Francis J. Flynn

Professor, Organizational Behavior
+1 (650) 724-0312

Francis J. Flynn

The Paul E. Holden Professor of Organizational Behavior

Academic Area:

Additional Administrative Titles

Director, Executive Leadership Development

Research Statement

Professor Flynn’s research focuses on three topics of interest: (1) How employees can develop healthy patterns of cooperation; (2) How the negative impact of racial and gender stereotyping in the workplace can be mitigated; and (3) How people can emerge as leaders and assume positions of power in organizations. His work bridges the fields of management and social psychology, leading to scholarly as well as practical insights on organizational life.


Francis (Frank) Flynn received his PhD in organizational behavior from the University of California, Berkeley. From 2000–2006, he served as an assistant and then an associate professor at Columbia Business School, joining Stanford GSB in September 2006. A winner of multiple teaching awards, Professor Flynn’s courses focus on leadership issues, particularly how young managers can learn to navigate complex political environments and build interpersonal influence.

Professor Flynn’s research centers on the topics of employee cooperation, work group dynamics, and leadership in organizations. His articles have appeared in Administrative Science Quarterly, Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Psychological Science, Strategic Management Journal, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, the discipline’s top research outlets. 

Professor Flynn has worked for the Department of Commerce in the International Trade Administration, the Institute for Business and Economic Development, and the Institute for Urban and Regional Development. He has provided executive education for various companies, including Bank of America, Boston Consulting Group, Box, Caterpillar, Cisco, Cooley, Facebook, Flextronics, Genentech, Goldman Sachs, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Intuit, Johnson & Johnson, Kaiser, LinkedIn, Logitech, Medtronic, Merrill Lynch, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, Prudential, Standard & Poor’s, Symantec, Twitter, Yammer, Yelp, and Yahoo! — training that focuses on improving employee decision making and interpersonal leadership skills.

Frank is also a graduate of the University of Notre Dame. He lives close to the Stanford campus with his wife, Christina, and his three sons, Colin, Jack, and Aiden.

Academic Degrees

  • PhD in Organizational Behavior, UC Berkeley, 2000
  • MS in Business, UC Berkeley, 1999
  • BBA, University of Notre Dame, 1994

Academic Appointments

  • At Stanford University since 2006
  • Class of 1967 Associate Professor of Business, Columbia Business School, Columbia University, 2006
  • Associate Professor of Business, Columbia Business School, Columbia University, 2004-2006
  • Assistant Professor of Business, Columbia Business School, Columbia University, 2000-2004

Awards and Honors

  • Spence Faculty Fellow for 2020–21
  • James & Doris McNamara Faculty Fellow, 2013–14


Journal Articles

Chelsea R. Lide, Francis J. Flynn
Academy of Management Journal
August 2023 Vol. 66 Issue 4 Pages 1102–1122
Francis J. Flynn, Chunchen Xu
Group Processes & Intergroup Relations
September 2022 Vol. 26 Issue 7
Francis J. Flynn, Hanne Collins, Julian J. Zlatev
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
March 2022
Francis J. Flynn, Alisa Yu
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
January 25, 2021
K. M. Kniffin, J. Narayanan, F. Anseel, J. Antonakis, S. P. Ashford, A. B. Bakker, P. Bamberger, H. Bapuji, D. P. Bhave, V. K. Choi, S. J. Creary, E. Demerouti, Francis J. Flynn, Michele J. Gelfand, L. L. Greer, G. Johns, S. Kesebir, P. G. Klein, S. Y. Lee, H. Ozcelik, J. L. Petriglieri, N. P. Rothbard, C. W. Rudolph, J. D. Shaw, N. Sirola, C. R. Wanberg, A. Whillans, M. P. Wilmot, M. van Vugt
American Psychologist
January 2021 Vol. 76 Issue 1 Pages 63–77
Matthew E. Feinberg, Brett Q. Ford, Francis J. Flynn
Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
November 2020 Vol. 161 Pages 1–19
Rebecca L. Schaumberg, Francis J. Flynn
Academy of Management
October 2017 Vol. 60 Issue 5 Pages 1859-1881
Francis J. Flynn, RL Schaumberg
The Journal of Applied Psychology
June 2017 Vol. 102 Issue 6 Pages 982-992
Daniel A. Newark, Vanessa K. Bohns, Francis J. Flynn
Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
January 20, 2017 Vol. 139 Pages 18-29
Magnus Thor Torfason, Francis J. Flynn, Daniella Kupor
Social Psychological and Personality Science
May 2013 Vol. 4 Issue 3 Pages 348-354
Robb Willer, Francis J. Flynn, Sonya Zak
Administrative Science Quarterly
May 9, 2012 Vol. 57 Issue 1 Pages 119-155
Francis J. Flynn, Rebecca L. Schaumberg
Journal of Applied Psychology
January 2012 Vol. 97 Issue 1 Pages 124-133
Francis J. Flynn, Ray E. Reagans, Lucia Guillory
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
November 2010 Vol. 99 Issue 5 Pages 855-869
Francis J. Flynn, Emily T. Amanatullah
Organization Science
July 20, 2010 Vol. 23 Issue 2 Pages 402-415


Executive Education & Other Non-Degree Programs

Advance your skills, career, and network with a tailored leadership program for Asian executives, the first of its kind from a leading business school.
Develop best practices and insights to generate and lead innovation in your organization; then put theory into practice with real-world projects.
Guide your organization through growth with innovative CFO training that blends financial expertise, strategic thinking, and leadership skills.
Learn to lead with confidence in this rigorous, general management program for executives on the verge of achieving even greater things.
Discover business growth strategies and build a stronger company designed to sustain progress, scale management, and facilitate market expansion.
Gain general management training — combining conceptual knowledge with individual experiences — and increase your impact in the nonprofit sector.
Effectively diagnose and solve problems using proven frameworks for executing change in this multidisciplinary strategic management course.
Act with power, navigate the workplace, and take the lead with new strategies and tactics in this unique women’s leadership program.
Communication is key to compelling leadership. Learn effective communication practices that increase your impact.
Evolve as a leader in an executive education program that reinvigorates and ramps up your professional journey.
Transform knowledge into impact and drive innovation and change in your organization with Stanford LEAD, our flagship online business program.
Explore international management, strategy, and leadership perspectives from both sides of the Pacific Rim with NUS Business School and Stanford GSB.
Make the business case for sustainability with strategic and financial frameworks, personal leadership skills, and a deeper knowledge of today’s sustainability landscape.

Insights by Stanford Business

December 12, 2022
Eleven articles to help you work, lead, and collaborate better.
September 12, 2022
Many managers don’t convey the right amount of information, but those who undercommunicate pay a steeper price.
March 19, 2021
An interview with Zoom’s CEO. A crisis-leadership playbook. A podcast on virtual presentations. And a word on how to close shop gracefully.
March 12, 2021
The mental judo known as “cognitive reappraisal” — minimizing the emotional impact of bad situations — can be good for the soul but bad for the firm.
December 06, 2019
Stanford GSB professors recommend the books they’re most likely to give as presents over this year’s holiday season.
April 19, 2018
Stanford GSB professors recommend their favorite books and articles related to the concept.
March 06, 2018
When it comes to work attendance, “guilt proneness” may be a bigger factor than job satisfaction.

School News

September 25, 2023
To make good decisions, sometimes you need to override your brain’s autopilot.
January 01, 2007
To attendees at the WIM banquet, 2007 from Prof. Joanne Martin