Full Professor

BA 1982, Communication Studies, Northwestern University; MA 1984, Education, University of California, Santa Barbara; PhD 1988, Psychology, Northwestern University

Academic Positions Held

Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, Professor of Management & Organizations, 1995 to present; Executive Director, Kellogg Teams and Groups Center, 1997 to present; Director, Behavioral Research Laboratory, Kellogg, 1995 to 2006; Director, Leading High Impact Teams, Kellogg Executive Program, 1997 to present; Co-Director, Negotiation Strategies, 2000 to present; Constructive Collaboration, 2013 to present; University of Washington's Psychology Department, Professor, 1988-1995.

Courses / Topics Taught


Creative Collaboration

Decision Making and Problem Solving

Leading Teams

Emotional Intelligence

Career and Recent Professional Awards; Teaching

NSF Presidential Young Investigator award, National Science Foundation, 1991-1997

Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford, California, 1994-1995

Grants: National Science Foundation, American Bar Foundation, Allen and Mildred Peterson Foundation, Citicorp Behavioral Research Council.

Professional Leadership

Leigh Thompson is a member of the editorial boards of Organization Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, International Journal of Conflict Management, and Group Decision and Negotiation. She has served on the selection panel of the Decision, Risk, and Management Program at the National Science Foundation and its program review committee. She was named a fellow of the American Psychological Society and is a member of the Academy of Management, American Psychological Association, Judgment and Decision Making Society, and Society for Experimental Social Psychologists.

Research Areas


Group Decision Making

Learning and Creativity

Team Performance

Representative Publications

Leigh Thompson is the author or co-author of over 110 research articles and chapters in edited books. Her books include: Creative Conspiracy: The New Rules of Breakthrough Collaboration (Harvard Business Press, 2013), The Truth about Negotiation (2nd edition, Financial Times Press, in press), The Mind and Heart of the Negotiator (5e, Pearson Prentice Hall, 2012), and Making the Team: A Guide for Managers (5e, Prentice Hall, 2014). 

General / Consulting

Leigh Thompson offers consulting and training in negotiations, creative collaboration, principled decision making, and leading high impact teams for numerous companies and organizations.

Consulting, Companies:

Abbott Pharmaceuticals, Akzo Nobel, AT&T, Baxter Healthcare, Cargill, Case, Caterpillar, CDW, Chamberlain Group, Chevron Texaco, Chiquita Brands, Chubb Insurance, Colliers, Bennett & Kahnweiler Realty, Compaq, Crate & Barrel, ConAgra, CSX, Cummins, Data Direct Technologies, Eisai Inc., Fresh Express, First Industrial Realty, Fleet Financial, General Electric, Gold Eagle, Heller Financial, Hollister, Inovalon, Jefferson Wells, Lamb Weston, MacLean-Fogg, Microsoft, OfficeMax, Novartis, OpenConnect Systems, Premier Healthcare, Prudential, Sears Holdings, Schneider Electric, Selective Insurance, Sherwin Williams, Storaenso, Truven Healthcare, UBS Asset Management, Unilever, UnitedHealth Group

Consulting, Organizations:

American Bar Association, American Corporate Counsel Association, American Medical Association, American Orthopaedic Association, Chicago Office of Tourism, Children's Memorial Hospital, Evanston Northwestern Healthcare, Federal Reserve, Illinois Attorney General, Illinois Department of Professional Regulation, Sandia National Laboratories, Society of Automotive Engineers, University of Kansas, Venture Club of Indiana, Washington State Attorney General, Washington State Trial Lawyers