Management Global Teams
by
Bradley L. Kirkman, Sal Mistry
  • LAST REVIEWED: 15 May 2017
  • LAST MODIFIED: 27 September 2017
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199846740-0006

Introduction

Globalization continues to occupy headlines, and thus the minds of business professionals throughout the world. As a consequence of globalization, organizations have increasingly expanded the markets they serve while simultaneously relying on diverse labor pools to exceed both current and future customer needs. Accordingly, global teams (GTs) have proliferated, relying on the diverse talents within each of these teams to meet organizational goals of reaching overseas markets and to execute and implement complex business strategies. GTs, also called multinational work teams, are defined as a specific type of work team in which members come from two or more national or cultural backgrounds. While the definition we adopt for GTs does not necessarily imply that members are geographically distributed (i.e., working virtually), we do acknowledge that most of today’s GTs do work primarily virtually, and thus our review includes research both on GTs and on global virtual teams (GVTs).

Core Texts

Management and organizational scholars have taken note of the benefits of GTs. A book written on managing across national and geographic boundaries, Bartlett and Ghoshal 1998, asserts that global teams serve as the primary vehicle that organizations use to offset pressures from customer demands, emerging and converging markets, and resource availability, ultimately helping organizations achieve global efficiency. This makes sense: Jarvenpaa and Leidner 1999 maintains that the benefits of GTs are that they can be recomposed and reassigned to respond to shifting opportunities in global markets to meet ever-changing task requirements in highly turbulent and dynamic global business environments. Other scholars have devoted their attention to discovering when GT can be effective. For example, Marquardt and Horvath 2001 identifies five major challenges to GTs and proposes a three-level model to offset these challenges. Adler 2008, an influential book on international management, takes a different view on global teams, stating that GTs, on the basis of extreme assets and liabilities, tend to be either highly effective or highly ineffective, with single-culture groups most likely being moderately effective. Earley and Gibson 2002 also weighs in on the inputs, such as organizational and member attributes that guide the processes of team interaction. Extending this line of inquiry on inputs, Lane, et al. 2003 asserts that leaders serve a central role in global team effectiveness. More recently, scholars have focused their attention on global virtual teams (GVTs). For example, Gibson and Cohen 2003 offers many practical suggestions on developing global teams, and Kirkman and Mathieu 2007 describes necessary conditions for GVT effectiveness. Hence, at present it seems that most scholarly work on global teams tends to focus on their degree of virtualness, with the future of this literature also going in the same direction.

  • Adler, Nancy J. International Dimensions of Organizational Behavior. 5th ed. Belmont, CA: Thomson South-Western, 2008.

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    Adler posits that multicultural groups will tend to be either highly effective or highly ineffective, with single-culture groups most likely being moderately effective. The author also discusses several moderating factors, ranging from the type of task to the behavioral styles of leaders, that influence multicultural group effectiveness.

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  • Bartlett, Christopher A., and Sumantra Ghoshal. Managing across Borders: The Transnational Solution. 2d ed. Boston: Harvard Business School, 1998.

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    The authors use a mix of academic research and business cases to demonstrate effective management of transnational corporations. In addition, they suggest that some organizations use teams primarily to help achieve global efficiency (e.g., to develop regional or worldwide cost advantages, or to standardize designs and operations).

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  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Cristina B. Gibson. Multinational Work Teams: A New Perspective. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 2002.

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    Authors propose a comprehensive framework on multinational teams (MNTs) that includes individual-level features of team members (inputs), organizational context (inputs), and team interaction (processes). Central to their framework are the concepts of integration, differentiation, and equilibrium, which serve to link the processes between various levels of analysis.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., and Susan G. Cohen. “The Development of Global Virtual Teams.” In Virtual Teams That Work: Creating Conditions for Virtual Team Effectiveness. Edited by Cristina B. Gibson and Susan G. Cohen, 353–380. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003.

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    Authors offer practical suggestions on developing various facets of GVTs. Initial conditions include task definition, selection of personnel, and clustering teammates by geography. Some identified processes for development include spending non-work time together, having a trained facilitator, sense making (through members sharing stories), and creating a shared identity (team logo and slogan). Maturation is accomplished through integration (i.e., frequent communication).

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  • Jarvenpaa, Sirkka L., and Dorothy E. Leidner. “Communication and Trust in Global Virtual Teams.” Organization Science 10.6 (1999): 791–815.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.10.6.791Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors manipulate the national culture (country of origin) composition of teams to find that cultural composition affects the formation of trust in GVTs. Specifically, authors found that in GVTs, trust takes on the form of swift trust, with some variations (i.e., trust may be imported or created through communication behavior).

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., and John E. Mathieu. “The Dimensions and Antecedents of Team Virtuality.” Journal of Management 3.5 (2007): 700–718.

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    Authors define team virtuality by using three dimensions: “(a) the extent to which team members use virtual tools to coordinate and execute team processes (including communication media such as e-mail and videoconferencing and work tools such as group decision support systems), (b) the amount of informational value provided by such tools, and (c) the synchronicity of team member virtual interaction” (p. 702).

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  • Lane, Henry W., Martha L. Maznevski, Mark E. Mendenhall, and Jeanne McNett. “Designing and Forming Effective Global Teams.” In The Blackwell Handbook of Global Management: A Guide to Managing Complexity. Edited by Henry W. Lane, 199–226. Oxford: Blackwell, 2003.

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    GT effectiveness is predicated on leaders addressing complexity and structuring a team to manage complexity. When forming a team, a leader plays a crucial role in designing task processes that include establishing a team vision, mission, and objectives; determining roles, responsibilities, and interaction norms; selecting and adopting the right technology; and finally creating a sense of community.

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  • Marquardt, Michael J., and Lisa Horvath. Global Teams: How Top Multinationals Span Boundaries and Cultures with High-Speed Teamwork. Palo Alto, CA: Davies-Black, 2001.

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    Authors identify five major challenges to GTs: managing cultural diversity, differences, and conflicts; handling geographic distances, dispersion, and despair; dealing with coordination and control issues; maintaining communication richness over distances; and developing and maintaining “teamness.” To resolve these challenges, the authors suggest various strategies and propose a three-level GT model.

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General Overviews

Kozlowski and Bell state that work teams “(a) are composed of two or more individuals, (b) who exist to perform organizationally relevant tasks, (c) share one or more common goals, (d) exhibit task interdependencies (i.e., workflow, goals, knowledge, and outcomes), (e) interact socially (face-to-face or, increasingly, virtually), (f) maintain and manage boundaries, and (g) are embedded in an organizational context that sets boundaries, constrains the team, and influences exchanges with other units in the broader entity” (in “Work Groups and Teams in Organizations,” [Kozlowski and Bell 2013], p. 415). Excellent reviews of the teams and groups literature include Bettenhausen 1991; Jackson, et al. 2003; Mathieu, et al. 2008; and Wageman, et al. 2012. One specific type of team is a GT. Many different labels have been used interchangeably to describe GTs, including multinational teams, multinational work teams, multicultural teams, transnational teams, virtual teams, and global virtual teams (GVTs). Regardless of the label used, Earley and Gibson 2002 defines such teams as a “specific type of . . . the more general form team (i.e., two or more individuals who interact directly or indirectly for the accomplishment of a common goal) inasmuch as members must come from two or more national or cultural backgrounds” (p. 3). Finally, Cohen and Gibson 2003 defines virtual teams as having three attributes: (1) members having interdependent tasks, sharing responsibilities for outcomes, and collectively managing their relationships across organizational boundaries; (2) members are geographically dispersed; and (3) rather than face-to-face communication, the team members rely on technologically based communication. According to Martins, et al. 2004, within industry today, most GTs lie on a continuum between being fully virtual or fully face to face. Gibson, et al. 2014 specifies the differences and the similarities of both GT and GVTs, while Gilson, et al. 2015 focuses on GVTs. Therefore, to fully capture the essence of GTs, this article provides an overview, using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework, both of face-to-face GTs and GVTs. Excellent work on evaluating VT/GVT effectiveness is found in Taras, et al. 2013 and Gilson, et al. 2013.

  • Bettenhausen, Kenneth L. “Five Years of Group Research: What We Have Learned and What Needs to Be Addressed.” Journal of Management 17.2 (1991): 345–381.

    DOI: 10.1177/014920639101700205Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Between 1986 and 1989, the author found that only one study included an examination of the effects of cultural, racial, or ethnic differences on group behavior.

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  • Cohen, Susan G., and Cristina B. Gibson, eds. Virtual Teams That Work: Creating Conditions for Virtual Team Effectiveness. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003.

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    Authors focus on creating practical conditions for effective virtual teamwork. In each chapter, both academics and practitioners provide thoughts and perspectives relevant to practitioner issues regarding virtual team implementation. In general, the authors’ ideas converge with four “enabling conditions” of virtual team effectiveness: (1) a shared understanding, (2) integration, (3) mutual trust, and (4) selection.

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  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Cristina B. Gibson. Multinational Work Teams: A New Perspective. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 2002.

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    Authors propose a comprehensive framework on multinational teams (MNTs) that includes individual-level features of team members (inputs), organizational context (inputs), and team interaction (processes). Central to their framework are the concepts of integration, differentiation, and equilibrium, which serve to link the processes between various levels of analysis.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., Laura Huang, Bradley L. Kirkman, and Debra L. Shapiro. “Where Global and Virtual Meet: The Value of Examining the Intersection of These Elements in Twenty-First-Century Teams.” Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behavior 1.1 (2014): 217–244.

    DOI: 10.1146/annurev-orgpsych-031413-091240Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Since virtuality in teams (e.g., pertaining to the use of electronic media) and the global nature of teams (e.g., national and cultural differences) contain elements that often coincide, this chapter first reviews prior research that examines both. The authors then elaborate on potential interactions and set forth future research directions.

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  • Gilson, Lucy L., M. Travis Maynard, and Erich B. Bergiel. “Virtual Team Effectiveness: An Experiential Activity.” Small Group Research 44.4 (2013): 412–427.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496413488216Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors highlight some of the key facets of the virtual team activity they developed, including best practices, debriefing sessions, and pedagogical solutions.

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  • Gilson, Lucy L., M. Travis Maynard, Nicole C. Jones Young, Matti Vartiainen, and Marko Hakonen. “Virtual Teams Research: 10 Years, 10 Themes, and 10 Opportunities.” Journal of Management 41.5 (2015): 1313–1337.

    DOI: 10.1177/0149206314559946Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    This review organizes the last ten years of empirical work on vitual teams centered on ten main themes and then offers ten opportunities for future research: study setting, generational impacts, methodological considerations, new and emerging technologies, member mobility, subgroups, team adaptation, transition processes and planning, creativity, and team member well-being.

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  • Jackson, Susan E., Aparna Joshi, and Niclas L. Erhardt. “Recent Research on Team and Organizational Diversity: SWOT Analysis and Implications.” Journal of Management 29.6 (2003): 801–830.

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    Authors review academic literature and identify four categories in which opportunities for further research exist, including frequently studied cultural attributes, the consequences of diversity, the role of context, and multilevel complexities. Other areas of opportunity include incorporating the use of advanced statistical tools and multilevel phenomena more accurately.

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  • Kozlowski, Steve W. J., and Bradford S. Bell. “Work groups and teams in organizations: Review update.” In Handbook of Psychology: Vol. 12. Industrial and Organizational Psychology. Edited by Neal W. Schmitt and Scott Highhouse, 412–469. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2013.

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    Authors review the literature and isolate six opportunities for future research on work teams. These include more fully examining (1) critical contingencies for different team types; (2) team composition effects; (3) team stages; (4) cognitive, affective/motivational, and behavioral processes; (5) team leadership and motivation; and (6) group longevity on team processes and effectiveness.

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  • Martins, Luis L., Lucy L. Gilson, and M. Travis Maynard. “Virtual Teams: What Do We Know and Where Do We Go from Here?” Journal of Management 30.6 (2004): 805–835.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.jm.2004.05.002Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors review the research on virtual teams in an effort to assess the state of the literature. After examining existing definitions of virtual teams, the authors propose an integrative definition that suggests that all teams may be defined in terms of their extent of virtualness. Some suggested areas include methodological and theoretical considerations.

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  • Mathieu, John E., M. Travis Maynard, Tammy L. Rapp, and Lucy L. Gilson. “Team Effectiveness, 1997–2007: A Review of Recent Advancements and a Glimpse into the Future.” Journal of Management 34.3 (2008): 410–476.

    DOI: 10.1177/0149206308316061Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors organize their review of twenty-five years of academic research on teams, using the IEPO framework. In addition, they detail how the framework has evolved from input-process-outcome (IPO) to IEPO (input-mediator-process-outcome, or IMPO).

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  • Shapiro, Debra L., Mary Ann Von Glinow, and Joseph L. C. Cheng, eds. Managing Multinational Teams: Global Perspectives. Amsterdam: Elsevier JAI, 2005.

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    Provides an overview on effectively managing multinational teams that includes (1) intrapersonal dynamics (e.g., cultural intelligence effects), (2) intrateam dynamics (e.g., team diversity effects), (3) external team dynamics (i.e., the effect of macro variables), and (4) micro and macro levels.

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  • Taras, Vas, Dan V. Caprar, Daniel Rottig, et al. “A Global Classroom? Evaluating the Effectiveness of Global Virtual Collaboration as a Teaching Tool in Management Education.” Academy of Management Learning & Education 12.3 (2013): 414–435.

    DOI: 10.5465/amle.2012.0195Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    A sample of six thousand students from nearly eighty universities in forty-three countries, who worked in global virtual teams for two months as part of their international management courses, revealed challenges and limitations of using global virtual team projects for learning and education.

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  • Wageman, Ruth, Heidi Gardner, and Mark Mortensen. “The Changing Ecology of Teams: New Directions for Teams Research.” In Special Issue: The Changing Ecology of Teams: New Forms, New Work, New Leadership—Not Your Grandfather’s Work Team. Journal of Organizational Behavior 33.3 (2012): 301–315.

    DOI: 10.1002/job.1775Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors recognize that previously held views of teams may not apply to business life; they thus explore what is gained by theorizing, researching, and understanding the many new forms of collaboration in the early 21st century.

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Inputs–Emergent States–Process–Outputs

Because our review of the literature on GTs and global virtual teams (GVTs) is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework, we provide this brief section to give an overview of the model. McGrath 1964 first introduced the input-process-outcome (IPO) framework several decades ago. Since its introduction, works such as Mathieu, et al. 2008 (cited under General Overviews) and Ilgen, et al. 2005 have used the IEPO framework as a potent unifying model for studying team effectiveness. According to Mathieu, et al. 2008, an input refers to antecedent factors that allow and limit members’ interactions. Inputs include individual team members’ characteristics, team-level factors, and organizational and contextual factors. The combinations of these inputs impel team processes (members’ interactions directed toward task accomplishment), and these processes appear in emergent states (trust, cohesion, potency, etc.). Processes and emergent states are important because they describe how team inputs are transformed into outcomes. Broadly speaking, outcomes (performance quality and quantity, learning, innovation, and affective reactions such as satisfaction, commitment, and viability) are results and by-products of processes and emergent states that are of value to one or more organizational members.

  • Ilgen, Daniel R., John R. Hollenbeck, Michael Johnson, and Dustin Jundt. “Teams in Organizations: From Input-Process-Output Models to IMOI Models.” Annual Review of Psychology 56 (2005): 517–543.

