Associate Professor

Head shot of Dr. MichelaBS (Maryland), MA, PhD (California, Los Angeles)

Contact information

Research interests

My research concerns a variety of influences on employee development, satisfaction, motivation and performance. Most recently in the area of employee development I have been working with graduate students to develop a framework for undergraduate students’ professional competencies. The framework considers various “inputs and outputs,” and highlights the cyclic process in experiential learning. Regarding satisfaction, an enormously important factor is person-occupation fit, so I have been studying this fit in relation to early adulthood attraction to occupations or careers, including entrepreneurial and other emerging careers (project management and UX). Concerning motivation I remain interested in vision as a component of leadership. Can a leader's vision influence the direction and intensity of employees' efforts? If so, how and why? Finally I am studying cognitive and social factors in the performance of innovators (including entrepreneurs) as they create new products or services. One focus here is on how the "representation" of the problem to the innovator impacts success in problem solving.

Selected publications and recent presentations


Book chapters

  • Michela, J. L. & Greenstein, A. (2008). Explaining the effects of managers' or supervisors' influence tactics on employees' reactions. In M. A. Rahim (Ed.), Current topics in management (Vol. 13, pp. 109-129). Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers.

Journal articles


  • Michela, J.L., & Floricel, S.  (2012).  Collaboration for innovation through knowledge representation (PDF).  Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Society for Professional Innovation Management, Barcelona, Spain, June 18-20.*
    *One of three papers nominated for Best Paper Award (out of ~300 papers presented, ~500 submitted)
  • Goyert, S., Michela, J.L., & Whittington, E. (2011). Enhancing motivation through personal visioning. Poster presented at the Annual Conference of the Canadian Psychological Association, Toronto, Ontario, June 2-4.
  • Moos, B., & Michela, J. L.  (2010, May).  Acting on a vision:  A study examining the role of a visionary presentation on individuals' motivation to support diversity initiatives.  Poster presented at the International Conference on Self-Determination Theory, Ghent, Belgium (May 13-16).
  • Derayeh, M., & Michela, J. L. (2008, August). Why and when workplace interactions can go wrong:  Multilevel mediation and moderation of workplace social stressor-strain relations. Symposium presentation at the Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management, Anaheim, California.
  • Hideg, I., Risavy, S. D., Michela, J. L., Condie, J. L., Soraggi, M., & Tsang, K.  (2008, June).  Emotional intelligence development: An experiential learning approach. Poster presented at the Annual Meeting of the Canadian Psychological Association, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
  • Michela, J. L.  (2008).  Vision in leadership, vigilance during change.  Invited presentation to the semi-annual conference of the PRAGMA Council of Southern Ontario (planners and elected officials).  School of Planning, University of Waterloo, November.

Courses taught in recent years



Training design and delivery

  • Emotional Intelligence Development for the Master's of Business, Entrepreneurship, and Technology (MBET) program at the University of Waterloo (uWaterloo).  Program co-designed with Professor Joan Condie of Sheridan College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning, and co-delivered with graduate students in Psychology at uWaterloo.

Editorial positions held and recent service to the field

  • Associate Editor, International Journal of Organizational Analysis
  • Editorial Board Member, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Attitudes and Social Cognition
  • Editorial Board Member, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personality Processes and Individual Differences
  • Ad hoc reviewer for
    • Academy of Management Journal
    • Appetite
    • Basic and Applied Social Psychology
    • Behavioral Research Methods
    • Canadian Psychology
    • Cognitive Therapy and Research
    • Current Topics in Management
    • Health & Psychology: An International Journal
    • Health Psychology
    • Human Relations
    • International Journal of Organizational Analysis
    • Journal of Accounting
    • Journal of Applied Social Psychology
    • Journal of Experimental Social Psychology
    • Journal of Management Education
    • Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology
    • Journal of Organizational Behavior
    • Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
    • Journal of Research in Personality
    • Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology
    • Management Science
    • Organizational Research Methods
    • Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
    • Political Psychology
    • Psychological Bulletin
    • Psychological Science
    • Psychological Review
    • Small Group Research
  • Member of the Ontario Psychological Association's committee for the Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award

Recent research grants

  • "Outreach" Grant for Development of Trainer Materials for Emotional Intelligence Development. Social Sciences and Humanitites Research Council of Canada, 2009-2011.
  • "Managing Innovation in the New Economy." Sub-grant to John L. Michela, Co-investigator; Sergei Floricel, Research Director; Roger E. Miller, Project Director, École Polytechnique, Montréal, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. 2003-2006.

Recent research findings

Findings promised to participants of research studies will appear here as they become available. Thank you for your participation in our scientific research.

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University of Waterloo

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