Bill Kahn, Ph.D.

Bill Kahn, Ph.D.

Bill Kahn, Ph.D., is Professor of Organizational Behavior at Boston University's School of Management. He received his BA in Psychology from Clark University and his doctorate in Psychology from Yale University. He has published numerous articles in organizational and management journals on topic ranging from instigating and reacting to change, creating healthy work relationships, and the nature of leadership and authority.

Several decades ago he originated the concept of personal engagement at work, which has since given rise (much to his chagrin) to a huge survey and consulting business. In recent years he has specialized in the dynamics of caregiving organizations, about which he has published a book (Holding Fast: The struggle to create resilient caregiving organizations published by Routledge in 2005.) Bill has won several teaching awards and is a member of the editorial board for the Journal of Management Education. He also hosted for three years a Boston-based NPR segment ("Dr. Bill") in which people called in seeking help with workplace relationships.

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The Ostrich Effect

The Ostrich Effect is about how smart people at work can get stuck in difficult situations and unhealthy relationships. People are unable to see  and do what they need to see and do; their problems might seem to go away but in reality hide out and show again until they are recognized and dealt with. The set of topics covered have a wide range; they are linked by an understanding that the problems that appear on the surface are markers to more complex issues below. It is in excavating those issues, and bringing them to light, that they can be fully examined and resolved.