    DOI: 10.1146/annurev.psych.56.091103.070250Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors review research and theory relevant to work groups and teams. To organize their review, the authors use the inputs-mediators-outputs-inputs (IMOI) framework. Their review yields two primary conclusions: (1) a common theoretical and methodical convergence exists among scholars who study groups and teams, and (2) existing empirical research is less cohesive and coherent.

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  • McGrath, Joseph E. Social Psychology: A Brief Introduction. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1964.

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    Among other things, the author offers the IPO framework to analyze intrateam dynamics.

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Face-to-Face Global Team Inputs

This section, like the sections Face-to-Face Global Team Processes, Face-to-Face Global Team Outcomes, and Face-to-Face Global Team Emergent States, is focused on inputs, the “I” of the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework. Inputs include individual-, team-, and organizational-level factors.

Individual-Level Factors

Individual-level team input factors include two subfactors: surface-level characteristics (national/cultural origin and gender) and deep-level characteristics (personality, attitudes, opinions, cognitions, competencies, information, and values), which become known only over time through verbal and nonverbal communication. Several researchers have studied the effects of surface-level subfactors (national/cultural origin) on team and organizational effectiveness, performance, and satisfaction. For example, Elron 1997 found that top management team (TMT) cultural heterogeneity was positively related to TMT performance and conflict; however, conflict was negatively related to TMT performance. Kirkman, et al. 2013 finds that nationality diversity is curvilinearly related to community performance and that psychological safety and the extent of rich communication media use affect this relationship. Likewise, Nielsen and Nielsen 2013 finds that national diversity is more strongly related to performance under certain conditions. Another study, Earley and Mosakowski 2000, using observation/structured interviews, an experiment, and a field survey, finds that, in the short run, teams with homogeneous national membership outperform and experience greater satisfaction than moderately or highly heterogeneous teams, but this effect does not persist over time. However, the effects of surface-level cultural diversity on team performance have been challenged. For instance, the authors of Horwitz and Horwitz 2007 meta-analyze thirty-five peer-reviewed articles both on global and nonglobal work team diversity and finds that a significant and positive relationship exists between task-related diversity and the quantity and quality of team performance, whereas biodemographic diversity (i.e., surface-level diversity) exhibits virtually no relationship with the quantity and quality of team performance. Likewise, the meta-analysis in Stahl, et al. 2010 (cited under Face-to-Face Global Team Outcomes: Performance) finds that, depending on study characteristics, cultural diversity leads to process losses through task conflict and decreased social integration, but to process gains through increased creativity and satisfaction. Kilduff, et al. 2000 establishes that among managers from fourteen western European countries, no evidence exists for the effect of demographic diversity (national culture) on cognitive diversity. To better understand the mixed effects of national/cultural diversity, several scholars have performed studies on deep-level subfactors (information, values, and competencies). For example, Salk and Brannen 2000 concludes that “who” one goes to for resolving work-related problems plays an important role in influencing the effectiveness of multinational management team members. With few exceptions, a majority of research on values has been performed using the cultural values framework of Hofstede 2001. For instance, Kirkman and Shapiro 2001 finds that employees are generally more receptive to the teamwork aspect of self-managing work teams when they value collective interest more than individual interests, whereas employees are generally more receptive to the self-management aspect of self-managing work teams when they value equality in organizations more than status and power differences, value work activities more than non-work activities, and believe they (rather than external forces) control their personal and organizational outcomes. Moreover, Earley 1989 indicates that, among of sample of American and Chinese participants, the collectivist thinking of Chinese participants mitigates the effects of social loafing. Last, Chiu and Staples 2013 finds that team self-disclosure via weblogs and task elaboration can repair damage caused by fault-lines.

  • Chiu, Yi-Te, and D. Sandy Staples. “Reducing Faultlines in Geographically Dispersed Teams: Self-Disclosure and Task Elaboration.” Small Group Research 44.5 (2013): 498–531.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496413489735Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    An experimental study of forty four-persons, geographically distributed student teams finds that perceived fault-lines heighten conflict and impair decision process quality, and that self-disclosure via weblogs and task elaboration can repair damage caused by fault-lines.

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  • Earley, P. Christopher. “Social Loafing and Collectivism: A Comparison of the United States and the People’s Republic of China.” Administrative Science Quarterly 34.4 (1989): 565–581.

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    Using an experimental method among a sample of American and Chinese participants, the author found that collectivist thinking mitigates the effects of social loafing.

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  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Elaine M. Mosakowski. “Creating Hybrid Team Cultures: An Empirical Test of International Team Functioning.” Academy of Management Journal 43.1 (2000): 26–49.

    DOI: 10.2307/1556384Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Cultural composition has an impact on transnational team functioning. A curvilinear relationship exists between differences in nationality (team heterogeneity) and team performance. In the short run, teams that are homogeneous in member nationality will outperform and experience greater satisfaction than moderately or highly heterogeneous teams, but this effect did not persist over time because they avoid subgroup fractionalization and fault-lines.

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  • Elron, Efrat. “Top Management Teams within Multinational Corporations: Effects of Cultural Heterogeneity.” Leadership Quarterly 8.4 (1997): 393–412.

    DOI: 10.1016/S1048-9843(97)90021-7Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Author assigned country scores to TMT members to assess cultural heterogeneity in 121 subsidiaries in thirty-four countries. TMT cultural heterogeneity was positively related to TMT performance and conflict; however, conflict was negatively related to TMT performance.

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  • Hofstede, Geert H. Culture’s Consequences: Comparing Values, Behaviors, Institutions, and Organizations across Nations. 2d ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2001.

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    Among other things, a cultural-values framework is introduced encompassing six dimensions: individualism (individualistic societies emphasize personal achievements and individual rights), uncertainty avoidance index (a society’s tolerance for uncertainty and ambiguity), masculinity (masculine cultures value competitiveness, materialism, and power), Confucian dynamism (long-term-oriented societies), and indulgence (the degree to which hedonistic behaviors are culturally allowed).

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  • Horwitz, Sujin K., and Irwin B. Horwitz. “The Effects of Team Diversity on Team Outcomes: A Meta-analytic Review of Team Demography.” Journal of Management 33.6 (2007): 987–1015.

    DOI: 10.1177/0149206307308587Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors meta-analyzed thirty-five peer-reviewed articles both on global and on nonglobal work team diversity (published between 1985 and 2006) and found that a positive relationship exists between task-related diversity and the quantity and quality of team performance, whereas biodemographic diversity exhibited virtually no relationship with the quantity and quality of team performance.

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  • Kilduff, Martin, Reinhard Angelman, and Ajay Merha. “Top Management-Team Diversity and Firm Performance: Examining the Role of Cognitions.” Organization Science 11.1 (2000): 21–34.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.11.1.21.12569Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on managers from fourteen countries (including France, Germany, and Switzerland), authors found that no evidence exists for the effect of demographic diversity (national culture) on measures of cognitive diversity.

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., John L. Cordery, John Mathieu, Benson Rosen, and Michael Kukenberger. “Global Organizational Communities of Practice: The Effects of Nationality Diversity, Psychological Safety, and Media Richness on Community Performance.” Human Relations 66.3 (2013): 333–362.

    DOI: 10.1177/0018726712464076Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    In a sample of thirty global organizational communities of practice (OCoPs) (over two hundred members) in a Fortune 100 US-based firm, authors found that nationality diversity was curvilinearly (U-shaped) related to community performance and that this relationship is moderated (i.e., more positive at higher levels, and less negative at the lower levels) by psychological safety and the extent of rich communication media use.

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., and Debra L. Shapiro. “The Impact of Cultural Values on Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment in Self-Managing Work Teams: The Mediating Role of Employee Resistance.” Academy of Management Journal 44.3 (2001): 557–569.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069370Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that the type of employee resistance determines the amount of mediation (partial or full), depending on the cultural value (collectivism, power distance, and doing orientation).

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  • Nielsen, Bo Bernhard, and Sabina Nielsen. “Top Management Team Nationality Diversity and Firm Performance: A Multilevel Study.” Strategic Management Journal 34.3 (2013): 373–382.

    DOI: 10.1002/smj.2021Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors find that nationality diversity is positively related to performance and that this effect is stronger in (1) longer-tenured teams, (2) highly internationalized firms, and (3) munificent environments.

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  • Salk, Jane E., and Mary Yoko Brannen. “National Culture, Networks, and Individual Influence in a Multinational Management Team.” Academy of Management Journal 43.2 (2000): 191–202.

    DOI: 10.2307/1556376Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors use social network theory to find that one of the complex aspects of national culture, advice centrality (“Who do you go to for advice when you have a work-related problem or a decision you have to make?”), plays an important role in influencing a multinational management team member.

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Team and Team Leadership

Team-level input includes the subfactors of anonymity, leadership, task structure, team size, interdependence, role definition, task complexity, and team leadership. Most scholars have devoted their efforts to the subfactors of task complexity, task structure, and leadership. For example, Lane, et al. 2003 suggests that to effectively design and form a GT, leaders must address task, context, people, time, and technology complexity by properly structuring a team (i.e., clearly specifying an organizationally aligned task objective; making resources available; selecting team members with experience, skills, and abilities; and creating a sense of urgency). Furthermore, to address task complexity, Earley and Gibson 2002 composes a framework that includes the concepts of integration, differentiation, and equilibrium that link the processes between various levels of analysis. Additionally, to address task structure, Hambrick, et al. 1998 proposes a task structure continuum, with creative tasks having the least amount of difficulty, whereas computational task structures have moderate difficulty and coordinative task structures have the greatest difficulty for multinational groups. Concerning team leadership, most scholars agree that leaders play a crucial role in global teams. For example, Hill, et al. 2014, in a sample of 353 early-career professionals in different types of organizations, finds that degree of electronic communication strengthens that relationship and motivation relationship between leaders and their employees. On a sample of five pharmaceutical and medical-products organizations in four geographic areas (United States, Latin America, Southeast Asia, and western Europe), Gibson, et al. 2009 determines that greater perceptual differences between leader and team are associated with decreases in goal accomplishment, constructive conflict, and decision-making autonomy, with the strongest effect when a team’s perceptions are more positive than the leader’s perceptions are. Kearney and Gebert 2009 finds that both nationality and educational diversity are positively related to team performance when transformational leadership is high. Jung and Avolio 1999 establishes that performance is higher in groups than with individuals working alone: collectivists with a transformational leader generated more ideas, individualists (Caucasians) generated more ideas with a transactional leader, and, contrary to expectations, collectivists (Asians) generated more ideas that required fundamental organizational changes when working alone. Kirkman, et al. 2009 finds that power distance orientation moderates the relationship between group-level perceptions of transformational leadership and procedural justice, such that the relationship is more positive when power distance orientation is lower than when it is higher. Last, Erez and Somech 1996 discovers that higher levels of performance were achieved when an organizational leader employed a group goal or incentive among culturally diverse group members.

  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Cristina B. Gibson. Multinational Work Teams: A New Perspective. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 2002.

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    Authors propose a comprehensive framework on multinational teams that includes individual-level features of team members (inputs) and organizational context and team interaction (processes). Central to their framework are the concepts of integration, differentiation, and equilibrium, which serve to link the processes between various levels of analysis.

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  • Erez, Miriam, and Amit Somech. “Is Group Productivity Loss the Rule or the Exception? Effects of Culture and Group-Based Motivation.” Academy of Management Journal 39.6 (1996): 1513–1537.

    DOI: 10.2307/257067Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    In two subgroups, kibbutzim and urban, authors found that the kibbutzim versus urban split moderated the relationship between type of goal (individual versus group) and incentive (individual versus group) and group performance such that performance loss was less likely in kibbutzim than in urban groups. The highest performance level was in kibbutzim groups with a group goal and group incentive.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., Cary L. Cooper, and Jay A. Conger. “Do You See What I See? The Complex Effects of Perceptual Distance between Leaders and Teams.” Journal of Applied Psychology 94.1 (2009): 62–76.

    DOI: 10.1037/a0013073Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors highlight the lasting effects that perceptions can have on team performance, highlighting the importance of developing awareness of perceptions in order to increase effectiveness. In so doing, the authors develop the concept of leader-team perceptual distance. Furthermore, the authors found that perceptual distance between a leader and teams has a nonlinear relationship with team performance.

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  • Hambrick, Donald C., Sue Canney Davison, Scott A. Snell, and Charles C. Snow. “When Groups Consist of Multiple Nationalities: Towards a New Understanding of the Implications.” Organization Studies 19.2 (1998): 181–205.

    DOI: 10.1177/017084069801900202Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors theorize that the effects of diversity in a multinational group depend on whether the group’s task is primarily creative (most-promising setting), computational, or coordinative (having the greatest difficulties).

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  • Hill, N. Sharon, Jae Hyeung Kang, and Myeong-Gu Seo. “The Interactive Effect of Leader–Member Exchange and Electronic Communication on Employee Psychological Empowerment and Work Outcomes.” Leadership Quarterly 25.4 (2014): 772–783.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.leaqua.2014.04.006Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    On the basis of a sample of 353 early-career professionals employed in a range of different types of organizations, the authors found that employees’ degree of electronic communication strengthens that relationship and motivation relationship between leaders and their employees, which, in turn, affect several outcomes.

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  • Jung, Dong I., and Bruce J. Avolio. “Effects of Leadership Style and Followers’ Cultural Orientation on Performance in Group and Individual Task Conditions.” Academy of Management Journal 42.2 (1999): 208–218.

    DOI: 10.2307/257093Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that collectivists with a transformational leader generated more ideas, but individualists (Caucasians) generated more ideas with a transactional leader, group performance was higher than that of individuals working alone, and, contrary to expectations, collectivists (Asians) generated more ideas that required fundamental organizational changes when working alone.

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  • Kearney, Eric, and Diether Gebert. “Managing Diversity and Enhancing Team Outcomes: The Promise of Transformational Leadership.” Journal of Applied Psychology 94.1 (2009): 77–89.

    DOI: 10.1037/a0013077Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using a sample of sixty-three research-and-development teams in a large German pharmaceutical organization, authors found that both nationality and educational diversity were positively related to team performance in instances in which transformational leadership was high (versus low).

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., Gilad Chen, Jing-Lih Farh, and Kevin B. Lowe. “Individual Power Distance Orientation and Follower Reactions to Transformational Leaders: A Cross-Level, Cross-Cultural Examination.” Academy of Management Journal 52.4 (2009): 744–764.

    DOI: 10.5465/AMJ.2009.43669971Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    On a sample of 560 followers and 174 leaders located in China and the United States, the authors found that power distance moderated the group-level perceptions of transformational leadership–procedural justice relationship, that this was positively related to procedural justice, and that procedural justice had both direct and interactive effects on citizenship behaviors.

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  • Lane, Henry W., Martha L. Maznevski, Mark E. Mendenhall, and Jeanne McNett. “Designing and Forming Effective Global Teams.” In The Blackwell Handbook of Global Management: A Guide to Managing Complexity. Edited by Henry W. Lane, 199–226. Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2003.

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    Authors state that GTs are created to develop global strategies, to execute global strategies, or both. When forming a team, a leader plays a crucial role in designing task processes that include establishing a team vision, mission, and objectives; determining roles, responsibilities, and interaction norms; selecting and adopting the right technology; and finally creating a sense of community.

