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Effects of Communication Style and Age Diversity in Innovation Teams


  • Robin Pesch

    (Department of Law and Business Administration, University of Bayreuth, Prieserstr. 2, 95444 Bayreuth, Germany)

  • Ricarda B. Bouncken

    () (Department of Law and Business Administration, University of Bayreuth, Prieserstr. 2, 95444 Bayreuth, Germany)

  • Sascha Kraus

    () (Institute forEntrepreneurship, University of Liechtenstein, Fürst-Franz-Josef-Strasse9490 Vaduz, Liechtenstein, Germany)


This study explores how new product development is affected by age and communication style diversity in teams. Results are derived from a survey study of 232 German SMEs and indicate that a diversity of communication styles in teams has ambivalent effects. On the one hand, it improves a creative team environment that facilitates product innovativeness and speed to market of new product development within teams. On the other hand, it increases relationship conflicts. Even though relationship conflicts have no direct impact on innovation performance, they hamper a creative team environment. Our results indicate that the beneficial effects of communication style diversity outweigh the dysfunctional effects on innovation performance in teams. Age diversity however has only a positive association with relationship conflicts.

Suggested Citation

  • Robin Pesch & Ricarda B. Bouncken & Sascha Kraus, 2015. "Effects of Communication Style and Age Diversity in Innovation Teams," International Journal of Innovation and Technology Management (IJITM), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 12(06), pages 1-20, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:wsi:ijitmx:v:12:y:2015:i:06:n:s0219877015500297
    DOI: 10.1142/S0219877015500297

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Steuer-Dankert, Linda & Leicht-Scholten, Carmen, 2019. "Diversity- and Innovation Management in Complex Engineering Organizations," 7th International OFEL Conference on Governance, Management and Entrepreneurship: Embracing Diversity in Organisations (Dubrovnik, 2019), in: 7th International OFEL Conference on Governance, Management and Entrepreneurship: Embracing Diversity in Organisations. April 5th - 6th, 2019, Dubrovn, pages 136-157, Governance Research and Development Centre (CIRU), Zagreb.
    2. Martin Ratzmann & Robin Pesch & Ricarda Bouncken & Carla Martínez Climent, 2018. "The Price of Team Spirit for Sensemaking Through Task Discourse in Innovation Teams," Group Decision and Negotiation, Springer, vol. 27(3), pages 321-341, June.

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