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Dr. James Smither, Professor

Dr. James Smither
"A valuable MBA is more than a collection of facts and knowledge. It's the ability to do things well, to lead with integrity, and to make decisions that benefit a broad range of stakeholders."

Degrees Held:

  • PhD in Industrial and Organizational Psychology – Stevens Institution of Technology, 1985
  • MA in Industrial and Organizational Psychology – Montclair State College, 1981
  • MA in Education – Seton Hall University, 1973
  • BA in Psychology – La Salle University, 1972

Career Highlights:

Jim teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in human resources management, decision making, training and development, and leadership skills. Previously, Jim was a senior manager in corporate human resources for AT&T where he was responsible for developing and validating employee selection programs for management-level positions. He also worked in strategic analysis and market research at AT&T. He received his BA (in psychology) from La Salle and has an MA from Seton Hall University, an MA from Montclair State University, and a PhD in industrial and organizational psychology from Stevens Institute of Technology.

Jim is a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. He has published over 55 scholarly articles and chapters; his research has been published in top-tier journals such as Personnel Psychology, Journal of Applied Psychology, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. He has served as a Consulting Editor at the Journal of Applied Psychology and as Associate Editor of Personnel Psychology. He has edited two books (published by Jossey-Bass) that present research/evidence-based best practices in performance management.

He has consulted with over 65 firms in human resources and leadership development. He’s worked with companies in a variety of industries such as pharmaceutical, telecommunications, semiconductor, accounting, airline, consumer products, aerospace, financial, packaging, casino, law, health care, education, and government.

A sample of recent publications:

  • Kim, K.Y., Atwater, L.E., Patel, P., & Smither, J.W. (2016). Multisource feedback, human capital, and the financial performance of organizations. Journal of Applied Psychology, 101, 1569-1584.
  • Flynn, B., Smither, J.W., & Walker, A.G. (in press). Exploring the relationship between leaders’ core self-evaluations and subordinates’ perceptions of servant leadership: A field study. Journal of Leadership and Organizational Studies.
  • Smither, J.W., & Walker, A. G. (2015). The relationship between core self-evaluations, views of god, and intrinsic/extrinsic religious motivation. Psychological Reports, 116, 647-662.
  • Smither, J.W. (2015). The fate of performance ratings: Don’t write the obituary yet. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice, 8, 77-80.

In which online MBA programs do you teach?

MBA General, MBA Management

Which classes do you teach online?

Developing Leadership Skills and Human Resource Management

What do you want students to take away from your classes? What do you want them to learn?

I want them to walk away with practical skills that make them more effective in the workplace. A valuable MBA is more than a collection of facts and knowledge. It's the ability to do things well, to lead with integrity, and to make decisions that benefit a broad range of stakeholders.

What advice would you give to those considering the online MBA program?

Be prepared to work hard. You will read a lot, complete many assignments, and engage with fellow students. The old adage is true: You will get out of it what you put into it.

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