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Organizational Factors

Scholars have also examined the organizational subfactor inputs of context, cultural and organizational boundaries, and geographic dispersion. A study of organizational context, Riordan 2000, found that organizational context moderated the relationship between group diversity and the experiences of group members. A theoretical study that highlights the complexity of context, Gibson, et al. 2007 proposes a framework on the contextual antecedents (national-cultural heterogeneity, firm-level global integration, and environmental volatility), consequences (innovativeness of knowledge created, speed of knowledge creation, and speed of knowledge transfer between teams), and moderators (process conflict moderates the relationship between time perspective differences and innovativeness of knowledge created; task interdependence, GT training, and transfer of members moderate the relationship between time perspective differences and speed of knowledge creation; and knowledge management systems, boundary spanning, and empowerment strategies moderate the relationship between time perspective differences and speed of knowledge transfer between teams). Likewise, Chen, et al. 1998 takes a contextual approach to theorize that different situational conditions lead to cooperation in individualistic and collectivistic cultures. In individualistic cultures, instrumental factors such as high goal interdependence, enhancement of personal identity, and cognitive-based trust foster cooperation, whereas in collectivistic cultures, socio-emotional factors such as goal sharing, enhancement of group identity, and affect-based trust foster cooperation. Concerning cultural and organizational boundaries, a book on leading effective multinational teams, Davison and Ward 1999, suggests that the cultural and organizational boundaries of organizational structures (e.g., forging alliances and partnerships), spatial independence, and flexibility influence effective transnational organizational teams. Scholars have also examined the organizational-level input of geographic dispersion. Baba, et al. 2004 uses the observation method (physical, virtual, and from written documents) on a sample consisting of one multinational corporation with twenty team members in seven countries and six national identities, finding that globally distributed teaming is an effective organizational structure for GT performance and knowledge sharing, especially when team members develop a shared cognition. Finally, another study on geographic dispersion, Gong 2003, theorizes that when geographic distance separates reporting lines (i.e., a subsidiary and parent company), national heterogeneity between the two groups decreases trust and leads to reliance on more-formal control mechanisms. Moreover, Yaping Gong found that even when collocated, members’ differing values and actions may create at least the perception that additional monitoring (control) is necessary.

  • Baba, Marietta L., Julia C. Gluesing, Hilary Horn Ratner, and Kimberly Harris Wagner. “The Contexts of Knowing: Natural History of a Globally Distributed Team.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 25.5 (2004): 547–587.

    DOI: 10.1002/job.259Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Globally distributed teaming is an effective organizational structure for knowledge sharing, especially when team members develop a shared cognition by suspending one’s own judgment to learn the cultural logic and rationality of others’ divergent beliefs and values, while also allowing others to call into question one’s own divergent beliefs and values as to learn.

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  • Chen, Chao C., James R. Meindl, and Harry Hui. “Deciding on Equity or Parity: A Test of Situational, Cultural, and Individual Factors.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 19.2 (1998): 115–129.

    DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1379(199803)19:2%3C115::AID-JOB867%3E3.0.CO;2-JSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Researchers found that in individualistic cultures, instrumental factors such as high goal interdependence, enhancement of personal identity, and cognitive-based trust foster cooperation, whereas in collectivistic cultures, socio-emotional factors such as goal sharing, enhancement of group identity, and affect-based trust foster cooperation.

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  • Davison, Sue Canney, and Karen Ward. Leading International Teams. London: McGraw-Hill International, 1999.

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    Authors assert that designing an effective transnational organization depends on the effective deployment of technologies (advanced information), structures (e.g., forging alliances and partnerships), spatial independence, and flexibility.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., Mary J. Waller, Mason A. Carpenter, and Jeffrey M. Conte. “Antecedents, Consequences, and Moderators of Time Perspective Heterogeneity for Knowledge Management in MNO Teams.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 28.8 (2007): 1005–1034.

    DOI: 10.1002/job.445Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors propose a framework on the antecedents (national-cultural heterogeneity, firm-level global integration, and environmental volatility) to time perspective differences in GTs that can affect (1) innovativeness of knowledge, (2) speed of knowledge creation, and (3) speed of knowledge transfer between teams. They theorize that process conflict moderates the relationship between time perspective differences and innovativeness of knowledge created.

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  • Gong, Yaping. “Toward a Dynamic Process Model of Staffing Composition and Subsidiary Outcomes in Multinational Enterprises.” Journal of Management 29.2 (2003): 259–280.

    DOI: 10.1177/014920630302900207Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    This article develops a dynamic process model in which heterogeneity of staffing composition influences affective, behavioral, cognitive, and strategic outcomes, which in turn affect subsidiary financial performance.

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  • Riordan, Christine M. “Relational Demography within Groups: Past Developments, Contradictions, and New Directions.” In Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management. Edited by Gerald R. Ferris, 131–173. Bingley, UK: Emerald Group, 2000.

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    Author found that the effects of organizational context on the relationship between group diversity and the experiences of group members explain the inconsistent findings of prior research on the effects of demographic diversity.

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Face-to-Face Global Team Emergent States

Like the sections Face-to-Face Global Team Processes, Face-to-Face Global Team Outcomes, and Face-to-Face Global Team Inputs, this section is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework but is focused on the emergent states, the “E” of the IEPO framework. Emergent states include Individual and Team factors.

Individual

Individual-level team emergent state factors include five subfactors: confidence, empowerment, trust, psychological safety, and resistance. A book on multinational teams, Shapiro, et al. 2005 advances six individual-level emergent state propositions for increasing cohesion, trust, and support. In agreement with this line of thought, several empirical studies have been conducted on individual-level emergent states. For example, relating to confidence, Eby and Dobbins 1997, in a sample of 148 upper-level management students, finds that collectivism predicts self-efficacy for teamwork and moderates the impact of group goals and group efficacy on performance over time. In another study, in a sample of 228 American, Chinese, and Czech managers, Earley, et al. 1999 indicates that personal feedback influences self-efficacy beliefs in individualistic cultures, while group feedback influences self-efficacy beliefs in collectivistic cultures. In regard to trust, Yuki, et al. 2005 finds that in Japan, an important basis for trust is sharing indirect personal ties with other group members, whereas in the United States, having a strong identification based on an in-group or being from the same school (i.e., shared category membership) is a basis of trust. Costigan, et al. 2006 discovers that among a sample of US, Turkish, Polish, and Russian employees, both affect- and cognition-based trust have a significant, but modest, effect on an employee’s enterprising behavior. For psychological safety, Pelled, et al. 1999, in a sample of cross-functional, project-oriented (i.e., lengthy but time-limited projects) work teams, finds that work group racial diversity is positively related to emotional conflict. Understanding employee resistance is also important. In a series of studies (one theoretical and the other empirical), Kirkman and Shapiro 1997 outlines fourteen theoretical propositions on why employees resist a self-managing work team–related change. In general, the authors suggest that employee values of individualism are related to resistance in self-managing work teams, whereas employee values of high power distance, being-orientation, and determinism are related to resistance to the self-management aspect of teams. The same authors found in an empirical study that, among a sample of multinational organizations with affiliates in Belgium, Finland, the United States, and the Philippines, employee resistance to teams and self-management accounted for some or, in a few cases, all of the variance between cultural values and organizational satisfaction and commitment, and that the effects of employee resistance varied by country.

  • Costigan, Robert D., Richard C. Insinga, J. Jason Berman, and Selim S. Ilter. “The Effect of Employee Trust of the Supervisor on Enterprising Behavior: A Cross-Cultural Comparison.” Journal of Business and Psychology 21.2 (2006): 273–291.

    DOI: 10.1007/s10869-006-9029-2Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on a sample of 130 US, 202 Turkish, 101 Polish, and 86 Russian employees and their corresponding 519 supervisors, the authors found that both affect- and cognition-based trust have a significant, but modest, effect on an employee’s enterprising behavior. Furthermore, the authors found that both power distance and in-group collectivism do not moderate the relationship.

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  • Earley, P. Christopher, Cristina B. Gibson, and Chao C. Chen. “‘How Did I Do?’ versus ‘How Did We Do?’ Cultural Contrasts of Performance Feedback Use and Self-Efficacy.” Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology 30.5 (1999): 594–619.

    DOI: 10.1177/0022022199030005003Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of ninety-two American, sixty-six mainland Chinese, and seventy Czech managers, the authors found that personal feedback influenced self-efficacy beliefs in individualistic cultures, whereas group feedback also influenced self-efficacy beliefs in collectivistic cultures.

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  • Eby, Lillian T., and Gregory H. Dobbins. “Collectivistic Orientation in Teams: An Individual and Group-Level Analysis.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 18.3 (1997): 275–295.

    DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1379(199705)18:3%3C275::AID-JOB796%3E3.0.CO;2-CSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using a longitudinal survey method on a sample of 148 upper-level management students, the authors found that collectivism predicts self-efficacy for teamwork and moderates the impact of group goals and group efficacy on performance.

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., and Debra L. Shapiro “The Impact of Cultural Values on Employee Resistance to Teams: Toward a Model of Globalized Self-Managing Work Team Effectiveness.” Academy of Management Review 22.3 (1997): 730–757.

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    Using Geert Hofstede’s cultural values framework, the authors theorize that cultural values affect employee resistance to teams (i.e., self-managing work teams). They propose fourteen theoretical propositions that cause employees to resist self-managing work teams.

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., and Debra L. Shapiro. “The Impact of Cultural Values on Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment in Self-Managing Work Teams: The Mediating Role of Employee Resistance.” Academy of Management Journal 44.3 (2001): 557–569.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069370Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using a field study of 461 self-managing work teams (SMWT) in two multinationals, the authors found that employee resistance (to self-management or teams) accounted for some or, in a few cases, all of the variance between cultural values and both organizational satisfaction and commitment.

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  • Pelled, Lisa Hope, Kathleen M. Eisenhardt, and Katherine R. Xin. “Exploring the Black Box: An Analysis of Work Group Diversity, Conflict, and Performance.” Administrative Science Quarterly 44.1 (1999): 1–28.

    DOI: 10.2307/2667029Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on a sample of forty-five work teams in cross-functional, project-oriented teams from electronics divisions of three major corporations, the authors found that racial diversity in work groups was positively related to emotional conflict of like individuals in a social category.

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  • Shapiro, Debra L., Mary Ann Von Glinow, and Joseph L. C. Cheng. “Turning the Tides in Multinational Teams.” In Managing Multinational Teams: Global Perspectives. Edited by Debra L. Shapiro, Mary Ann von Glinow, and Joseph L. C. Cheng, 69–95. Amsterdam: Elsevier JAI, 2005.

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    Authors advance twelve propositions for increasing cohesion and commitment, trust and support, and creativity and innovation in multinational teams. They suggest that social categorization to a common group, moderate national subgroups (same national identity), and a balance of self and team identity lead to greater cross-national inclusion, and all lead to an increase in cohesion and commitment.

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  • Yuki, Masaki, William W. Maddux, Marilynn B. Brewer, and Kosuke Takemura. “Cross-Cultural Differences in Relationship- and Group-Based Trust.” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 31.1 (2005): 48–62.

    DOI: 10.1177/0146167204271305Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that trust is developed through different relational bases across cultures. In Japan, an important basis for trust is sharing indirect personal ties with other group members, whereas in the United States, an important basis for trust is having a strong identification based on an in-group or being from the same school (i.e., shared category membership).

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Team

Much work has been done on team-level emergent state factors, which include four subfactors: confidence (team efficacy), empowerment, climate, and collective cognition. Regarding confidence or team efficacy, results show that group efficacy is determined by status, task, and cultural context. For example, Gibson 1999 finds that the usual positive relationships between efficacy-related cognitions and performance are less consistent at the group level than at the individual level, with the impact of group-level cognitions being moderated by characteristics of the task and cultural context. Within the subfactor of empowerment, a common thread among the studies is that cultural values and team empowerment (or empowerment practices) are linked. For example, Kirkman and Shapiro 2001 (cited under Face-to-Face Global Team Processes: Problem Solving) determines that teams higher, rather than lower, in collectivism and doing-orientation are more empowered, and that these relationships are fully mediated by the level of team resistance to the team-related aspect of self-management. Concerning the effects of team-level empowerment practices on various outcomes, in a sample of American, Mexican, Polish, and Indian team members, Robert, et al. 2000 finds that the relationship between empowerment and satisfaction differed across levels of power distance, such that empowerment was negatively associated with satisfaction in high power distance samples. Regarding the subfactor of team climate, Chen, et al. 1998 indicates that cultures high on power distance and hierarchy prefer equity, whereas cultures low on power distance and with egalitarian values prefer equality. Regarding collective or shared cognition, Earley and Gibson 2002 states that shared cognition includes metaphors and schemas that help organize information, perspectives, the standards held for success, or the extent to which teams think similarly over time. Gibson and Zellmer-Braun 2001 finds that specific relationships between national cultural values and categories of metaphor lead to divergent patterns of expectations about team roles, scope, membership, and objectives. In addition to metaphors, Ely and Thomas 2001 examines how perspectives of diversity influence work group process, finding that work groups with an integration-and-learning perspective have the highest work group functioning. Also, Mohrman 1998 asserts that developing a shared context enhances the performance of globally dispersed teams. Finally, Dahlin, et al. 2005 finds that national diversity has a curvilinear relationship with three aspects of the collective cognition process—range, depth, and integration of information use—contradicting earlier assertions that moderate levels of national diversity interfere with information use.

  • Chen, Ya-Ru, Joel Brockner, and Tal Katz. “Toward an Explanation of Cultural Differences in In-Group Favoritism: The Role of Individual versus Collective Primacy.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 75.6 (1998): 1490–1502.

    DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.75.6.1490Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that cultures high on power distance and hierarchy preferred equity, whereas cultures low on power distance and with egalitarian values preferred equality. Americans had particularly negative attitudes toward teams when they performed well individually but their teams performed poorly, whereas Chinese demonstrated more in-group favoritism in these conditions.

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  • Dahlin, Kristina B., Laurie R. Weingart, and Pamela J. Hinds. “Team Diversity and Information Use.” Academy of Management Journal 48.6 (2005): 1107–1123.

    DOI: 10.5465/AMJ.2005.19573112Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    In a sample of one hundred MBA students from twenty-three different countries, the authors found that national diversity had a curvilinear relationship with three aspects of the collective cognition process: range, depth, and integration of information use. This finding (moderate nationality diversity stimulated depth and integration) contradicts those in Earley and Mosakowski 2000 (cited under Face-to-Face Global Team Outcomes: Attitudinal), that moderate levels of national diversity interfered with information use.

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  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Cristina B. Gibson. Multinational Work Teams: A New Perspective. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 2002.

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    Among other things, authors identify shared cognition (e.g., metaphors and schemas), a process mechanism that enables members to assess the degree to which they think similarly over time or to organize standards for success, information, and perspectives.

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  • Ely, Robin J., and David A. Thomas. “Cultural Diversity at Work: The Effects of Diversity Perspectives on Work Group Processes and Outcomes.” Administrative Science Quarterly 46.2 (2001): 229–273.

    DOI: 10.2307/2667087Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Work group processes are affected by the perspective of diversity held by the culturally diverse work group, with work groups with an integration-and-learning perspective having the highest group functioning. The relationship between the perspective held and work group processes is mediated by quality of work group relations, feeling valued and respected, and the significance of one’s own racial identity.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B. “Do They Do What They Believe They Can? Group-Efficacy and Group Effectiveness across Tasks and Cultures.” Academy of Management Journal 42.2 (1999): 138–152.

