Yu Tse Heng is the 2022 recipient of the Academy of Management's William H. Newman Award for her dissertation The Grief-Work Interface: How Employees Navigate Work After Losing a Loved One, submitted to the Human Resources (HR) Division. The Newman Award recognizes the best annual meeting paper based on a dissertation and is presented to single-authored papers based on a doctoral dissertation completed within the past three years.
Yu Tse is an Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce, and her research examines the complexity of the bereaved employee experience and how workplaces can utilize compassion to improve upon that experience.
Yu Tse’s early career experience led her to academia. Prior to, and while completing her undergraduate studies with a major in Psychology at the National University of Singapore, she worked at a boutique consulting firm and the psychological services division of the Singapore Police Force, where she collaborated with psychologists on projects related to employee well-being, leadership, and hiring. She spent the early years of her doctoral career studying the implications of compassion (both toward the self and others) for employees. Immersing herself in this phenomenon inspired her to focus on the employee grief experience.
“My earlier research motivated me to think more deeply about suffering itself, which led me to study grief for my dissertation. As humans, it is almost inevitable that we experience the death of close others in our lifetimes. Yet bereaved employees often receive insufficient bereavement leave and return to work before they have processed and recovered from their loss. As such, I wanted to understand what the bereaved employee experience entails and how organizations and leaders can better support them through an incredibly challenging time.”
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