OMT WebOrganization and Management Theory Division of the Academy of Management
Note: On Monday, August 6, 2012, at the Academy of Management Annual Meeting in Boston, Candace Jones, OMT Division PDW Chair, introduced Professor Linda Argote as the 2012 OMT Distinguished Scholar. Below is the text of her introduction.
by Candace Jones
I have the distinct honor and pleasure of introducing Linda Argote as the OMT Distinguished Scholar. We all know Linda is an amazing and accomplished scholar. A brief look at google scholar will show you citation and publication numbers that many of us can hardly imagine, let alone achieve.
I asked colleagues for insights into what made Linda tick, her influence on them and here is what I learned:
I learned she is married to Dennis Epple. I had no idea!
An important lesson from Linda is not to worry that you will give a party and no one will come; it’s important to have good ideas and it’s important to take the risk of putting them those ideas out there.
Linda has a remarkable ability both to synthesize an area of research and to chart important new directions. She also has the courage to take risks. Committing to produce a work like Organizational Learning: Creating, Retaining and Transferring knowledge requires not only a great deal of talent and hard work but the courage to chart a new path.
Linda has an authentic love for scholarship and ideas. Her work always serves ideas and for the long run. This allows her to avoid traps that distract so many others.
Her work is programmatic; she has sustained interest in a topic: learning, knowledge transfer and group dynamics. Her work is also interdisciplinary. Linda is the modern day embodiment of the Carnegie tradition.
Being a successful Editor-in-Chief of Organization Science similarly requires courage — to assume responsibility, to make key decisions, to undertake new initiatives. She also ran a complex, decentralized organization like a well-oiled machine — an amazing job of coordination.
Linda also apparently lives her research; when she first moved to Carnegie Mellon she bought her first car — a Volkswagen Rabbit with a stick shift. This is noteworthy because Linda had never driven a stick shift so she had a crash course (without any real crashes) in learning by doing.
She has a charming tendency to misquote familiar sayings, as in “that is water over the bridge” and she takes the perspective of the other, including inanimate objects.
Linda grew up hearing her mother’s mantra “Organization is salvation.”
Linda is more than just an amazing scholar. She is a warm and generous person, who is an exemplary role model not only for women but for all scholars.
Linda mentors junior faculty in the full sense of the word: she looks at your papers, she keeps in touch, she looks out for your best interest. “I always trusted that she had my interests in mind.”
She is exemplary for building community; she has a talent for pulling people together.
Linda is influential for young scholars because she is doing research for the right reason — to advance knowledge, and because she is a great mentor. Her approach to scholarship is an encompassing endeavor, and doing it well involves taking care of the people with whom she works.
Tags: Candace Jones | Distinguished Scholar Award | Linda Argote | Organizational Learning
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