    DOI: 10.2307/257089Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using simulation and field study methods, the author found that when task uncertainty was high (low information exchange), team members worked independently, and collectivism was low and group-efficacy was not related to group effectiveness. In contrast, when task uncertainty was high (high information exchange), team members worked interdependently and valued collectivism, and the relationship between group-efficacy and group effectiveness was positive.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., and Mary E. Zellmer-Braun. “Metaphors and Meaning: An Intercultural Analysis of the Concept of Teamwork.” Administrative Science Quarterly 46.2 (2001): 274–303.

    DOI: 10.2307/2667088Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Demonstrates that people around the globe hold different definitions of teamwork, as indicated by the metaphors they use when they talk about their teams. Specifically, their analyses found that specific relationships between national cultural values and categories of metaphor (military, sports, community, family, and associates) led to divergent patterns of expectations about team roles, scope, membership, and objectives.

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  • Mohrman, Susan A. “The Context for Geographically Dispersed Teams and Networks.” In Trends in Organizational Behavior. Vol. 5. Edited by Denise M. Rousseau and Cary L. Cooper, 63–80. Chichester, UK: Wiley, 1998.

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    In this chapter, the author provides an in-depth understanding of the issue of context and proposes that developing a shared context can enhance performance in globally dispersed teams.

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  • Robert, Christopher, Tahira M. Probst, Joseph J. Martocchio, Fritz Drasgow, and John J. Lawler. “Empowerment and Continuous Improvement in the United States, Mexico, Poland, and India: Predicting Fit on the Basis of the Dimensions of Power Distance and Individualism.” Journal of Applied Psychology 85.5 (2000): 643–658.

    DOI: 10.1037/0021-9010.85.5.643Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Among a sample of leaders in a firm with operations in the United States, Mexico, Poland, and India, the authors found that the relationship between empowerment and satisfaction differed across levels of power distance, such that empowerment was negatively associated with satisfaction in high power distance samples.

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Face-to-Face Global Team Processes

Like the sections Face-to-Face Global Team Outcomes, Face-to-Face Global Team Emergent States, and Face-to-Face Global Team Inputs, this section is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework but is focused on the processes or the “P” of the IEPO framework. As previously mentioned, processes include the factors of Face-to-Face Global Team Processes: Coordination, Face-to-Face Global Team Processes: Communication, Face-to-Face Global Team Processes: Problem Solving, and Face-to-Face Global Team Processes: Conflict Management. The coordination factor has a temporal subfactor.

Coordination

Edward Hall (Hall 1959) first conceptualized a distinction of time between cultures. Specifically, he asserted that a distinction exists between monochronic (M-time) and polychronic (P-time) views. Those from M-time cultures tend to focus on conducting one activity at a time; they follow a critical path in reaching milestones such as timelines and key deliverables. Furthermore, he contended that M-timers might diminish the efforts of their P-time colleagues, who favor taking on parallel activities with less regard for finalizing one project before tackling the next. This misunderstanding may lead M-time leaders (especially those from cultures with higher power distance) to believe they need to exercise stricter control over the processes and outcomes of their teams. Since his assertions, the temporal aspects of coordination have been the focus of some scholars’ attention. For example, Harrison, et al. 1998 and Harrison, et al. 2002 report on some interesting results on the temporal aspects of coordination. David Harrison and his colleagues found that time neutralized (i.e., made less important) the effects of surface-level diversity (in age, sex, and race/ethnicity) on group cohesiveness, and it enhanced (made more important) the effects of deep-level (attitudes, beliefs, and values) diversity. However, most theory and research cites the negative processes that occur in teams that have multicultural team members. For instance, Shapiro, et al. 2002 asserts that cultural differences, electronic communication, and lack of monitoring (characteristics of transnational teams) minimize the importance of team identity, leading to effort-withholding behaviors.

  • Hall, Edward T. The Silent Language. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1959.

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    Author conceptualized a monochronic (M-time) and polychronic (P-time) distinction between cultures. Those from M-time cultures focus on conducting one activity at a time and follow a critical path in reaching milestones. M-timers might devalue the efforts of their P-time colleagues, who favor “multitasking”—taking on parallel activities with less regard for finalizing one project before tackling the next.

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  • Harrison, David A., Kenneth H. Price, and Myrtle P. Bell. “Beyond Relational Demography: Time and the Effects of Surface- and Deep-Level Diversity on Work Group Cohesion.” Academy of Management Journal 41.1 (1998): 96–107.

    DOI: 10.2307/256901Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on two samples in the United States, authors found that time neutralized (made less important) the effects of surface-level diversity (in age, sex, and race/ethnicity) on group cohesiveness, and it enhanced (made more important) the effects of deep-level (attitudes, beliefs, and values) diversity.

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  • Harrison, David A., Kenneth H. Price, Joanne H. Gavin, and Anna T. Florey. “Time, Teams, and Task Performance: Changing Effects of Surface- and Deep-Level Diversity on Group Functioning.” Academy of Management Journal 45.5 (2002): 1029–1045.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069328Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors’ findings indicate that time serves as a coordination mechanism, in which team members are able to exchange personal and task-related information. Consequently, increasing collaboration weakens the effects of surface-level (demographic) diversity on team outcomes but strengthens those of deep-level (psychological) diversity.

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  • Shapiro, Debra L., Stacie A. Furst, Gretchen M. Spreitzer, and Mary Ann Von Glinow. “Transnational Teams in the Electronic Age: Are Team Identity and High Performance at Risk?” In Special Issue: Brave New Workplace: Organizational Behavior in the Electronic Age. Journal of Organizational Behavior 23.4 (2002): 455–467.

    DOI: 10.1002/job.149Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors theorize that cultural differences (local demands and related identities facing employees), electronic communication, and lack of monitoring (characteristics of transnational teams) minimize the importance of team identity, leading to effort-withholding behaviors (e.g., loafing, shirking, and freeriding).

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Communication

Several studies have been conducted on the factor of communication. Dose and Klimoski 1999 finds that team members draw on “work values” (shared occupational or functional processes) to help develop expectations, communication, norms, and trust in order to promote cohesiveness and normative and informational influence within all types of teams. Also regarding communication, Gajendran and Joshi 2012 indicates that frequent leader-employee communication offsets losses in team dispersion and enhances decision making. Maznevski 1994 suggests that performance can be enhanced by incorporating diverse (different nationalities) team members’ ideas (integration) through effective communication consisting of communication behaviors and communication preconditions (e.g., motivation to communicate, ability to decenter). In addition, the leader plays a role. Ayoko, et al. 2002 finds that culturally heterogeneous teams perform as effectively as, or more effectively than, homogeneous teams when leaders help to prevent communication breakdowns. Similarly, in an empirical study using seventy-five European American students and fifty-one Japanese international students from a US community college, the author conducted an experiment and found that communication is impeded in heterogeneous groups through unequal distribution of turns at talk. Additionally, Oetzel 1998 determines that groups composed of members with varying levels of independent or interdependent self-construals (i.e., self-image) are more likely to have unequal distribution of turns than groups composed of members with similar levels of independent or interdependent self-construals. Von Glinow, et al. 2004 questions whether multicultural team members are able to communicate in certain circumstances. For instance, when multicultural team members are embroiled in emotional conflict, can they convey the meanings they intend when they speak with each other? In their theoretical study, the authors explain the issues with current communication methods. To offset deficiency and to increase communication, the authors suggest expressing emotion aesthetically or through the R-mode of communication (i.e., non-dialogue forms of verbal expression, such as music; events that are visually oriented, emotional, and “non-cerebral”; or events that are physically engaging and community service-oriented).

  • Ayoko, Oluremi B., Charmine E. J. Härtel, and Victor J. Callan. “Resolving the Puzzle of Productive and Destructive Conflict in Culturally Heterogeneous Workgroups: A Communication Accommodation Theory Approach.” International Journal of Conflict Management 13.2 (2002): 165–195.

    DOI: 10.1108/eb022873Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors conducted two studies using communication accommodation theory (CAT), which examines the attitudes, motives, and communication strategies that shape communicative interaction. They found that culturally heterogeneous teams performed as effectively as or more effectively than homogeneous teams when leaders helped prevent communication breakdowns.

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  • Dose, Jennifer J., and Richard J. Klimoski. “The Diversity of Diversity: Work Effects Values on Formative Team Processes.” Human Resource Management Review 9.1 (1999): 83–108.

    DOI: 10.1016/S1053-4822(99)00012-1Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors theorize that team members draw on “work values” (shared occupational or functional processes) to help develop expectations, communication, norms, and trust in order to promote cohesiveness and normative and informational influence.

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  • Gajendran, Ravi S., and Aparna Joshi. “Innovation in Globally Distributed Teams: The Role of LMX, Communication Frequency, and Member Influence on Team Decisions.” Journal of Applied Psychology 97.6 (2012): 1252–1261.

    DOI: 10.1037/a0028958Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using data from forty globally distributed teams, the authors found that that leader-member exchange (LMX) can enhance member influence on team decisions when it is sustained through frequent leader-member communication. This joint effect is strengthened as team dispersion increases.

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  • Maznevski, Martha L. “Understanding Our Differences: Performance in Decision-Making Groups with Diverse Members.” Human Relations 47.5 (1994): 531–552.

    DOI: 10.1177/001872679404700504Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Author theorizes that performance is improved by incorporating diverse (different nationalities) team members’ ideas (integration) by effective communication that consists of communication behaviors and communication preconditions (e.g., motivation to communicate, ability to decenter).

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  • Oetzel, John G. “Culturally Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Groups: Explaining Communication Processes through Individualism-Collectivism and Self-Construal.” International Journal of Intercultural Relations 22.2 (1998): 135–161.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0147-1767(98)00002-9Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Among other things, the author found that heterogeneous groups are more likely to have unequal distribution of turns at talk and to utilize majority decisions than are homogeneous groups. Accordingly, the author found that communication is impeded in heterogeneous groups.

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  • Von Glinow, Mary Ann, Debra L. Shapiro, and Jeanne M. Brett. “Can We Talk, and Should We? Managing Emotional Conflict in Multicultural Teams.” Academy of Management Review 29.4 (2004): 578–592.

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    Authors question whether multicultural team members embroiled in emotional conflict can convey the meanings they intend when they speak with each other. Through their sequential model, the authors explain the issues with current communication methods. To offset deficiency and to increase communication, the authors suggest expressing emotion aesthetically or utilizing the R-mode of communication.

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Problem Solving

In similar fashion, the factor of problem solving has produced some interesting results. For example, Oetzel 1998 finds that heterogeneous teams tend to utilize “majority” decisions more than homogeneous groups do; homogeneous Japanese groups have fewer conflicts, using more-cooperative conflict tactics and fewer competitive conflict tactics than homogeneous European American groups do. Moreover, groups composed of members with high independent (versus interdependent) self-construals (self-image) are more likely to use competitive tactics and less likely to use cooperative tactics than are groups composed of members with low independent self-construals. Kirkman and Shapiro 2001 indicates a similar result when using the field survey method on two samples: teams higher, rather than lower, in collectivism were also more cooperative. Phillips, et al. 2006 examines how surface-level diversity (based on race) and deep-level similarities influence three-person decision-making groups on a “hidden-profile” task, finding that surface-level (based on demographics) homogeneous groups perceive their information to be less exceptional and that they spend less time on the task than do surface-level diverse groups. Lam, et al. 2002 finds that perceptions of an opportunity for participative decision making have a negative effect on the performance of a group when the group is high on allocentrism and has low participation efficacy. Finally, the authors discovered that collective participation efficacy and perceptions of an opportunity for participative decision making have negative effects on the performance of an individual when the individual is high in idiocentrism and has low participation self-efficacy. These results seem to be confirmed in Ng and Van Dyne 2001, which shows that individuals who are high on horizontal individualism and low on horizontal collectivism have improved decision quality when they are exposed to a minority perspective. Similarly, influence targets with high vertical collectivism also demonstrate higher-quality decisions, but only when the influence agent holds a high-status position in the group.

  • Kirkman, Bradley L., and Debra L. Shapiro. “The Impact of Team Members’ Cultural Values on Productivity, Cooperation, and Empowerment in Self-Managing Work Teams.” Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology 32.5 (2001): 597–617.

    DOI: 10.1177/0022022101032005005Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors used the survey method on two samples, a Fortune 100 company with affiliates in Belgium, Finland, and the United States, and a Fortune 30 company with an affiliate in the Philippines, to find that teams higher, rather than lower, in collectivism were more cooperative.

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  • Lam, Simon S., Xiao-Ping Chen, and John Schaubroeck. “Decision Making and Employee Performance in Different Cultures: The Moderating Effects of Allocentrism/Idiocentrism and Efficacy.” Academy of Management Journal 45.4 (2002): 905–914.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069321Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Perceptions of an opportunity for participative decision making had a positive effect on the performance of a group when the group was high on allocentrism and had high participation efficacy. Perceptions of an opportunity for participative decision making had a negative effect on the performance of a group when the group was high on allocentrism and had low participation efficacy.

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  • Ng, K. Yee, and Linn Van Dyne. “Individualism-Collectivism as a Boundary Condition for Effectiveness of Minority Influence in Decision Making.” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 84.2 (2001): 198–225.

    DOI: 10.1006/obhd.2000.2927Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of 162 groups, authors found that decision quality improved for individuals exposed to a minority perspective, especially for individuals who were high on horizontal individualism and low on horizontal collectivism. Influence targets with high vertical collectivism also demonstrated higher-quality decisions, but only when the influence agent held a high-status position in the group.

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  • Oetzel, John G. “Culturally Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Groups: Explaining Communication Processes through Individualism-Collectivism and Self-Construal.” International Journal of Intercultural Relations 22.2 (1998): 135–161.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0147-1767(98)00002-9Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Among other things, the author found that groups composed of members with high independent (versus interdependent) self-construals (self-image) are more likely to use competitive tactics and less likely to use cooperative tactics than groups composed of members with low independent self-construals.

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  • Phillips, Katherine W., Gregory B. Northcraft, and Margaret A. Neale. “Surface-Level Diversity and Decision-Making in Groups: When Does Deep-Level Similarity Help?” Group Processes and Intergroup Relations 9.4 (2006): 467–482.

    DOI: 10.1177/1368430206067557Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of 216 undergraduate business students, the authors found that surface-level homogeneous groups perceived their information to be less exceptional and that they spent less time on the task than did surface-level diverse groups.

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Conflict Management

The final process factor is conflict management, which we describe in terms of culture heterogeneity and conflict; culture- and conflict-handling strategies; and conflict, cultural intelligence, and emotions. Elron 1997 finds that top management teams’ cultural heterogeneity is positively related to conflict and that conflict is negatively related to performance. A cause of such conflict was tested in Bochner and Hesketh 1994, finding that out-group respondents reported higher discrimination, regarded cultural diversity in the workplace favorably, and engaged in what host countries considered “counternormal,” all of which may be attributed to workplace conflict. Chen, et al. 2005 finds that when Chinese workers are exposed to the idea of a cooperative approach to conflict (versus an avoidance or competitive approach), they and their managers strengthen their relationship and improve their productivity. Kopelman and Rosette 2008 posits that in some cultures it may be inappropriate to show negative emotions when dealing with conflict. For example, Tinsley and Brett 2001 discovers a pattern in cross-cultural conflict management strategies in which Americans hold the conflict management norm of discussing parties’ interests and synthesizing multiple issues, whereas the Chinese are oriented toward prioritizing collective interest and having concern for authority. This assertion about the Chinese is bolstered in Friedman, et al. 2006, which found a higher Chinese tendency to avoid conflict, explained by higher Chinese expectations that direct conflict will hurt the relationship with the other party and by greater concern for the other party among Chinese. Also, Chinese were more sensitive to hierarchy than Americans, so the tendency to avoid conflict was heightened more for Chinese than for Americans when the other party was of higher status. On the basis of these studies, it would seem that conflict is a big issue, and that it should be mitigated and managed. Cramton and Hinds 2014 finds that certain team processes provoke tensions and these tensions are reduced through interdependence and embeddedness. One method, suggested in Earley and Erez 1997, is for managers to develop their cultural intelligence by understanding the impact of subordinates’ and coworkers’ cultural background. Another method to manage conflict is proposed in Von Glinow, et al. 2004 (cited under Face-to-Face Global Team Processes: Communication), especially in situations when multicultural team members are embroiled in emotional conflict. The authors’ solution rests on expressing emotions aesthetically or using the R-Mode of communication (non-dialogue forms of verbal expression, such as music; events that are visually oriented, emotional, and “non-cerebral”; or events that are physically engaging and community service oriented).

