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Alexander D. Stajkovic

Alex Stajkovic
Associate Professor | Management and Human Resources
M. Keith Weikel Distinguished Chair in Leadership
4102 Grainger Hall


Alex is M. Keith Weikel Distinguished Chair in Leadership at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In 2007-2008, he was a visiting scholar at Stanford University (psychology). Alex received a Gaumnitz Distinguished Research Award in 2007 (WSB, UW-Madison), Mabel Chipman Excellence in Teaching Award in 2005 (WSB, UW-Madison) and Excellence in Teaching Award in 1998 (GSM, UC-Irvine).

Alex’s research focuses on Leadership and Organizational Behavior (OB) and has been published in premier psychology and OB journals such as Psychological Bulletin, Journal of Applied Psychology, Academy of Management Journal, OBHDP, Personnel Psychology. This research generated over 10,000 citations.

Alex has served on the Editorial Boards of Journal of Applied Psychology (contributing editor), Academy of Management Journal, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, South African Journal of Human Resource Management, Organizational Dynamics, and is also a member of the Advisory Council of Harvard Business Review.

Alex received his PhD (OB) and MA (Management) degrees from University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He has conducted executive education seminars globally (e.g., Australia, Chile, China, Germany, Korea, Singapore, South Africa), and has given over 80 presentations at professional conferences.


Selected Published Journal Articles

Sergent, K. & Stajkovic, A. (2020). Women’s leadership is associated with fewer deaths during the COVID-19 crisis: Quantitative and qualitative analyses of United States governors. Journal of Applied Psychology

Stajkovic, A. (2019). Cognitive Automation and Organizational Psychology: Goal Priming as a New Source of Competitive Advantage Routledge

Stajkovic, A. & Bandura, A. & Locke, E. & Lee, D. & Sergent, K. (2018). Test of Three Conceptual Models of Influence of the Big Five Personality Traits and Self-Efficacy on Academic Performance: A Meta-Analytic Path-Analysis Personality and Individual Differences

Stajkovic, A. & Lee, D. & Greenwald, J. & Raffiee, J. (2015). The role of trait core confidence higher-order construct in self-regulation of performance and attitudes: Evidence from four studies Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes

Latham, G. & Stajkovic, A. & Locke, E. (2010). Relevance and viability of subconscious goals in the workplace Journal of Management

Stajkovic, A. & Lee, D. & Nyberg, A. (2009). Collective efficacy, group potency, and group performance: Meta-analyses of their relationships, and test of a mediation model Journal of Applied Psychology

Stajkovic, A. (2006). Development of a core confidence higher-order construct Journal of Applied Psychology

Stajkovic, A. & Locke, E. & Blair, E. (2006). A first examination of the relationships between primed subconscious goals, assigned conscious goals, and task performance Journal of Applied Psychology

Stajkovic, A. & Luthans, F. (2003). Behavioral management and task performance in organizations: Conceptual background, meta-analysis, and test of alternative models Personnel Psychology

Stajkovic, A. & Luthans, F. (2001). Differential effects of incentive motivators on work performance Academy of Management Journal

Stajkovic, A. (1999). Fitting parametric fixed effect categorical models to effect sizes: A neglected meta-analytic approach in organizational studies Organizational Research Methods

Stajkovic, A. & Luthans, F. (1998). Self-efficacy and work-related performance: A meta-analysis Psychological Bulletin

Stajkovic, A. & Luthans, F. (1997). A meta-analysis of the effects of organizational behavior modification on task performance, 1975-95 Academy of Management Journal

Selected Submitted Journal Articles

Sergent, K. & Stajkovic, A. (2019). The effects of cognitive automation via subconscious goals on cognitive load across levels of task complexity: Evidence from three studies Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes

Practitioner-Oriented Publications

Stajkovic, A. & Sergent, K. (2019). Social Cognitive Theory Oxford Classics in Management


Undergraduate Courses

Leadership (MHR 365), Spring 2014.
This is a research-based course, covering some of the empirically well-supported theories of leadership. Academic disciplines of I/O psychology and OB are the knowledge base of this class.

The class starts with posing a key question: What is leadership? Frequently, and ambiguously, leadership is used as an ephemeral word for whatever pleases one to use it for. Ask several people to define leadership – you will be surprised how many different responses you may get. This may be ok in life but not in science. We need definitions to be able to frame questions right.

We proceed with the next critical workplace dilemma: How to achieve extraordinary results with ordinary people? Hire the stars or lead and motivate the people you have more effectively? Several motivation approaches empirically shown to be effective in predicting work performance are covered such as reinforcement (positive, negative, extinction), goal-setting, and self-efficacy.

Does it matter who does all this? If not, then studying leadership is of little consequence. If it does, then the question is where to look for empirically supported answers from organizations. This part covers research on contingency model of leadership effectiveness, transactional and transformational leadership paradigm, and research on leadership emergence and creativity.

The course focuses on learning by principles and includes psychometric leadership assessments (you can hardly lead others effectively if you do not know your own leadership style). We start building leadership skills by discussing the application of principles covered, completing goal-setting theory career project, and conducting transactional vs. transformational leadership personal style analysis.