Two Professors Named to Thinkers50 Breakthrough Idea Award Shortlist

Babson College associate professors of management Tina Opie and Rob Cross were named to the 2023 shortlist for the Thinkers50 Breakthrough Idea Award, the first two Babson faculty members to be recognized with the prestigious management honor.

“The Thinkers50 Breakthrough Idea Award celebrates a Eureka moment in management,” according to the press release. “It is given to a radical idea, which has the potential to change the way we think about business forever.”

Opie and Cross were included among only eight nominees on the award’s shortlist.

Headshot of Tina OpieOpie was named along with Beth A. Livingston for their book, Shared Sisterhood: How to Take Collective Action for Racial and Gender Equity at Work. “ ‘Shared sisterhood’ began as a movement to drive gender and racial equity in organizations,” the release said. In their book, Opie and Livington “explain how to use vulnerability, trust, empathy, and risk-taking to build shared sisterhood in the workplace. They break the process down into three key parts: dig into your own assumptions around racioethnicity, gender, and power; bridge the divide between women of all backgrounds through authentic relationships; and advance all women across the organization and beyond.”

Headshot of Rob CrossCross, also the Edward A. Madden Professor of Global Leadership at Babson, was named along with Karen Dillon for their book, The Microstress Effect: How Little Things Pile Up and Create Big Problems—and What to Do about It. “With fresh insights into the problem of burnout in high performers,” the release said, their book “provides practical guidance on how to tackle the hidden epidemic of small moments of stress. Because these microstresses are too small to trigger the brain’s normal stress response, say authors Karen Dillon and Rob Cross, they become embedded in the mind and accumulate, leading to devastating long-term effects on physical and emotional health.” In July, the book was named to Financial Times’ list of business books to read.

The Breakthrough Idea Award will be presented at the Thinkers50 Awards Gala on November 5–6 in London, where the nine Distinguished Achievement Awards and the new Thinkers50 Ranking will be announced.

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