Tröster, Christian, Ajay Mehra and Daan van Knippenberg

Structuring for team success: The interactive effects of network structure and cultural diversity on team potency and performance

Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 124 (2): 255-245, (2014).

Copy reference link   DOI: 10.1016/j.obhdp.2014.04.003

Abstract: This longitudinal study used data from 91 self-managed teams (456 individuals, 60 nationalities) to examine the interactive effects of a team’s task (“workflow”) network structure and its cultural diversity (as indexed by nationality) on the team’s “potency” (i.e., the team’s confidence in its ability to perform) and its performance (as rated by expert judges). We found that whereas the emergence of dense task networks enhanced team potency it was the emergence of (moderately) centralized task networks that facilitated team performance. These varied structural effects, moreover, were themselves contingent on team composition: the more culturally diverse a team, the more pronounced were the positive effects of network density on team potency and the higher the level of network centralization required for optimal team performance. The success of a team appears to hinge on the interplay between network structure and team composition.

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