Spotlight Story

Leadership Happens Every Moment of Every Day

A globally visible expert in organizational behavior, Professor Kimberly Elsbach puts the power of collaboration to work in her research and in the classroom to broaden the scope of ideas and solutions.

“The culture of the Graduate School of Management is team oriented, and we recruit and attract students and faculty who want to be team players. In my research, I’ve done my best work when I’ve collaborated. It’s harder to see and explore all the ideas yourself. You need the insight and expertise of others.”

Leadership happens every moment of every day. You always have an opportunity to influence what other people do and why they do it by being a role model. I help students understand their leadership strengths and weaknesses, pushing them to work outside of their comfort zones – for instance, by encouraging those who are not ‘natural leaders’ to take the initiative.
– Kimberly Elsbach, Professor of Organizational Behavior

Professor of Organizational Behavior

  • Stephen G. Newberry Endowed Chair in Leadership
  • International Research Fellow
    Centre for Corporate Reputation, Oxford University
  • NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative
  • UC Davis Chancellor’s Fellow
  • Joined UC Davis in 1997

Course Taught

  • The Individual & Group Dynamics
  • Negotiation in Organizations
  • Business Policy and Strategy

Research Expertise

Leadership in organizations; perception and management of individual and organizational images; identities and reputations, especially images of legitimacy, trustworthiness, and creativity.


  • Ph.D., Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management
    Stanford University
  • M.S., Industrial and Management Engineering
    University of Iowa
  • B.S. Industrial and Management Engineering
    University of Iowa