  • Bochner, Stephen, and Baryl Hesketh. “Power Distance, Individualism/Collectivism, and Job-Related Attitudes in a Culturally Diverse Work Group.” Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology 25.2 (1994): 233–257.

    DOI: 10.1177/0022022194252005Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Out-group respondents reported higher discrimination, regarded workplace cultural diversity favorably, and engaged in what host countries consider “counternormal” behaviors. Authors questioned the “almost total overlap” existing between the two “distinct” constructs of power distance and individualism/collectivism, within the context of a single, culturally diverse work system that comprises two sets of subgroups whose countries index on these dimensions.

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  • Chen, Yifeng, Dean Tjosvold, and Sofia Su Fang. “Working with Foreign Managers: Conflict Management for Effective Leader Relationships in China.” International Journal of Conflict Management 16.3 (2005): 265–286.

    DOI: 10.1108/eb022932Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that a cooperative approach to conflict, rather than a competitive or avoidance approach, helped Chinese employees and their managers strengthen their relationship and improve their productivity.

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  • Cramton, Catherine D., and Pamela J. Hinds. “An Embedded Model of Cultural Adaptation in Global Teams.” Organization Science 25.4 (2014): 1056–1081.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.2013.0885Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Inductive analysis of nine software development teams led to the development of this model describing important team process differences (i.e., interpersonal communication styles, preferred approaches to organizational control and authority relations, and work-related knowledge and problem-solving approaches). Embeddedness and interdependence were found to resolve tensions that arise from these processes.

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  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Miriam Erez. The Transplanted Executive. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.

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    Authors provide insight on how to manage multinational and multicultural organizations and teams more effectively, by highlighting business case studies and empirical research. Furthermore, the authors implicitly encourage managers to develop their own and their team members’ cultural intelligence (CQ) by understanding the impact of subordinates’ and coworkers’ cultural background.

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  • Elron, Efrat “Top Management Teams within Multinational Corporations: Effects of Cultural Heterogeneity.” Leadership Quarterly 8.4 (1997): 393–412.

    DOI: 10.1016/S1048-9843(97)90021-7Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Author assigned country scores to top management team (TMT) members to assess cultural heterogeneity in 121 subsidiaries in thirty-four countries. TMT cultural heterogeneity was positively related to TMT performance and conflict; however, conflict was negatively related to TMT performance.

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  • Friedman, Ray, Shu-Cheng Chi, and Leigh Anne Liu. “An Expectancy Model of Chinese American Differences in Conflict Avoiding.” Journal of International Business Studies 37.1 (2006): 76–91.

    DOI: 10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8400172Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    A higher Chinese tendency to avoid conflict is explained by higher Chinese expectations that direct conflict will hurt the relationship with the other party, as well as by greater concern for the other party among Chinese. In addition, Chinese participants were more sensitive to hierarchy than Americans, so status tended to heighten conflict avoidance.

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  • Kopelman, Shirli, and Ashleigh Shelby Rosette. “Cultural Variation in Response to Strategic Display of Emotions during Negotiations.” Group Decision and Negotiations 17.1 (2008): 65–77.

    DOI: 10.1007/s10726-007-9087-5Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The display of positive emotion is consistent with the manner in which many Asian negotiators communicate respect through humility and deference. Confirmed the major hypothesis that Asian negotiators who highly regard cultural values such as tradition and conformity would be more likely to accept an offer from an opposing party who displayed positive rather than negative emotion.

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  • Tinsley, Catherine H., and Jeanne M. Brett. “Managing Work Place Conflict in the United States and Hong Kong.” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 85.2 (2001): 360–381.

    DOI: 10.1006/obhd.2000.2944Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that Americans held conflict management norms for discussing parties’ interests and synthesizing multiple issues, whereas the Chinese were oriented toward prioritizing collective interest and having concern for authority.

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Face-To-Face Global Team Outcomes

Like the sections Face-to-Face Global Team Processes, Face-to-Face Global Team Emergent States, and Face-to-Face Global Team Inputs, this section is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework but is focused on the outputs or the “O” of the IEPO framework. Outputs include performance and attitudinal factors. The Performance factor consists of the subfactors of productivity or effectiveness, learning, innovation, and ideas. The Attitudinal factor encompasses commitment, satisfaction, team organizational citizenship behavior, and viability.

Performance

The first subfactor of performance is team effectiveness or productivity. Many of the studies cited elsewhere in this article exhibit a relationship among culture and team effectiveness, performance, or productivity. Among those cited in this subsection, Cox, et al. 1991 finds that cultural composition affects team effectiveness. Likewise, Thomas 1999 concludes that the cultural diversity of a group, the sociocultural norms of group members, and their relative cultural distance from each other influence work group effectiveness; furthermore, in that study culturally homogeneous groups had higher performance than did culturally heterogeneous groups on five group tasks. Salk and Brannen 2000 finds that one complex aspect of national culture alone does not predict effectiveness; rather, the researchers asserted that a latent dimension of national diversity—advice centrality—plays an important role in influencing the effectiveness of multinational management team members. Further unpacking the aspects of team cultural diversity, Gibson, et al. 2009 determines that greater perceptual differences between a leader and team are related to decreases in team performance. Similarly, Gibson 1999 finds that when task uncertainty is high (low information exchange), team members work independently, collectivism is low, and group efficacy is not related to group effectiveness; however, when task uncertainty is high (high information exchange), team members work interdependently, value collectivism, and the relationship between group efficacy and group effectiveness is positive. The second subfactor of performance is learning. A field study on a sample of teams of telecommunication employees who had recently completed projects in various regions of the globe, Cummings 2004 finds that external knowledge sharing is more strongly associated with performance when group members are dispersed across geographic locations; that is, learning increases when group members are scattered around the globe. The third subfactor is innovation or creativity. Goncalo and Staw 2006 theorizes that suspending national stereotype attribution, incorporating cross-national laterality, and emphasizing cross-national perspective taking lead to cross-national divergence of ideas, which, in turn, leads to an increase in creativity and innovation.

  • Cox, Taylor H., Sharon A. Lobel, and Poppy Lauretta McLeod. “Effects of Ethnic Group Cultural Differences on Cooperative and Competitive Behavior on a Group Task.” Academy of Management Journal 34.4 (1991): 827–847.

    DOI: 10.2307/256391Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors performed an experiment and found that cultural composition has an impact on cooperative behavior and team effectiveness.

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  • Cummings, Jonathon N. “Work Groups, Structural Diversity, and Knowledge Sharing in a Global Organization.” Management Science 50.3 (2004): 352–364.

    DOI: 10.1287/mnsc.1030.0134Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field study method on a sample of teams of telecommunication employees that recently completed projects in the United States–Canada, Latin America, Europe, Middle East–Africa, India-China, and Japan-Korea-Malaysia, the authors found that external knowledge sharing was more strongly associated with performance when group members were dispersed across geographic locations.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B. “Do They Do What They Believe They Can? Group Efficacy and Group Effectiveness across Tasks and Cultures.” Academy of Management Journal 42.2 (1999): 138–152.

    DOI: 10.2307/257089Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Author found that the usual positive relationships between efficacy-related cognitions and performance were less consistent at the group level than at the individual level, with the impact of group-level cognitions moderated by characteristics of the task and cultural context. Furthermore, when task uncertainty was high, team members worked independently, collectivism was low, and group efficacy was not related to group effectiveness.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., Cary L. Cooper, and Jay A. Conger. “Do You See What I See? The Complex Effects of Perceptual Distance between Leaders and Teams.” Journal of Applied Psychology 94.1 (2009): 62–76.

    DOI: 10.1037/a0013073Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors highlight the lasting effects that perceptions can have on team performance, highlighting the importance of developing awareness of perceptions in order to increase effectiveness. Furthermore, the authors found that greater perceptual differences are associated with decreases in team performance, with the effect being strongest when a team’s perceptions are more positive than the leader’s perceptions are (as opposed to the reverse).

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  • Goncalo, Jack A., and Barry M. Staw. “Individualism–Collectivism and Group Creativity.” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 100.1 (2006): 96–109.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.obhdp.2005.11.003Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of 204 diverse teams, the authors found that on a team level, individualistic groups were more creative than collectivistic groups, especially when given explicit instructions to be creative.

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  • Salk, Jane E., and Mary Yoko Brannen. “National Culture, Networks, and Individual Influence in a Multinational Management Team.” Academy of Management Journal 43.2 (2000): 191–202.

    DOI: 10.2307/1556376Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors used Social Network Theory to find that one of the complex aspects of national culture—advice centrality (i.e., “Who do you go to for advice when you have a work-related problem or a decision you have to make?”)—plays an important role in influencing a multinational management team member.

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  • Stahl, Günter K., Martha L. Maznevski, Andreas Voigt, and Karsten Jonsen. “Unraveling the Effects of Cultural Diversity in Teams: A Meta-analysis of Research on Multicultural Work Groups.” Journal of International Business Studies 41.4 (2010): 690–709.

    DOI: 10.1057/jibs.2009.85Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    A meta-analysis of 108 processes and performance studies in 10,632 teams revealed that cultural diversity leads to process losses through task conflict and decreased social integration, but to process gains through increased creativity and satisfaction; the effects of cultural diversity vary, depending on contextual influences, research design, and sample characteristics.

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  • Thomas, David C. “Cultural Diversity and Work Group Effectiveness: An Experimental Study.” Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology 30.2 (1999): 242–263.

    DOI: 10.1177/0022022199030002006Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The author found that cultural diversity of the group, the sociocultural norms of group members, and their relative cultural distance from each other influence work group effectiveness (i.e., substantive conflict, emotional conflict, cooperation, organizational citizenship, social impairment, cohesiveness, commitment to group, satisfaction with group, satisfaction with process, and trust).

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Attitudinal

The first subfactor of attitudinal outcomes is commitment. Culture has been both theoretically and empirically linked to commitment. Shapiro, et al. 2005 theorizes that social categorization to a common group, moderate national subgroups (i.e., of the same national identity), and a balance of self and team identity lead to greater cross-national inclusion, all of which increases effectiveness. Along the same lines, several empirical studies have been conducted. For example, using a sample of five European and Canadian affiliates of a US multinational firm, he authors of Palich, et al. 1995 find individualism and uncertainty avoidance to be negatively related to commitment, and masculinity to be positively related to commitment. In an effort to delve further into the effects of culture on commitment, many researchers have sought to identify constructs that moderate or mediate the relationship. Kirkman and Shapiro 2001 determines that employee behavior accounts for some or, in a few cases, all of the variance between cultural values and organizational satisfaction and commitment. The second subfactor of attitudinal outcomes is satisfaction. According to Jackson, et al. 1991 and Hui, et al. 1995, satisfaction has been found to be higher in similar groups. Earley and Mosakowski 2000 concludes, by using a mixed method (observation/structured interviews, an experiment, and field survey), that the effect of greater satisfaction does not persist over time in teams that have homogeneous national membership (versus heterogeneous teams). Finally, Robert, et al. 2000 finds that the relationship between empowerment and satisfaction differs across levels of power distance, such that empowerment is negatively associated with satisfaction in high-power-distance samples. Likewise, Lau and Murnighan 1998 examines the role of demographic “fault-lines” (hypothetical dividing lines that may split a group into subgroups on the basis of one or more attributes) and how these team members’ characteristics affect commitment to the team.

  • Earley, P. Christopher, and Elaine M. Mosakowski. “Creating Hybrid Team Cultures: An Empirical Test of International Team Functioning.” Academy of Management Journal 43.1 (2000): 26–49.

    DOI: 10.2307/1556384Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using three methods (observation/structured interviews, an experiment, and field survey), the authors determined that cultural composition has an impact on transnational team functioning. Specifically, in a series of three studies using qualitative and two laboratory methods, the authors found that a curvilinear relationship exists between differences in nationality (team heterogeneity) and team performance.

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  • Hui, C. Harry, Candice Yee, and Karen L. Eastman. “The Relationship between Individualism-Collectivism and Job Satisfaction.” Applied Psychology 44.3 (1995): 276–282.

    DOI: 10.1111/j.1464-0597.1995.tb01080.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    In a series of three studies, the authors found a positive relationship between collectivism (the tendency to value group welfare more than one’s own) and job satisfaction.

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  • Jackson, Susan E., Joan F. Brett, Valerie I. Sessa, Dawn M. Cooper, Johan A. Julin, and Karl Peyronnin. “Some Differences Make a Difference: Individual Dissimilarity and Group Heterogeneity as Correlates of Recruitment, Promotions, and Turnover.” Journal of Applied Psychology 76.5 (1991): 675–689.

    DOI: 10.1037/0021-9010.76.5.675Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that demographically similar groups tend to exhibit higher satisfaction, and lower absenteeism and turnover.

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  • Kirkman, Bradley L., and Debra L. Shapiro. “The Impact of Cultural Values on Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment in Self-Managing Work Teams: The Mediating Role of Employee Resistance.” Academy of Management Journal 44.3 (2001): 557–569.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069370Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field study method in two multinational organizations (one with affiliates in Belgium, Finland, and the United States, and one with affiliates in the Philippines), the authors found that the type of employee resistance determines the amount of mediation (partial or full) depending on which type of cultural value is considered (collectivism, power distance, and a doing orientation).

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  • Lau, Dora C., and Keith J. Murnighan. “Demographic Diversity and Faultlines: The Compositional Dynamics of Organizational Groups.” Academy of Management Review 23.2 (1998): 325–340.

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    Authors suggest that demographic “fault-lines” underlie how team members’ characteristics affect functioning. These subgroup identities provide psychological attachment and commitment to the team on role expectations of team functioning. Furthermore, the authors assert that task characteristics moderate the display and functioning of fault-lines to overstate or mitigate subgroup formation.

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  • Palich, Leslie E., Peter W. Horn, and Rodger W. Griffeth. “Managing in the International Context: Testing Cultural Generality of Sources of Commitment to Multinational Enterprises.” Journal of Management 21.4 (1995): 671–690.

    DOI: 10.1177/014920639502100405Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Individualism (the tendency to promote one’s own interests over the interests of one’s groups or society) and uncertainty avoidance (the extent to which a society feels threatened by uncertain and ambiguous situations) are negatively related to commitment and masculinity (the extent to which the dominant values in society are assertiveness and materialism) and positively related to commitment.

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  • Robert, Christopher, Tahira M. Probst, Joseph J. Martocchio, Fritz Drasgow, and John J. Lawler. “Empowerment and Continuous Improvement in the United States, Mexico, Poland, and India: Predicting Fit on the Basis of the Dimensions of Power Distance and Individualism.” Journal of Applied Psychology 85.5 (2000): 643–658.

