Areas of Expertise (11)
Shefali V. Patil is an educator and researcher who studies decision making in high-stakes, mission-driven organizations, particularly those in the military, law enforcement, emergency medical rescue, and humanitarian aid sectors. She is particularly interested in how employees balance their fiduciary duties toward their organizations and their responsibilities toward the beneficiaries of their work. Of late, she is engaged in a multi-site research program examining the effects of body worn cameras (BWCs) on police officer decision making, and behaviors in their communities.
Patil is an assistant professor of management at the McCombs School of Business, The University of Texas at Austin.
She is published in scholarly journals, and has received a number of research grants from both the McCombs School and Wharton School of Business.
Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania: Ph.D., Management 2014
Stern School of Business, New York University: B.S., Management and Organizations; and Marketing 2008
Summa Cum Laude
Media Appearances (3)
Empathetic cops struggle more with public criticism
In the study, which appears in Administrative Science Quarterly, officers’ ideology—liberal or conservative—determined how well they weathered perceived animosity and lack of appreciation from the public, says author Shefali V. Patil, assistant professor of management at the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin.
When some police feel misunderstood, it can impact their performance
The Conversation online
Amid a string of fatal police shootings of unarmed black citizens, the Pew Research Center ran a massive study in 2017 of 8,000 U.S. police officers asking them about their experiences.
How are Police Officers Affected by Public Scrutiny?
Texas Standard online
Shefali Patil, an organizational psychologist at the University of Texas, studies how employees react within their work environment. After a 2017 Pew Research study found that a majority of police officers believe the public doesn’t understand the risks and safety concerns they face, Patil became interested on how police officer job performance is being affected by public criticism.
Although considerable research demonstrates that employees are unlikely to be proactive when they view their supervisors as discouraging this type of behavior, we challenge the assumption that this is true for all employees. Drawing on motivated information processing theory, we argue that prosocial motivation can spark employees to be proactive even when supervisors are perceived as discouraging.
In dynamic task environments, decision makers are vulnerable to two types of errors: sticking too closely to the rules (excessive conformity) or straying too far from them (excessive deviation). We explore the effects of process and outcome accountability on the susceptibility to these errors.
We present a framework of the behavioral consequences of organizational identification as well as observers’ reactions to them. Our framework highlights two distinct motivational orientations that underlie organizational identification, one that reliably leads to conformist work behaviors and one that may lead to deviant work behaviors that violate the status quo to advance organizational interests.
Micro and macro scholars alike have long warned about “incongruent” work environments that sow confusion by sending inconsistent normative signals to employees. We argue that these warnings rest on the debatable assumption that employees do not have cognitive bandwidth and emotional resilience to do more than single-mindedly pursue internally consistent goals.
Managers face hard choices between process and outcome systems of accountability in evaluating employees, but little is known about how managers resolve them. Building on the premise that political ideologies serve as uncertainty-reducing heuristics, two studies of working managers show that:(1) conservatives prefer outcome accountability and liberals
prefer process accountability in an unspecified policy domain.
We present a minority influence framework that specifies how norms can shift in response to a challenger's consistent modeling, advocating, or inquiring about helping behavior, contingent on prosocial impact, status, similarity, work unit agreeableness and openness.
In this chapter, we examine the psychological state of employee work engagement. Our objective is to provide an overview of the engagement construct, clarify its definition, and discuss its behavioral outcomes. We discuss the development of the work engagement construct, which has led to many inconsistencies among scholars about its definition.