AOM Scholars On… Employee Engagement in a Post-Covid Workplace

28 Feb 2023
With massive changes in the workplace starting in 2020, including remote and hybrid working arrangements, various return to work policies, and layoffs in several industries, how can leaders foster productive employee engagement?

Watch the recording of AOM Scholar panel on Employee Engagement.
30 May 2023

AOM Scholars share their expertise and research-based, actionable insights on employee engagement best practices and how organizations and business leaders can best foster engagement in a post-Covid workplace environment. 

For the first time in the AOM Scholars On series, HR practitioners from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) join AOM scholars for an insightful and practical discussion that will benefit business leaders in a variety of contexts.

Specific topics include:

  • How organizations and business leaders should foster effective employee engagement in a post-COVID workplace environment.
  • Predictions on the top focuses for employee engagement in 2023 and beyond.
  • The stakes of getting employee engagement right, or wrong, while citing real-world examples of the challenges and opportunities in employee engagement.
  • Why employee engagement is a C-Suite leaders’ imperative and the case for why they must prioritize effective employee engagement.

This panel is AOM’s ninth Subject Matter Expert Panel in the “AOM Scholars On…” series that provides actionable, research-based insights to the most pressing issues facing organizations and workers globally. 

Visit AOM's Subject Matter Expert page for additional information and media requests.

Panel Moderator

Leon Prieto, Clayton State University

Leon Prieto is a Professor of Management and the Director of the Center for Social Innovation and Sustainable Entrepreneurship in the College of Business at the Clayton State University. He also serves as a Visiting Research Fellow at Cambridge Centre for Social Innovation, University of Cambridge, Judge Business School.

Leon's research areas are in management history, critical management studies, social issues in management and management education. One of the goals of his research is to “decolonize” the management curriculum by educating others about the often-overlooked historical contributions made by people of African descent to the fields of management and social innovation/entrepreneurship. He has published articles in respected academic and practitioner journals such as Academy of Management Learning & Education, Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Management History, Harvard Business Review, and MIT Sloan Review. His first book (coauthored with Simone Phipps) is entitled African American Management History: Insights on Gaining a Cooperative Advantage. His scholarship has received recognition from Thinkers50, the Academy of Management, and the United States Association for Small Business & Entrepreneurship.

Leon holds a PhD in Human Resource and Leadership Development from Louisiana State University, an ALM in Extension Studies, History from Harvard University, an MBA from Georgia Southern University, and a BS in Management from Claflin University.


Alex Alonso, Society for Human Resource Management

Alexander Alonso, PhD, SHRM-SCP, is SHRM's chief knowledge officer leading intelligence, insights and innovation functions, as well as SHRM's latest acquisitions the CEO Academy and Linkage. As leader of SHRM’s Research & Insights business units, his total career portfolio has been based upon practical thought leadership designed to make better workplaces and to grow revenue across industry. Alex's thought leadership has been recognized through various bodies including as an inaugural member of SHRM’s Blue-Ribbon Commission on Racial Equity in the Workplace.  His research has been featured in numerous media outlets including USA Today, NBC News, BBC, CNN, and more. He has served as a member of several speaker’s bureaus with more than 400 speaking engagements over the last decade.  

Alex's works have been recognized for their contribution to real-world human capital issues. They include being recognized with the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP’s) 2007 M. Scott Myers Award for Applied Research in the Workplace for developing the federal standard for learning and development of healthcare providers; a 2009 Presidential Citation for Innovative Practice by the American Psychological Association for designing performance management systems; and the 2013 SIOP Distinguished Early Career Contributions for Practice Award for extensive applied research on the link between human resource management and organizational sustainability.   

Throughout his career, he has published works in peer-reviewed journals, authored several chapters on community-based change initiatives in workforce readiness, and authored books like The Price of Pettiness, Talking Taboo: Making the Most of Polarizing Topics (just released), and Defining HR Success: A Guide to the SHRM Competency Model in Practice. Alex also serves as a columnist analyzing major trends in the workforce for TIP and HR Magazine. He has served on several professional society boards including as president for the Personnel Testing Council of Metropolitan Washington Area.  Alex currently serves on the Secretary of Defense’s Defense Business Board (DBB), the North American HR management Association (NAHRMA) board and the Zeal Capital Advisory board. He is a Fellow of SIOP, Division 14 of the American Psychological Association. 

Ellen Ernst Kossek, Purdue University

Ellen Ernst Kossek is the Basil S. Turner Professor at Purdue University's Krannert School of Management and the first elected President of the Work-Family Researchers Network. Elected a Fellow in the Academy of Management, and the Society for Industrial-Organizational Psychology and the American Psychological Association, Ellen currently studies how work-life boundaries, work-life-family and diversity employment practices impact women’s workplace inclusion and career equality. She also designs and conducts interventions and evaluates them in field experiments to help organizations and leaders implement work-life flexibility, and work-life cultural change and gender equality initiatives.

Ellen has organized a research to practice conference series on breaking bias to advance gender and diversity and an NSF workshop bringing together scholars on management and diversity on the organizational science of fostering work-life inclusion in universities.  Kossek has won many awards, including the Work-Life Legacy award for helping to build or advance the work-life movement;  the Ellen Galinsky Generative Researcher Award, (2020) for contributing break-through thinking to the work-family field; the Sage Scholarly achievement award from the Academy of Management’s Gender and Diversity in Organizations Division for advancing understanding of gender and diversity in organizations, and won and also  been a multi-year finalist for the Rosabeth Moss Kanter award for work-family research excellence and a best paper award (JOB) for research on diversity climate.  She recently was cited in a Stanford study as being in the top 2% of authors publishing in business and management. Her research been published in top academic and management journals and national media publications.

Ellen recently led in writing a commissioned report for the National Academies of Sciences on the effects of COVID-19 on the work-life boundaries and domestic labor of Women in Academic Science STEMM; and also has written reports on future work life policies for the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.


    Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., Society for Human Resource Management-SCP

    Johnny C. Taylor, Jr. is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM). Johnny’s career spans more than 20 years as a lawyer and an executive with not-for-profit and for-profit organizations, including IAC, Paramount Pictures, Blockbuster Entertainment Group and the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, among others. He has served as chairman of the President's Advisory Board on Historically Black Colleges and Universities and on the White House American Workforce Policy Advisory Board. He is a Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees at his alma mater, the University of Miami; and member of the corporate boards of Guild Education, and XPO Logistics (NYSE: XPO). Mr. Taylor is a weekly contributor to USA Today, a Fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources and a SHRM Certified Professional.