    DOI: 10.1037/0021-9010.85.5.643Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Among a sample of leaders in a firm with operations in the United States, Mexico, Poland, and India, the authors found that the relationship between empowerment and satisfaction differed across levels of power distance, such that empowerment was negatively associated with satisfaction in high-power-distance samples.

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  • Shapiro, Debra L., Mary Ann Von Glinow, and Joseph L. C. Cheng. “Turning the Tides in Multinational Teams.” In Managing Multinational Teams: Global Perspectives. Edited by Debra L. Shapiro, Mary Ann Von Glinow, and Joseph L. C. Cheng, 69–95. Bingley, UK: Emerald Group, 2005.

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    Authors advance twelve propositions for increasing cohesion and commitment, trust and support, and creativity and innovation in multinational teams.

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Global Virtual Team Inputs

This section is focused on the “I” of the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework. Inputs include individual-level, team-level, and organizational-level factors.

Individual

Inputs include individual, team, and organizational factors, and each factor is composed of subfactors. Individual-level team input factors include two subfactors: surface-level characteristics (national/cultural origin and gender) and deep-level characteristics (personality, attitudes, opinions, cognitions, competencies, information, and values), which become known only over time through verbal and nonverbal communication. Many researchers have performed studies on the effects of gender and national/cultural origin. Generally, most studies on the surface-level subfactor of gender differences point to the conclusions that gender matters more in face-to-face teams and that women seem to flourish in global virtual teams (GVTs). For example, Bhappu, et al. 1997 finds that individuals in face-to-face groups pay more attention to gender differences than those in computer-mediated communication (CMC) groups, even when gender is identified in the latter. Other GVT studies on surface-level subfactors center on national/cultural diversity. For example, Jarvenpaa and Leidner 1999 manipulates a subject’s national culture (country of origin), finding that cultural composition affects the formation of trust in GVTs. Haas 2005 discovers that a mix of locals and cosmopolitans is optimal for GVT performance. Researchers have also examined the effects of deep-level subfactors (values, personality, competencies), focusing mostly on cultural values, personality factors, and cognition. In one study on the effects of cultural values, Tan, et al. 1998 concludes that majority positions are challenged more in an individualistic culture (the United States) than in a collectivistic culture (Singapore). Harrison, et al. 2000 finds that in comparison with Australians, Taiwanese have more-negative attitudes when teams have a highly fluid, changing membership, in part because of differences in the perceived importance of maintaining relationships in groups. In addition to research on cultural values, several authors have performed studies on the effects of certain personality traits and cognition. Relating to personality, Lee-Kelley 2006 finds that, compared to face-to-face teams, a negative relationship exists between role conflict and job satisfaction for individuals who rate high on internal locus of control. Finally, several authors have conducted research on the deep-level subfactor of cognition. Workman, et al. 2003 establishes that certain cognitive styles affect GVT outcomes: relationships both between external and conservative cognitive styles and commitment to virtual teams are stronger when individuals report using richer, rather than leaner, communication media.

  • Bhappu, Anita D., Terri L. Griffith, and Gregory B. Northcraft. “Media Effects and Communication Bias in Diverse Groups.” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 70.3 (1997): 199–205.

    DOI: 10.1006/obhd.1997.2704Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of seventeen six-person undergraduate teams in the United States, the authors found that individuals in face-to-face groups paid more attention to gender differences (i.e., in-group/out-group differences) than those in CMC groups, even when gender was identified.

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  • Haas, Martine R. “Acquiring and Applying Knowledge in Transnational Teams: The Roles of Cosmopolitans and Locals.” Organization Science 17.3 (2005): 367–384.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.1060.0187Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The author examined the impact of two subgroups, cosmopolitans and locals, and found that both cosmopolitans (individuals with broad experience in many countries) and locals helped to increase internal knowledge, while cosmopolitans, but not locals, helped to increase external knowledge. Her conclusion: a mix both of locals and cosmopolitans was optimal for GVT performance.

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  • Han, Soo Jeoung and Michael Beyerlein. “Framing the Effects of Multinational Cultural Diversity on Virtual Team Processes.” Small Group Research 47.4 (2016): 351–383.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496416653480Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    An extensive literature review resulted in a framework that included four socioemotional (overcoming biases, building relationships, developing trust, and intercultural learning) and four task-related (task-related communicating, coordinating, establishing expectations, and knowledge sharing) challenges on which team leaders should focus when leading nationally and culturally diverse virtual teams.

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  • Harrison, Graeme L., Jill L. McKinnon, Anne Wu, and Chee W. Chow. “Cultural Influences on Adaptation to Fluid Workgroups and Teams.” Journal of International Business Studies 31.3 (2000): 489–505.

    DOI: 10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8490918Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The researchers found that in comparison with Australians, Taiwanese had more-negative attitudes when teams had a highly fluid, changing membership, in part because of differences in the perceived importance of maintaining relationships in groups.

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  • Hill, N. Sharon and Kathryn M. Bartol. “Empowering Leadership and Effective Collaboration in Geographically Dispersed Teams.” Personnel Psychology 69.1 (2016): 159–198.

    DOI: 10.1111/peps.12108Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Within one multinational corporation, empowering leadership shaped individual team member’s use of virtual teamwork situational judgment. This, in turn, enabled effective virtual collaboration behaviors and individual performance. At the team level, at higher levels of team dispersion, empowering leadership fostered aggregate virtual collaboration, and indirectly on team performance.

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  • Jarvenpaa, Sirkka L., and Dorothy E. Leidner. “Communication and Trust in Global Virtual Teams.” In Special Issue: Communication Processes for Virtual Organizations. Organization Science 10.6 (1999): 791–815.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.10.6.791Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment, the authors manipulated a subject’s national culture (country of origin) to find that cultural composition affects the formation of trust in GVTs.

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  • Lee-Kelley, Liz. “Locus of Control and Attitudes to Working in Virtual Teams.” International Journal of Project Management 24.3 (2006): 234–243.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijproman.2006.01.003Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on a sample of 108 members of virtual teams in a defense organization in the United Kingdom, the authors compared face-to-face teams and found a negative relationship between role conflict and job satisfaction for those individuals who rated high on internal locus of control.

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  • Tan, Bernard C. Y., Kwok-Kee Wei, Richard T. Watson, Danial L. Clapper, and Ephraim R. McLean. “Computer-Mediated Communication and Majority Influence: Assessing the Impact in an Individualistic and Collectivistic Culture.” Management Science 44.9 (1998): 1263–1278.

    DOI: 10.1287/mnsc.44.9.1263Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of 119 university students in Singapore and the United States, the authors found that majority positions were challenged more in the individualistic culture (the United States) than in the collectivistic culture (Singapore).

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  • Workman, Michael, William Kahnweiler, and William Bommer. “The Effects of Cognitive Style and Media Richness on Commitment to Telework and Virtual Teams.” Journal of Vocational Behavior 63.2 (2003): 199–219.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0001-8791(03)00041-1Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that individuals’ commitment to virtual teams was stronger when they had cognitive styles characterized as external, conservative, and global. The relationships between both external and conservative cognitive styles and commitment to virtual teams were stronger when individuals reported using richer, rather than leaner, communication media.

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Team

Team-level input factors for GVTs include the subfactors of anonymity, leadership, task structure, team size, interdependence, role definition, and task complexity, with GVT scholars devoting most of their efforts to the subfactors of anonymity, leadership, task structure, and team size. In regard to anonymity, Sassenberg and Boos 2003 finds that higher anonymity and computer-mediated communication (CMC) causes more conformity to individual needs or goals when personal identity is important, and that higher conformity to a higher-order socially shared norm is the result when social identity is important. Reinig and Mejias 2004 concludes that both anonymous groups and individualistic (US) groups produced more-critical comments than identified or collectivistic (Hong Kong) groups. Concerning leadership, several studies have been conducted on the critical success factors, best practices, and tactics for virtual team leadership. The authors of Han and Beyerlein 2016 (cited under Global Virtual Team Inputs: Individual), through an extensive literature review, conclude that there are four socioemotional and four task-related challenges on which team leaders should focus. Kayworth and Leidner 2000 identifies four critical success factors for virtual team leadership: communication, culture, technology, and project management (leadership). Hill and Bartol 2016 (cited under Global Virtual Team Inputs: Individual) finds that empowering leadership shaped individual team member’s use of virtual teamwork situational judgment and fostered virtual team collaboration. Hoch and Kozlowski 2014 finds that structural supports and shared team leadership are strongly related to team performance when teams are more virtual in nature. Likewise, Malhotra, et al. 2001 identifies several leadership practices for managing successful virtual teams: establish virtual team strategy initially, encourage the use of knowledge management/collaborative tools, and restructure work without changing core creative needs. In another case study on a sample of four virtual team leaders from four international organizations, Sivunen 2006 pinpoints four leadership tactics employed to enhance team identification: focusing on the needs of the individual, giving positive feedback, emphasizing common goals by “talking up” team activities, and having face-to-face meetings. Cogliser, et al. 2012, however, finds that aggregated, socially oriented leadership behaviors predict aggregate perceptions of team trustworthiness and are more important because only aggregated task-oriented emergent leadership behaviors predict virtual team performance. Hence, authors have also discovered that the structure of a task matters. For example, Walther and Bunz 2005 concludes that the degree of self-reported adherence to a set of teamwork rules is related to task attraction and self-rated task success. Majchrzak, et al. 2005 finds that when individuals perceive their task as nonroutine, there is a positive relationship between an individual’s perceived degree of information technology (IT) support for communicating context information and one’s collaboration know-how development, whereas when individuals perceive their task as routine, partial IT support for contextualization is associated with lower levels of collaboration know-how development. In comparison to members of larger teams, Bradner, et al. 2005 determines that team size is associated with different choices of technology: larger teams adopt technology to support the coordination of asynchronous work, while smaller teams adopt technology that primarily supports collaboration.

  • Bradner, Erin, Gloria Mark, and Tammie D. Hertel. “Team Size and Technology Fit: Participation, Awareness, and Rapport in Distributed Teams.” IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication 48.1 (2005): 68–77.

    DOI: 10.1109/TPC.2004.843299Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that larger teams adopted technology to support the coordination of asynchronous work, while smaller teams adopted technology that primarily supported collaboration; members of smaller teams participated more actively, were more committed to and aware of team goals, had greater awareness of other members, and had higher levels of rapport. Larger teams were more conscientious in preparing agendas.

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  • Cogliser, Claudia C., William L. Gardner, Mark B. Gavin, and J. Christian Broberg. “Big Five Personality Factors and Leader Emergence in Virtual Teams: Relationships with Team Trustworthiness, Member Performance Contributions, and Team Performance.” Group & Organization Management 37.6 (2012): 752–784.

    DOI: 10.1177/1059601112464266Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using a sample of 243 undergraduate business students assigned to seventy-one virtual teams, the authors find that agreeableness and conscientiousness are positively related to the task- and social-oriented dimensions of leader emergence in virtual teams; at the team level, aggregated, social-oriented leadership behaviors predict team trustworthiness but only aggregated task-oriented emergent leadership behaviors predict virtual team performance.

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  • Hoch, Julia E., and Steve W. J. Kozlowski. “Leading Virtual Teams: Hierarchical Leadership, Structural Supports, and Shared Team Leadership.” Journal of Applied Psychology 99.3 (2014): 390–403.

    DOI: 10.1037/a0030264Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using a field sample of 101 virtual teams, the researchers found that structural supports and shared team leadership are more (and hierarchical leadership is less) strongly related to team performance, depending on the degree of the team’s virtualness.

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  • Kayworth, Timothy, and Dorothy Leidner. “The Global Virtual Manager: A Prescription for Success.” European Management Journal 18.2 (2000): 183–194.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0263-2373(99)00090-0Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field experiment method on a sample of twelve student GVTs (with five to seven persons on each team) from Europe, Mexico, and the United States, the authors identified four critical success factors for virtual team leadership: communication, culture, technology, and project management (leadership).

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  • Majchrzak, Ann, Arvind Malhotra, and Richard John. “Perceived Individual Collaboration Know-How Development through Information Technology-Enabled Contextualization: Evidence from Distributed Teams.” Information Systems Research 16.1 (2005): 19–27.

    DOI: 10.1287/isre.1050.0044Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that when individuals perceive their task as nonroutine, a positive relationship exists between an individual’s perceived degree of IT support for communicating context information and his or her collaboration know-how development, whereas when individuals perceive their task as routine, partial IT support for contextualization is associated with lower levels of collaboration know-how development.

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  • Malhotra, Arvind, Ann Majchrzak, Robert Carman, and Vern Lott. “Radical Innovation without Collocation: A Case Study at Boeing-Rocketdyne.” MIS Quarterly 259.2 (2001): 229–249.

    DOI: 10.2307/3250930Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the case study method on a single virtual team in the aerospace industry, the authors identified several leadership practices for managing successful virtual teams: establish virtual team strategy initially, encourage the use of knowledge management/collaborative tools, and restructure work without changing core creative needs.

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  • Reinig, Bruce A., and Roberto J. Mejias. “The Effects of National Culture and Anonymity on Flaming and Criticalness in GSS-Supported Discussions.” Small Group Research 35.6 (2004): 698–723.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496404266773Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of thirty-nine groups of six to seven university students located in the United States and Hong Kong, the authors found that both anonymous groups and individualistic (US) groups produced more-critical comments than identified or collectivistic (Hong Kong) groups, but they found no effects on flaming comments.

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  • Sassenberg, Kai, and Margarete Boos. “Attitude Change in Computer-Mediated Communication: Effects of Anonymity and Category Norms.” Group Process and Intergroup Relations 6.4 (2003): 405–422.

    DOI: 10.1177/13684302030064006Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on 145 undergraduate students in Germany, the authors found that a higher amount of anonymity and CMC caused more conformity to individual needs or goals when personal identity was important, and that higher conformity to a higher-order socially shared norm was the result when social identity was important.

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  • Sivunen, Anu. “Strengthening Identification with the Team in Virtual Teams: The Leaders’ Perspective.” Group Decision and Negotiation 15.4 (2006): 345–366.

    DOI: 10.1007/s10726-006-9046-6Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the case study method on a sample of four virtual team leaders from four international organizations, the authors identified four leadership tactics employed to enhance team identification: catering to the individual needs of members, offering positive feedback, highlighting common goals by emphasizing or “talking up” team activities, and holding face-to-face meetings.

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  • Walther, Joseph B., and Ulla Bunz. “The Rules of Virtual Groups: Trust, Liking, and Performance in Computer-Mediated Communication.” Journal of Communication 55.4 (2005): 828–846.

    DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-2466.2005.tb03025.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on a sample of forty-four US undergraduate students, the authors found that the degree of self-reported adherence to a set of teamwork rules (start immediately, communicate frequently, acknowledge others, be explicit, multitask, and observe deadlines) was related to the positive individual outcomes of trust, task attraction, social attraction, and self-rated task success.

