Suzanne Gagnon teaches courses in Cross-Cultural Management, Organizational Behaviour, and Managing Resources within the Integrated MBA and Bachelor of Commerce Programs at Desautels. She joined the faculty in 2001.
Professor Gagnon's research interests include global workforce diversity, leadership, identities and organizational identification in international firms. A current study examines leadership development programs as sites for identity construction, drawing on socialization theory and critical research in organizational identities. Using qualitative and ethnographic methods, she studies the relationship between program conditions and processes and the types of identification that participants experience, focusing on international and culturally diverse workforces. This research has implications for designers of leader programs, as well as theory building in leadership identity dynamics as central to contemporary employment relationships. Professor Gagnon is also collaborator and co-author within a 5-year SSHRC funded Community-University Research Alliance (CURA) project entitled DiversityLeads/ DiversitéEnTête. Working in partnership, the project aims both to examine and improve diversity within leadership ranks of large employers.
A further research area involves the study of cross-cultural competence through analysis of the practice of 'experts' drawn from non-traditional cohorts. Professor Gagnon has previously published papers on identity, equality and diversity, ethics and human resource management, and the effects of performance pay on citizenship behaviours. With colleagues in the UK, she developed a framework for evaluating workplace equality, applying the theory of eminent economist Amartya Sen, which was published in the top human resources journal in Europe. She is a reviewer for Human Relations, Academy of Management Learning and Education, Leadership, the International Journal of Cross-Cultural Management, and Academy of Management divisions including Critical Management Studies.
Other research interests coincide with her teaching and external lecturing in generational differences at work, as well as peer mentoring and leadership as developing others.
At Desautels, Professor Gagnon has been involved in the re-design and delivery of the Organizational Behaviour Course Counsellors' Program, unique to Desautels. The program has allowed her to directly apply her research on leader development. She has also enjoyed revising and developing the faculty's offerings in the core area of Cross-Cultural Management. She was proud to be awarded Professor of the Year in 2008 by the Management Undergraduate Society. She regularly coaches student teams for international and national case competitions, and serves on the Advisory Committee of the Teaching Executives Program. Professor Gagnon has conducted a range of seminars for the McGill Executive Institute, training managers across different industries and the public sector in team building and collaborative leadership. Prior to joining McGill, she taught at both Oxford and Oxford Brookes Universities in the UK, and consulted in human resources and change management at KPMG Management Consulting.