Adam Grant

Adam M. Grant (born August 13, 1981) is an American psychologist and author who is currently a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania specializing in organizational psychology. He received academic tenure aged 28, making him the youngest tenured professor at the Wharton School.

Adam Grant
Grant in July 2012
Grant in July 2012
Born (1981-08-13) August 13, 1981 (age 39)
West Bloomfield, Michigan, U.S.
  • Psychologist
  • professor
  • author
Alma mater
Years active2007–present
SpouseAllison Grant

Early life and educationEdit

Adam M. Grant was born in the township of West Bloomfield, Michigan on August 13, 1981 to a lawyer father and a teacher mother.[1][2] He grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan. Grant participated in springboard diving and aspired to be a professional basketball player growing up.[2] During high school, he was named an All-American in 1999 in diving.[3]

He received a B.A. from Harvard College, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Michigan in organizational psychology.[4] He worked as a professional magician during college.[5]

Academic careerEdit

Grant was hired by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to serve as an assistant professor of organizational behavior in 2007. After publishing a series of papers in academic journals, he was hired as an associate professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 2009, becoming the school's youngest tenured professor at age 28.[6][7] He was ranked by students the best professor at the university from 2011 to 2017.[8] In 2013, he wrote his first book, Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success.[9] As his first published book on organizational psychology, it explored the dynamics behind collaboration, negotiation, and networking. The book went on to be translated in twenty-seven languages.[10] Susan Dominus of The New York Times states that his book "incorporated scores of studies and personal case histories that suggest the benefits of an attitude of extreme giving at work."[2] In recognition for his work, Grant was named a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and a Thinkers50 Most Influential Global Management Thinker in 2015.[9]

A year later his second book, Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World, was published.[11] This study looked at the benefits for pursuing artistic avocations, constantly improving rather than constantly innovating business practices, and the benefits of procrastination.[10] The book became a New York Times bestseller and inspired a TED talk on the habits of original thinkers.[12][13] Reviews of the book were mixed. While Scientific American praised Grant's work,[14] The Guardian was more critical, commenting: "At times, Grant could be accused of straying off-topic, especially when he is dispensing advice. Children taught how their bad behaviour affects others develop a moral sensibility lacking in those who are merely admonished, he writes, without providing a clear link to the concept of originality."[15] He was named to Fortune's 40 under 40 the same year.[16] In 2017, he co-authored his third book with Facebook Chief Operating Officer (COO) Sheryl Sandberg, Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy. The book focused on Sandberg's grief after her husband's sudden death at a Mexican resort and insights from the psychology on finding strength in the face of hardship.[17]

On August 8, 2017, a software engineer from Google, James Damore, published his controversial 10-page manifesto that argued that there were a range of reasons why men were the majority demographic at Google.[18][19] Grant published a rebuff on LinkedIn which was featured on CNBC. In his rebuff, he summarized evidence from social scientists that in most technical abilities, there are "little to no" differences between the sexes.[19]


Adam Grant is the host of the WorkLife podcast.[20]

In 2017 Grant co-founded (along with University of Michigan professor Wayne Baker and entrepreneur Cheryl Baker) Give and Take, Inc.,[21] a company that makes a software called Givitas, a web-based SaaS platform designed to help organizations implement the principles from his book Give and Take.

Grant serves on the board of Lean In[22] and chairs the Creative Advisory board of EXILE Content.[23]

Published workEdit


  • Grant, Adam. 2021. Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don't Know
  • Grant, Adam; Sandberg, Sheryl. 2017. Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy.
  • Grant, Adam. 2016. Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World.
  • Grant, Adam. 2013. Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success

Grant has written hundreds of research papers, journal articles, newspaper articles, and blog posts. He has been a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times and a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader.[24]


Grant has won numerous awards for research, speaking, writing, and teaching. He won the Class of 1984 Teaching Award, acknowledging him as the highest rated Wharton MBA professor, in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. He has won over a dozen other teaching awards at the Wharton School.[24]

Personal lifeEdit

While in graduate school, Grant married his wife Allison; the couple has three children.[25]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "eStories". Retrieved August 30, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Dominus, Susan (March 27, 2013). "Is Giving the Secret to Getting Ahead?". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  3. ^ "1999 Mens Public School All American Divers". USA Diving. Retrieved July 12, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Adam Grant - Management Department". Management Department. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  5. ^ Give and Take - Adam Grant on YouTube
  6. ^ Dominus, Susan. "Is Giving the Secret to Getting Ahead?". The New York Times. Retrieved April 2, 2013. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ Maurer, Tim. "Are You A Complainer, Consumer Or Contributor?". Forbes. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  8. ^ Clifford, Catherine (May 18, 2017). "Why Wharton's No. 1 professor recommends keeping a resume of your failures". CNBC. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  9. ^ a b "Adam Grant - Thinkers 50". Thinkers 50. November 11, 2013. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  10. ^ a b Auerbach, Brad. "Book Review: 'Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World'". Forbes. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  11. ^ "Adam Grant, Original". Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  12. ^ "TED Talk".
  13. ^ "Option B".
  14. ^ Konkel, Lindsey (May 1, 2016). "Review: Originals". Scientific American. Retrieved May 13, 2020.
  15. ^ "Originals by Adam Grant; The End of Average by Todd Rose review – how to innovate and excel". Retrieved May 27, 2018.
  16. ^ "Adam Grant". Fortune. September 22, 2016. Retrieved May 4, 2017.
  17. ^ "Life After Death". Retrieved June 2, 2018.
  18. ^ Swisher, Kara (August 7, 2017). "Google fires employee who penned controversial memo on women and tech". CNBC. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  19. ^ a b Clifford, Catherine (August 8, 2017). "Wharton professor eviscerates viral Google memo: Differences between men and women are slim to none". CNBC. Retrieved March 12, 2018.
  20. ^ "WorkLife with Adam Grant". Retrieved January 22, 2019.
  21. ^ "Givitas - Knowledge Collaboration Software - Give and Take". Retrieved January 22, 2019.
  22. ^ "Lean In Founders & Advisory Board". Retrieved March 19, 2019.
  23. ^ Ramos, Dino-Ray. "Diego Luna, Gael Garcia Bernal Join Exile's Creative Advisory Board With Chair Adam Grant". Deadline. PMC. Retrieved February 19, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  24. ^ a b "Adam Grant CV" (PDF). Wharton.
  25. ^ "Award Citation" (PDF). American Psychologist. Retrieved March 23, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External linksEdit