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Organizational

Scholars have also examined the organizational-level GVT subfactors of cultural and organizational boundaries, technology, geographic dispersion, and proportion of collocation. Within cultural and organizational boundaries, Workman 2005 finds that team boundary permeability strengthens the positive effects of various aspects of virtual team culture on team performance. Regarding technology, Pesendorfer and Köszegi 2006 posits that determining the appropriate technology enables effective team communication. In the same study of technology, researchers found that synchronous negotiation led to less friendly, more affective, and more competitive negotiation behavior, whereas in the asynchronous communication mode, negotiators exchanged more private and task-oriented information, were friendlier, and were more satisfied with the process and outcome of the negotiation. Boudreau, et al. 1998 asserts that designing an effective transnational organization depends on the effective deployment of technologies (advanced information), structures (e.g., forging alliances and partnerships), spatial independence, and flexibility. Several studies have been conducted on the effects of geographic dispersion on GVTs. In most cases, scholars have found that geographic dispersion negatively affects GVTs. Cramton and Webber 2005 concludes that geographic dispersion negatively relates to work processes (communication, coordination) and team effectiveness, and that work processes partially mediate the relationship between geographic dispersion and team effectiveness. Metiu 2006 finds that geographical dispersion increases processes related to status closure (the monopolization of opportunities by higher-status groups at the expense of lower-status groups), and that status closure results in less intergroup cooperation within the overall GVT. However, one study contradicted these findings: Chudoba, et al. 2005 demonstrates no effects of geographic dispersion on self-assessed team performance; moreover, being distributed has no impact on self-assessed team performance. To shed some light on the mixed results of geographic dispersion, one study introduces the mitigating factor of psychological safety. Gibson and Gibbs 2006 determines that the negative effect of geographic dispersion on team innovation is less for teams with psychologically safe communication. The last organizational-level subfactor is proportion of collocation. Spears, et al. 1990 finds that group polarization is stronger in deindividuated (physically separate members) CMC groups in which group identity is salient, compared to deindividuated CMC groups in which individual identity is salient.

  • Boudreau, Marie-Claude, Karen D. Loch, Daniel Robey, and Detmar Straud. “Going Global: Using Information Technology to Advance the Competitiveness of the Virtual Transnational Organization.” Academy of Management Executive 12.4 (1998): 120–128.

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    The authors assert that designing an effective transnational organization depends on the effective deployment of technologies (advanced information), structures (e.g., forging alliances and partnerships), spatial independence, and flexibility.

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  • Chudoba, Katherine M., Eleanor Wynn, Mei Lu, and Mary B. Watson-Manheim. “How Virtual Are We? Measuring Virtuality and Understanding Its Impact in a Global Organization.” Information Systems Journal 15.4 (2005): 279–306.

    DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2575.2005.00200.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on a sample of 1,269 worldwide employees of a multinational company, the authors found no effects of geographic dispersion on self-assessed team performance. Moreover, they found that being distributed had no impact on self-assessed team performance.

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  • Cramton, Catherine D., and Sheila Simsarian Webber. “Relationships among Geographic Dispersion, Team Processes, and Effectiveness in Software Development Work Teams.” Journal of Business Research 58.6 (2005): 758–765.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2003.10.006Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on a sample of thirty-nine software development work teams in Europe and the United States, the authors found that geographic dispersion negatively related to work processes (communication, coordination) and team effectiveness, and work processes partially mediated the relationship between geographic dispersion and team effectiveness.

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  • Gibson, Cristina B., and Jennifer L. Gibbs. “Unpacking the Concept of Virtuality: The Effects of Geographic Dispersion, Electronic Dependence, Dynamic Structure, and National Diversity on Team Innovation.” Administrative Science Quarterly 51.3 (2006): 451–495.

    DOI: 10.2189/asqu.51.3.451Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using both qualitative analysis and field survey methods on a sample of 443 employees in seventy teams from more than eighteen countries, the authors found that the negative effect of geographic dispersion on team innovation was less for the teams with psychologically safe communication.

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  • Metiu, Anca. “Owning the Code: Status Closure in Distributed Groups.” Organization Science 17.4 (2006): 418–435.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.1060.0195Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that geographical dispersion increased processes related to status closure (the monopolization of opportunities by higher-status groups at the expense of lower-status groups), and that status closure resulted in less intergroup cooperation within the overall GVT.

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  • Pesendorfer, Eva-Marie, and Sabine T. Köszegi. “Hot versus Cool Behavioral Styles in Electronic Negotiations: The Impact of Communication Mode.” Group Decision and Negotiations 15.2 (2006): 141–155.

    DOI: 10.1007/s10726-006-9025-ySave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that communication modes matter. Specifically, a synchronous negotiation mode led to less friendly, more affective, and more competitive negotiation behavior, whereas in the asynchronous communication mode, negotiators exchanged more private and task-oriented information and were friendlier and more satisfied with the process and outcome of the negotiation.

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  • Spears, Russell, Martin Lea, and Stephen Lee. “De-individuation and Group Polarization in Computer-Mediated Communication.” British Journal of Social Psychology 29.2 (1990): 121–134.

    DOI: 10.1111/j.2044-8309.1990.tb00893.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on forty-eight students in Europe, the authors found that group polarization was stronger in deindividuated (physically separate members) CMC groups in which group identity was salient than in deindividuated CMC groups in which individual identity was salient.

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  • Workman, Michael. “Virtual Team Culture and the Amplification of Team Boundary Permeability on Performance.” Human Resource Development Quarterly 16.4 (2005): 435–458.

    DOI: 10.1002/hrdq.1149Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the survey method on a sample of 436 virtual team projects in a global IT firm, the authors found that team boundary permeability strengthened the positive effects of various aspects of virtual team culture on team performance.

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Global Virtual Team Emergent States

This section is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework and focuses on emergent states, the “E” of IEPO. Emergent states include both Individual and Team factors. Each factor is comprised of subfactors.

Individual

Individual-level team emergent state factors include five subfactors: confidence, empowerment, trust, psychological safety, and resistance. In regard to confidence or efficacy, several studies have been conducted. For example, Hardin, et al. 2007 finds that regardless of cultural origin, team members report less confidence in their ability to work in virtual team environments than in face-to-face environments; team members from individualistic cultures such as the United States report higher self-efficacy beliefs (both group self-efficacy and virtual team self-efficacy) than team members from collectivist cultures (e.g., Hong Kong). When the reference for efficacy beliefs changes from the individual to the group, the magnitude of change is greater for collectivist than for individualistic team members. Staples and Webster 2007 finds that self-efficacy for teamwork is more important for virtual teams than for traditional face-to-face and hybrid teams. Several studies have been conducted on the subfactor of trust. The first set of studies uses trust as the criterion variable (i.e., a dependent variable). In one example, Polzer, et al. 2006 concludes that the lowest levels of trust occur in virtual teams consisting of two same-nationality collocated subgroups. The authors’ findings lend credence to the existence of fault-line effects on nationality. Stewart and Gosain 2006 examines open-source software project teams and finds that adherence to the ideological tenets of the open-source software community (values, norms, and beliefs) positively affects both trust and communication quality, which in turn affects team performance. Aubert and Kelsey 2003 (cited under Global Virtual Team Processes: Communication) determines that one’s belief in other team members’ ability, integrity, and propensity to trust are positively related to one’s trust in the team members in virtual teams; however, trust is not related to team performance. Morris, et al. 2002 indicates that user satisfaction and trust are positively related to job satisfaction in virtual teams. Piccoli and Ives 2003 finds that typical behavior control mechanisms used in traditional teams have a negative effect on trust in virtual teams. Other studies have examined trust as a predictor variable (i.e., an independent variable) for global virtual team (GVT) outcomes. For example, Jarvenpaa, et al. 1998 concludes that a two-week trust-building exercise had an effect on the team members’ perceptions of the other members’ ability, integrity, and benevolence.

  • Hardin, Andrew M., Mark A. Fuller, and Robert M. Davison. “I Know I Can, but Can We? Culture and Efficacy Beliefs in Global Virtual Teams.” Small Group Research 38.1 (2007): 130–155.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496406297041Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that regardless of cultural origin, team members reported less confidence in their ability to work in virtual team environments than in face-to-face environments; team members from individualistic cultures (the United States) reported higher self-efficacy beliefs (both group self-efficacy and virtual team self-efficacy) than did team members from collectivist cultures (Hong Kong).

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  • Jarvenpaa, Sirkka L., Kathleen Knoll, and Dorothy E. Leidner. “Is Anybody Out There? Antecedents of Trust in Global Virtual Teams.” Journal of Management Information Systems 14.4 (1998): 29–64.

    DOI: 10.1080/07421222.1998.11518185Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that a two-week trust-building exercise had an effect on the team members’ perceptions of the other members’ ability, integrity, and benevolence.

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  • Jarvenpaa, Sirkka L., and Dorothy E. Leidner. “Communication and Trust in Global Virtual Teams.” In Special Issue: Communication Processes for Virtual Organizations. Organization Science 10.6 (1999): 791–815.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.10.6.791Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that communication and trust are linked. GVTs develop a form of swift trust quickly, but such forms of trust are often fragile and temporary. Different sets of actions and behaviors are linked to building trust early in GVTs and maintaining trust at later stages.

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  • Morris, Steven A., Thomas E. Marshall, and R. Kelly Rainer Jr. “Impact of User Satisfaction and Trust on Virtual Team Members.” Information Resources Management Journal 15.2 (2002): 22–30.

    DOI: 10.4018/irmj.2002040103Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using the field survey method on a sample of 158 information technology (IT) consultants and developers, the authors found that user satisfaction and trust are positively related to job satisfaction in virtual teams.

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  • Piccoli, Gabriele, and Blake Ives. “Trust and the Unintended Effects of Behavior Control in Virtual Teams.” MIS Quarterly 27.3 (2003): 365–395.

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    Behavior control mechanisms typical in traditional teams had a negative effect on trust in virtual teams. Behavior control mechanisms increased vigilance and made salient instances when individuals perceived that team members appeared to have failed to uphold their obligations. Heightened vigilance and salience increased the likelihood that team members’ failure to fulfill their obligations would be detected, thus contributing to trust decline.

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  • Polzer, Jeffrey T., C. Brad Crisp, Sirkka Jarvenpaa, and Jerry W. Kim. “Extending the Faultline Model to Geographically Dispersed Teams: How Collocated Subgroups Can Impair Group Functioning.” Academy of Management Journal 49.4 (2006): 679–692.

    DOI: 10.5465/AMJ.2006.22083024Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Conducting an experiment on sample of forty-five virtual teams of graduate students in ten countries, the authors found that the lowest levels of trust occurred in virtual teams consisting of two same-nationality collocated subgroups. Their findings lend credence to the assertion that fault-line effects on nationality exist.

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  • Staples, D. Sandy, and Jane Webster. “Exploring Traditional and Virtual Team Members’ ‘Best Practices’: A Social Cognitive Theory Perspective.” Small Group Research 38.1 (2007): 60–97.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496406296961Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Using case study and field survey methods on six best practices teams and 493 working adults in a variety of organizations, the authors found that self-efficacy for teamwork was more important for virtual teams than for the traditional face-to-face and hybrid teams.

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  • Stewart, Katherine J., and Sanjay Gosain. “The Impact of Ideology on Effectiveness in Open Source Software Development Teams.” MIS Quarterly 30.2 (2006): 291–314.

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    Using the field survey method on a sample of sixty-seven open-source software project teams, the authors found that adherence to the ideological tenets of the open-source software community (its values, norms, and beliefs) positively affected both trust and communication quality, which in turn affected team performance.

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Team

Team-level emergent state factors include six subfactors: confidence (team efficacy), empowerment, potency, climate, cohesion, and collective cognition. In regard to the team-level emergent state of confidence or team efficacy, the authors of Fuller, et al. 2006–2007 use the field survey method on 243 student teams from the United States and Hong Kong and find that regardless of cultural origin, team members reported less confidence in their ability to work in virtual team environments than in face-to-face environments; team members from individualistic cultures (the United States) reported higher group self-efficacy and virtual team self-efficacy than team members from collectivist cultures (Hong Kong), and when the reference for efficacy beliefs changed from the individual to the group, the magnitude of change was greater for collectivist than for individualistic team members. In regard to group potency, the authors of Fuller, et al. 2006–2007 use the field survey method on student project teams from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Hong Kong, finding that group potency and computer collective efficacy act as antecedents to virtual team efficacy. Virtual team efficacy is, in turn, related to perceptual and objective measures of performance. Moreover, the authors found that effort fully mediates, and communication partially mediates, the effects of virtual team efficacy on performance. Two compelling studies have been conducted on the subfactors of cohesion and collective cognition. The authors of Gonzalez, et al. 2003 employ the survey method on a sample of seventy-one groups engaged in distance learning in a university setting in Mexico, finding that task cohesion mediates the relationship between collective efficacy and group effectiveness, with team and peer facilitation serving as a direct antecedent to group effectiveness. The authors of Baba, et al. 2004 use the qualitative analysis method on a sample of one globally distributed team and find that the process of cognitive convergence (i.e., increasing similarity of individual cognitive structures through information sharing) is related to virtual team performance only when patterns of cognitive divergence are also reversed. Variables that facilitate the relationship between cognitive convergence and performance also include similar experiences in a common context, revealing hidden truths through knowledge brokering, and shifts in agent self-interest and negotiation of task interdependence. Similarly, the authors of Maynard and Gilson 2014 develop a framework that links a communication technologies to the development of collective cognition.

  • Baba, Marietta L., Julia Gluesing, Hilary Ratner, and Kimberly H. Wagner. “The Contexts of Knowing: Natural History of a Globally Distributed Team.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 25.4 (2004): 547–587.

    DOI: 10.1002/job.259Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that the process of cognitive convergence was related to virtual team performance only when patterns of cognitive divergence were also reversed. Variables that facilitated the relationship between cognitive convergence and performance also included similar experiences in a common context, revealing hidden truths through knowledge brokering, and shifts in agent self-interest and negotiation of task interdependence.

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  • Fuller, Mark A., Andrew M. Hardin, and Robert M. Davison. “Efficacy in Technology-Mediated Distributed Teams.” Journal of Management Information Systems 23.3 (2006–2007): 209–235.

    DOI: 10.2753/MIS0742-1222230308Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that group potency and computer collective efficacy acted as antecedents to virtual team efficacy. Virtual team efficacy was related, in turn, to perceptual and objective measures of performance. Moreover, the authors found that effort fully mediated, and communication partially mediated, the effects of virtual team efficacy on performance.

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  • Gonzalez, Mauricio G., Michael J. Burke, Alecia M. Santuzzi, and Jill C. Bradley. “The Impact of Group Process Variables on the Effectiveness of Distance Collaboration Groups.” Computers in Human Behavior 19.5 (2003): 629–648.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0747-5632(02)00084-5Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that task cohesion mediated the relationship between collective efficacy and group effectiveness, with team and peer facilitation serving as a direct antecedent to group effectiveness.

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  • Hardin, Andrew M., Mark A. Fuller, and Robert M. Davison. “I Know I Can, but Can We? Culture and Efficacy Beliefs in Global Virtual Teams.” Small Group Research 38.1 (2007): 130–155.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496406297041Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that regardless of cultural origin, team members reported less confidence in their ability to work in virtual team environments than in face-to-face environments; team members from individualistic cultures (the United States) reported higher self-efficacy beliefs (both group self-efficacy and virtual team self-efficacy) than team members from collectivist cultures (Hong Kong).

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  • Maynard, M. Travis, and Lucy L. Gilson. “The Role of Shared Mental Model Development in Understanding Virtual Team Effectiveness.” Group & Organization Management 39.1 (2014): 3–32.

    DOI: 10.1177/1059601113475361Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors develop a conceptual framework to explain the mixed findings in research by previous virtual teams, by looking at the relationship among shared mental models, task interdependence, and virtual team performance. The authors also link how different features of communication technologies influence the development of shared mental models.

