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Strategic demonstration of problem solutions by groups: The effects of member preferences, confidence, and learning goals

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  • Aramovich, Nicholas P.
  • Larson, James R.

Abstract

Research indicates that groups perform best, and their members learn the most, when they solve problems with demonstrably correct solutions. These outcomes are often attributed to correct members demonstrating to incorrect members how to solve such problems. However, because few studies have directly observed group interaction (Moreland, Swanenburg, Flagg, & Fetterman, 2010), the extent to which correct members actually demonstrate problem solutions remains unclear. Assuming that groups are strategic and desire to solve problems both accurately and efficiently, we predicted that initially correct minorities would be more likely than initially correct majorities to demonstrate problem solutions. Results from two studies support this prediction, in the form of member behavioral intentions (Study 1) and observed group interaction processes (Study 2). Study 1 also highlights the role of confidence in this effect, while Study 2 reveals that demonstration is overall more likely when groups have a goal that encourages member learning.

Suggested Citation

  • Aramovich, Nicholas P. & Larson, James R., 2013. "Strategic demonstration of problem solutions by groups: The effects of member preferences, confidence, and learning goals," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 122(1), pages 36-52.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:122:y:2013:i:1:p:36-52
    DOI: 10.1016/j.obhdp.2013.04.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Littlepage, Glenn & Robison, William & Reddington, Kelly, 1997. "Effects of Task Experience and Group Experience on Group Performance, Member Ability, and Recognition of Expertise," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 133-147, February.
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    4. Laughlin, Patrick R. & Bonner, Bryan L. & Miner, Andrew G., 2002. "Groups perform better than the best individuals on Letters-to-Numbers problems," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 605-620, July.
    5. Tannenbaum, Scott I. & Mathieu, John E. & Salas, Eduardo & Cohen, Debra, 2012. "Teams Are Changing: Are Research and Practice Evolving Fast Enough?," Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Cambridge University Press, vol. 5(01), pages 2-24, March.
    6. Kyle Lewis, 2004. "Knowledge and Performance in Knowledge-Worker Teams: A Longitudinal Study of Transactive Memory Systems," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(11), pages 1519-1533, November.
    7. Sniezek, Janet A., 1992. "Groups under uncertainty: An examination of confidence in group decision making," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 124-155, June.
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