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Functional versus dysfunctional team change: Problem diagnosis and structural feedback for self-managed teams

  • Johnson, Michael D.
  • Hollenbeck, John R.
  • Scott DeRue, D.
  • Barnes, Christopher M.
  • Jundt, Dustin
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    We describe and examine three changes (personnel, process, and structure) that self-managed teams can make to remedy performance problems. We also discuss why self-managed teams may over-emphasize process and (to a lesser extent) personnel changes over structural changes. Furthermore, we describe and test two specific diagnostic feedback interventions aimed at helping teams make functional structural change. Seventy-eight 4-person teams of undergraduate students participated in two trials of a networked laboratory simulation task. All teams were initially structurally misaligned and subsequently received (a) no feedback, (b) one type of feedback only, or (c) both types of feedback. Results confirmed that structurally misaligned teams demonstrated dysfunctional change by changing process more frequently than structure, with detrimental effects for subsequent performance. When teams received the feedback interventions, however, they were more likely to change their structure and thereby improve their performance.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.

    Volume (Year): 122 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 1-11

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:122:y:2013:i:1:p:1-11
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    1. Alper, Steve & Tjosvold, Dean & Law, Kenneth S., 1998. "Interdependence and Controversy in Group Decision Making: Antecedents to Effective Self-Managing Teams," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 33-52, April.
    2. Moorhead, Gregory & Neck, Christopher P. & West, Mindy S., 1998. "The Tendency toward Defective Decision Making within Self-Managing Teams: The Relevance of Groupthink for the 21st Century," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 73(2-3), pages 327-351, February.
    3. Hollenbeck, John R. & Ellis, Aleksander P.J. & Humphrey, Stephen E. & Garza, Adela S. & Ilgen, Daniel R., 2011. "Asymmetry in structural adaptation: The differential impact of centralizing versus decentralizing team decision-making structures," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 114(1), pages 64-74, January.
    4. Gersick, Connie J. G. & Hackman, J. Richard, 1990. "Habitual routines in task-performing groups," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 65-97, October.
    5. Laughlin, Patrick R., 1999. "Collective Induction: Twelve Postulates," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 50-69, October.
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