Assistant Professor of Management
Research Interests: motivation, behavioral ethics, adversity
Professor Samir Nurmohamed's research aims to understand the processes and contextual conditions under which individuals can endure, develop, and succeed when they are the targets of adversity from others. Existing research shows that others' low expectations are detrimental to the performance of employees and groups within organizations, but Professor Nurmohamed is interested in understanding how individuals can derive motivation and develop when others question their capacity to succeed or treat them poorly.
In this vein, the majority of his research is conducted in the realm of two major areas: motivation and behavioral ethics. His first stream of research, motivation, examines how individuals’ relationships with others impacts their motivation in organizations, with a primary focus on how being perceived as an underdog can influence the energy and effort that employees are willing to invest into their work. His second research area, behavioral ethics, examines the processes by which leaders’ and coworkers’ actions motivate employees to engage in behaviors that are aimed at improving organizational functioning, such as citizenship and reporting unethical conduct. As such, whereas much existing theory and research places a strong emphasis on individuals’ cognitions or organizational and task structures in driving employee motivation, Professor Nurmohamed's research elucidates a social perspective by understanding how employees' develop and find success when they encounter adversity or negative reactions from others.
Professor Nurmohamed teaches a course on Power and Politics in Organizations in the undergraduate, MBA, and executive education programs, and the MBA core course on the Foundations of Teamwork and Leadership (MGMT 610). Before coming to Wharton, he taught the undergraduate core course in Organizational Behavior at the the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business. At Wharton, he has received several awards and research grants, including the Excellence in Teaching for the Undergraduate Division Award, Wharton Dean's Research Fund Grant, Wharton Social Impact Initiative Grant, and Lawrence Zicklin Center for Business Ethics Research Grant. He completed his Ph.D. in Management and Organizations at the University of Michigan, and holds his B.A. in Economics and Philosophy from The University of Western Ontario.