney Business School. Our research seeks to advance knowledge on employee health, wellbeing and performance at work using rigorous, multidisciplinary, multimethod and multilevel methodologies. Our work has been published in highly regarded journals including the Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Management, Journal of Applied Psychology of Management Review, Journal of Vocational Behavior, British Journal of Management, and other peer reviewed journals. We are passionate about doing applied, engaged research and work closely with organisations to help solve important practical questions and to advance theory and knowledge on how to maximise employee performance, health and well-being at work. In this talk, we will present findings from some illustrative studies of the group’s research interest. In the first study, we investigate factors that facilitate compassion at work. We test a process model of compassion, investigating components of compassionate responding that includes appraising, feeling, and acting. We adopt a dyadic approach with 288 matched pairs of surveys from nurse-patient interactions. Our findings highlight that compassionate behavior is a regulated response influenced by both affective and cognitive appraisal processes. In the second study, we examine how employees draw on their internal resources to sustain their capacity to engage in emotionally demanding situations at work using research designs that captures the underlying dynamics of emotional processes. We present research on the processes by which emotions at work emerge and unfold across different time frames in a highly challenging work context.


Dr Helena Nguyen and Dr Anya Johnson are Senior Lecturers at the University of Sydney Business School, Work and organisational studies and Co-Directors of the Body Heart and Mind in business research group. Anya’s research is broadly in the area of Organisational Behaviour. In particular Anya investigates how employees regulate their emotions and cognitions in the workplace, and the relationship between the design of jobs and teams and outcomes such as engagement, wellbeing and performance. Anya received her PhD from Manchester Business School, her Masters in Occupational Psychology from the Institute of Work Psychology, University of Sheffield. Prior to commencing her academic career, Anya worked in management consulting in Hong Kong, the UK and USA. Helena's research is multidisciplinary and her interests focuses on understanding the complexities and dynamics of emotional and psychosocial processes at work. Helena received her PhD and Masters of Organisational Psychology from the School of Psychology, University of New South Wales.

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