Evolving Alongside Technology: The Academy of Management’s Journey into a Digital Future

Rooted in the industrial revolution, maturing with the digital revolution: The Academy of Management works with Impact Science to drive change and success

In late nineteenth century, the second industrial revolution1 necessitated widespread changes in management and organizational practices. People began to observe these practices and learn from mistakes to develop better techniques and systems.

Theorists would eventually emerge laying the foundation for what we today call Management.2 Soon enough, Management as a discipline burgeoned.3,4

By 1936, several universities across the United States taught management. In November that year, a few teachers of management met at the Quadrangle Club in Chicago. From this meeting the Academy of Management (AOM) was born, with the aim to advance research in the field of management.5

Almost a hundred years later, although the academic landscape has altered radically, AOM stands tall with over 20,000 members from over 120 countries, and it continues to grow.6

AOM adapted to the times as they changed and remained steadfast support to the management community as a space in which scholars and practitioners from across the globe could interact and exchange ideas. When AOM arrived at the twenty-first century, they had become one of the largest publishers in the field.

New Century, New Challenges

The 21st century brought two major challenges. The world was quickly going digital, and thousands of people and their publications were flooding the internet. At the same time, the debate on the research-practice gap raged on.7,8 What could AOM do to adapt?

As AOM planned its future in the digital world, Impact Science had the opportunity to grow with them, acting as advisors and providing more unique content creation solutions. At present, Impact Science’s work forms the first step in this domino of dissemination.

Impact Science Helps Build Up AOM Insights

John Pescatore, Director of Publications and Content at AOM, came up with a solution that materialized in 2018, AOM Insights.

AOM Insights9 comprises of short summaries of select academic papers that convey “actionable evidence” for management practitioners. These text summaries are accompanied by infographics and video summaries.

I’ll tell you a funny little story,” John says in conversation with Harini Calamur—Business Head of Impact Science, Cactus Communications—at the SSK Virtual conference in May 2020, “when I first thought about Insights. I went to my COO and presented it to her. I looked at her and plopped down five summaries that the Harvard Business Review had done, and they were all AOM authors. Fast forward two months later, and it was the easiest argument I’ve had to make. You know, what we did is we launched Insights.

The following graphical content is being created by Impact Science for AOM Insights 2020.

AOM Insights Infographics

AOM Insights Research Briefs

AOM Insights Animated Video Summaries

In addition, Impact Science helped promote AOM Insights posts on social media by creating little postcards of the summaries to push research at a glance.

Impact Science also fashioned cutouts of the infographics they had produced to help cultivate curiosity for Insights content on social media. This was a unique solution based on an idea that AOM had earlier implemented with their text summaries, in which they crafted first paragraphs that double-up as standalone social media posts.

The Impact

Because of all of this effort, and more, AOM is seeing their viewership grow. Their social and digital interactivity has also increased.

Speaking of the success of Insights even in this nascent stage of its development, John Pescatore says: “Before we had one single piece of content, a journal article that got promoted through social media once. Now we have a journal article that gets promoted to social media and infographic that is aligned with that article or research brief that’s aligned with that article. There’s 300% more content from one single article that we can then use to disseminate not only to our members, but now to our wider audiences.

A lot of our authors, whether junior or older scholars, those that are adept at social media,” he continues, “take those pieces that we create and push them out through their own channels as well.

With its expertise in research communication, Impact Science hopes to create a lasting partnership with AOM, building itself and the Academy.

To find out more about how Impact Science helps publishers and societies, click here.

Write to us at request@impact.science or fill in your details below to learn how we can help your research come alive!

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