Zeynep Ton

Professor of the Practice, Operations Management, MIT Sloan School of Management


Zeynep  Ton Zeynep Ton is Professor of the Practice, Operations Management at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Ton is currently examining how organizations can design and manage their operations in a way that satisfies employees, customers, and investors simultaneously. Her earlier research focused on the critical role of store operations in retail supply chains. Ton identified operational problems at stores that reduce retail supply chain performance as well as store profits and traced these problems to the design of store processes and the management of store labor.

Her work has been published in a variety of journals, including Organization Science, Production and Operations Management, and Harvard Business Review. In addition, she has written numerous cases that explore different approaches to managing retail stores and labor. Prior to MIT Sloan, Ton spent seven years as an assistant professor in the Technology and Operations Management area at Harvard Business School, where she was awarded the HBS Faculty Teaching Award for teaching excellence.

Ton holds a DBA from Harvard Business School and a BS in Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering from Pennsylvania State University.

Faculty Media

  • Service Jobs Should Be — and Can Be — Middle-Class Jobs

    What almost no one talks about is how we can improve the low-wage jobs — mostly in the service sector — that already exist. Even enlightened business and thought leaders often view these jobs only...

  • 'The Good Jobs Strategy' and Precarious Faculty Employment

    Inside Higher Ed review's Zeynep Ton's book, The Good Jobs Strategy, and asks "Might this book force us to question the economic logic behind the shift away from prioritizing the creation of tenure...

  • The Financial Case for Good Retail Jobs

    Research from Zeynep Ton discusses how the retail industry can quantify both the true costs of operational mediocrity and the potential financial gains of building a better system.

  • The 'High-Road' Approach to Worker Compensation

    Compensation is more than just a good wage and benefits — employees need to be empowered to innovate and add value to their companies.

  • For American Workers, Time Really Is Money

    What employees want most is control over their work lives. Attract top talent with perks like telework, flexible hours, compressed work weeks, even unlimited vacation.

  • A Cleaning Company With A Lofty Goal: Transforming A Low-Wage Industry

    Zeynep Ton is featured in this Boston Globe article, advocating for higher wages as way for companies to maintain high performing employees and ROI.

  • Raising Wages Is the Right Thing to Do, and Doesn’t Have to Be Bad for Your Bottom Line

    The “working poor” are a growing problem in America — one that is increasingly embarrassing to the corporate elite. Business leaders who are morally inclined to do the right thing should and can...

  • Higher Wages Aren’t Enough to Turn Mediocre Jobs into Good Ones

    MIT Sloan Adjuct Associate Prof. Zeynep Ton, MIT Sloan Research Affiliate Sarah Kalloch, and Good Jobs Institute Managing Director Katie Bach write: "Higher wages alone are not enough to break this...

  • [Innovation@Work Blog] Are “Good Jobs” Finally Becoming Fashionable in Retail?

    Retail jobs have long been considered undesirable. Zeynep Ton told a TedxCambridge audience that retail jobs “are not just bad because they offer low wages and chaotic schedules, but because they...

  • [Innovation@Work Webinar] Why Good Jobs Are Good for Businesses

    Referencing research from her popular book, "The Good Jobs Strategy: How the Smartest Companies Invest in Employees to Lower Costs and Boost Profits," Professor Ton examines how organizations can...


Contact Information

Office: E62-590
Phone: (617) 715-4838
Email: zton@mit.edu
Support Staff
Name: Tyler Morse
Phone: 617-253-2656