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Global Virtual Team Processes

This section is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework and focuses on processes, the “P” of IEPO. As previously mentioned, processes include the factors of Global Virtual Team Processes: Coordination, Global Virtual Team Processes: Communication, Global Virtual Team Processes: Problem Solving, and Global Virtual Team Processes: Conflict Management. The coordination factor has a temporal subfactor.

Coordination

Several interesting studies have been conducted on the subfactor of global virtual team (GVT) coordination. One set of studies examined the role of goals. For example, Forester, et al. 2007 finds that goal setting is related to perceptions of outcomes in virtual teams; goal commitment is significantly positively related both to perceived task outcome and psychosocial outcomes, whereas quality of goal setting is related only to perceived task outcome. Walther and Bazarova 2007 concludes that externally imposing an observational goal mitigates attributional bias among distributed members by raising awareness of the socio-technical effects of the communication medium among those for whom the goal was successfully induced. More specifically, attributions for participants’ own poor performance reflect a self-serving bias in completely distributed groups, whose members eschew personal responsibility and blame their partners more than in collocated groups. Another set of studies identified key coordination mechanisms. One such study, Qureshi, et al. 2006, a model of electronic collaboration, integrates three key elements for virtual team success: communication, coordination, and adaptation. Using the exploratory qualitative study method on a sample of five graduate student teams in Norway and the United States, the authors of Munkvold and Zigurs 2007 identify factors influencing team process and outcomes (trust among team members, well-defined task structure, time differences, mismatch in expectations, cultural differences). Specifically, the authors found that swift-starting virtual teams needed to structure their interaction from the onset: introducing team members’ background and competence, discussing project goals and deliverables, defining roles and responsibilities, and setting milestones. In addition, swift-starting virtual teams have to pay immediate attention to familiarizing themselves with and integrating available technology, and to agreeing on preferred communication media and frequency. Finally, one study found that self-coordination produce positive outcomes. In this study, the authors of Sole and Edmondson 2002 use the qualitative field study method and discover that although virtual teams can easily access and use unique, locale-specific knowledge resources to resolve problems that arise in those same locales, they encounter difficulties in uncovering and sharing situated knowledge (knowledge embedded in the work practices of a particular organizational site).

  • Forester, Gerald L., Peg Thoms, and Jeffrey J. Pinto. “Importance of Goal Setting in Virtual Project Teams.” Psychological Reports 100.1 (2007): 270–274.

    DOI: 10.2466/pr0.100.1.270-274Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that goal setting is related to perceptions of outcomes in virtual teams. Specifically, goal commitment was significantly positively related to both perceived task outcome and psychosocial outcomes, whereas quality of goal setting was related only to perceived task outcome.

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  • Munkvold, Bjørn Erick, and Ilze Zigurs. “Process and Technology Challenges in Swift-Starting Virtual Teams.” Information & Management 44.3 (2007): 287–299.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.im.2007.01.002Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors identified factors that influence team process and outcomes: trust among team members, well-defined task structure, time differences, mismatch in expectations, and cultural differences.

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  • Qureshi, Sajda, Min Liu, and Doug Vogel. “The Effects of Electronic Collaboration in Distributed Project Management.” Group Decision and Negotiation 15.1 (2006): 55–75.

    DOI: 10.1007/s10726-005-9006-6Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors developed a model of electronic collaboration that integrates three key elements for virtual team success: communication, coordination, and adaptation.

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  • Sole, Deborah, and Amy Edmondson. “Situated Knowledge and Learning in Dispersed Teams.” British Journal of Management 13.S2 (2002): S17–S34.

    DOI: 10.1111/1467-8551.13.s2.3Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors discovered that although virtual teams can easily access and use unique, locale-specific knowledge resources to resolve problems that arise in those same locales, they encountered difficulties in uncovering and sharing situated knowledge (knowledge embedded in the work practices of a particular organizational site).

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  • Walther, Joseph B., and Natalya N. Bazarova. “Misattribution in Virtual Groups: The Effects of Member Distribution on Self-Serving Bias and Partner Blame.” Human Communication Research 33.1 (2007): 1–26.

    DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2958.2007.00286.xSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that attributions for participants’ own poor performance reflected a self-serving bias in completely distributed groups, whose members eschewed personal responsibility and blamed their partners more than did those in collocated groups.

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Coordination: Temporal

In addition to coordination mechanisms, several authors have delved into the effects of time on coordination. For example, Montoya-Weiss, et al. 2001 finds that GVTs are more able to manage conflict when they incorporate formal coordinating and scheduling mechanisms supported by communication technologies that help team members contribute at different points in time. This study also found that certain conflict-handling strategies (e.g., competition, collaboration) were positively related to virtual team performance, while others (e.g., avoidance, compromise) were negatively related. In addition, introducing a formal, structured plan for managing team time and activities weakens the negative effects of avoidance and compromise on virtual team performance. The authors of Maznevski and Chudoba 2000 use a case study method on three GVTs, finding that virtual team dynamics are characterized by a series of interaction incidents incorporating a set of decision processes using a particular medium that are shaped by a limited set of structural characteristics, and also by repeating temporal patterns of regular face-to-face meetings in which the intensity of interaction is extremely high, followed by a period of some weeks in which interaction incidents were less intense. The authors’ findings indicate that GVTs develop temporal rhythms around periods of high interdependence. In a final temporal study, the authors of Massey, et al. 2003 performed a laboratory experiment and found that schedule deadlines, coordinated pace of effort within and between members, and specification of time spent on specific tasks (i.e., temporal coordination mechanisms) are associated with higher team performance and are mediated through team interaction behaviors.

  • Massey, Anne P., Mitzi M. Montoya-Weiss, and Yu-Ting Hung. “Because Time Matters: Temporal Coordination in Global Virtual Project Teams.” Journal of Management Information Systems 19.4 (2003): 129–155.

    DOI: 10.1080/07421222.2003.11045742Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that schedule deadlines, coordinated pace of effort within and between members, and specification of time spent on specific tasks (i.e., temporal coordination mechanisms) were associated with higher team performance and mediated through team interaction behaviors (e.g., informational, decisional, and interpersonal behaviors).

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  • Maznevski, Martha L., and Katherine M. Chudoba. “Bridging Space over Time: Global Virtual Team Dynamics and Effectiveness.” Organization Science 11.5 (2000): 473–492.

    DOI: 10.1287/orsc.11.5.473.15200Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    GVTs develop temporal rhythms around periods of high interdependence, characterized by a series of interaction incidents incorporating decision processes using a particular medium that are shaped by a limited set of structural characteristics, and also by repeating temporal patterns of regular face-to-face meetings in which intensity of interaction is extremely high, followed by a period in which interaction incidents are less intense.

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  • Montoya-Weiss, Mitzi M., Anne P. Massey, and Michael Song. “Getting It Together: Temporal Coordination and Conflict Management in Global Virtual Teams.” Academy of Management Journal 44.6 (2001): 1251–1262.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069399Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that GVTs are more able to manage conflict when they incorporate formal coordinating and scheduling mechanisms supported by communication technologies that help team members contribute at different points in time.

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Communication

The next process subfactor is communication, on which several meaningful studies have been produced. For example, Aubert and Kelsey 2003 indicates that information symmetry and good communication distinguishes high-performance teams from low-performance teams. Another type of communication study, Anawati and Craig 2006 finds that members of cross-cultural virtual teams adapt their behaviors in spoken and written communication while allowing for religious beliefs and time zone differences. Along the same lines, Hofner Saphiere 1996 demonstrates that the most successful teams communicate more often in informal, social ways; utilize more task and affect behaviors; frequently disagree with one another; critically analyze issues in meetings and focus on tasks in a positive manner in writing; act as cultural interpreters and mediators; and unanimously desire to work together again in the future. Similarly, Lea and Spears 1992 finds that depending on the content of group members’ paralanguage, communicators rate their partners differently, and communicators whose group identity is made salient evaluate users of paralanguage more positively than when group salience is low. These findings suggest that social context does not need to be dramatically reduced in groups using computer-mediated communication (CMC). A final communication study, the authors of Crowston, et al. 2007 use qualitative methods on virtual project teams engaged in open-source software development and find that, contrary to conventional wisdom about distributed teams, such team members generally do not meet face to face until the project is in a mature stage, and that the benefit of face-to-face meetings is time away from a regular job and speed of interaction for certain kinds of tasks. Because open-source software development is considered task interdependent, these findings contradict earlier findings that face-to-face communication should occur earlier among teams with interdependent tasks.

  • Anawati, Danielle, and Annemieke Craig. “Behavioral Adaptation within Cross-Cultural Virtual Teams.” IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication 49.1 (2006): 44–56.

    DOI: 10.1109/TPC.2006.870459Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that cross-cultural virtual teams’ members adapt their behaviors in spoken and written communication while allowing for religious beliefs and time zone differences.

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  • Aubert, Benoit A., and Barbara L. Kelsey. “Further Understanding of Trust and Performance in Virtual Teams.” Small Group Research 34.5 (2003): 575–618.

    DOI: 10.1177/1046496403256011Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that information symmetry and good communication distinguished high-performance teams from low-performance teams.

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  • Crowston, Kevin, James Howison, Chengetai Masango, and U. Yeliz Eseryel. “The Role of Face-to-Face Meetings in Technology-Supported Self-Organizing Distributed Teams.” IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication 50.3 (2007): 185–203.

    DOI: 10.1109/TPC.2007.902654Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that, contrary to conventional wisdom about distributed teams, open-source software development team members generally do not meet face to face until the project is in a mature stage, and that the benefit of face-to-face meetings is time away from a regular job and speed of interaction for certain kinds of tasks.

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  • Hofner Saphiere, Dianne M. “Productive Behaviors of Global Business Teams.” International Journal of Intercultural Relations 20.2 (1996): 227–259.

    DOI: 10.1016/0147-1767(95)00043-7Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The author found that the most-successful teams communicated more often in informal, social ways; utilized more task and affect behaviors; frequently disagreed with one another; critically analyzed issues in meetings and focused on tasks in a positive manner in writing; acted as cultural interpreters and mediators; and unanimously desired to work together again in the future.

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  • Lea, Martin, and Russell Spears. “Paralanguage and Social Perception in Computer-Mediated Communication.” Journal of Organizational Computing 2.3–4 (1992): 321–341.

    DOI: 10.1080/10919399209540190Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors’ findings suggest that social context does not need to be dramatically reduced in groups using CMC; however, paralanguage (symbols, codes, and other cues) used to convey meaning does.

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Problem Solving

Within the realm of the problem-solving subfactor, researchers have found some interesting results. For example, using the qualitative field study method, Sole and Edmondson 2002 contends that although virtual teams can easily access and use unique, locale-specific knowledge resources to resolve problems that arise in those same locales, they encounter difficulties in uncovering and sharing situated knowledge. Chen, et al. 2005 finds that giving creative problem-solving training to team members has positive impacts on team performance. Moreover, those individuals who receive brief “team spirit” training are able to design and facilitate virtual meetings by themselves and achieve better team performance than control groups.

  • Chen, Minder, Yiching Liou, Ching-Wen Wang, Yi-Wen Fan, and Yan-Ping Chi. “Team Spirit: Design, Implementation, and Evaluation of a Web-Based Group Decision Support System.” Decision Support Systems 43.4 (2005): 1186–1202.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.dss.2005.07.008Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that giving creative problem-solving training to team members had positive impacts on team performance. Moreover, those individuals who received brief “Team Spirit” training were able to design and facilitate virtual meetings by themselves and achieved better team performance than control groups.

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  • Sole, Deborah, and Amy Edmondson. “Situated Knowledge and Learning in Dispersed Teams.” British Journal of Management 13.S2 (2002): S17–S34.

    DOI: 10.1111/1467-8551.13.s2.3Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that, although virtual teams can easily access and use unique locale-specific knowledge resources to resolve problems that arise in those same locales, they encountered difficulties in uncovering and sharing situated knowledge (i.e., knowledge embedded in the work practices of a particular organizational site).

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Conflict Management

The final process subfactor is conflict management. The authors of Paul, et al. 2004 conducted an experiment in India and the United States, finding that a collaborative conflict management style positively affects satisfaction with the decision-making process, perceived decision quality, and perceived participation of the virtual teams, but that the collaborative conflict style is not significantly associated with group heterogeneity. Some authors have found mitigating factors that influence conflict management. For example, Paul, et al. 2005 concludes that more-individualistic groups have lower levels of collaborative conflict management. Moreover, the authors found that cultural diversity moderated the relationship between collaborative conflict and performance, such that the effects are stronger for culturally heterogeneous than for homogeneous groups. Moreover, Kankanhalli, et al. 2007 shows that large volumes of electronic communication and lack of immediacy of feedback in asynchronous media can contribute to task conflict, and that the relationship between task conflict and team performance is likely to be contingent on task complexity, conflict attribution, and the conflict resolution tactic. Montoya-Weiss, et al. 2001 (cited under Global Virtual Team Outputs: Performance) finds that GVTs are more able to manage conflict when they incorporate formal coordinating and scheduling mechanisms supported by communication technologies that help team members contribute at different points in time; certain conflict-handling strategies (competition, collaboration) are positively related to virtual team performance, while others (avoidance, compromise) are negatively related. Introducing a formal, structured plan for managing team time and activities weakens the negative effects of avoidance and compromise on virtual team performance.

  • Kankanhalli, Atreyi, Bernard C. Y. Tan, and Kwok-Kee Wei. “Conflict and Performance in Global Virtual Teams.” Journal of Management Information Systems 23.3 (2007): 237–274.

    DOI: 10.2753/MIS0742-1222230309Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that the influence of relationship conflict on performance may depend on task interdependence and conflict resolution approach, and that the conflict resolution approach may be determined by the nature of the team’s cultural diversity.

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  • Paul, Souren, Imad M. Samarah, Priya Seetharaman, and Peter P. Mykytyn Jr. “An Empirical Investigation of Collaborative Conflict Management Style in Group Support System-Based Global Virtual Teams.” Journal of Management Information Systems 21.3 (2005): 185–222.

    DOI: 10.1080/07421222.2004.11045809Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that more-individualistic groups had lower levels of collaborative conflict management. Additionally, cultural diversity moderated the relationship between collaborative conflict and performance such that the effects were stronger for culturally heterogeneous than for homogeneous groups.

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  • Paul, Souren, Priya Seetharaman, Imad M. Samarah, and Peter P. Mykytyn Jr. “Impact of Heterogeneity and Collaborative Conflict Management Style on the Performance of Synchronous Global Virtual Teams.” Information & Management 41.3 (2004): 303–321.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0378-7206(03)00076-4Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that collaborative conflict management style positively affected satisfaction with the decision-making process, perceived decision quality, and perceived participation of the virtual teams, but collaborative conflict style was not significantly associated with group heterogeneity.

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  • Sarker, Saonee, Suprateek Sarker, Darren B. Nicholson, and Kshiti D. Joshi. “Knowledge Transfer in Virtual Systems Development Teams: An Exploratory Study of Four Key Enablers.” IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication 48.2 (2005): 201–218.

    DOI: 10.1109/TPC.2005.849650Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors developed and validated a measure of virtual team trust with five subfactors: unit grouping, reputation categorization, physical appearance / behavior-based stereotyping, message-based stereotyping, and technology-related stereotyping.

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Global Virtual Team Outputs

This section is organized using the input–emergent states–process–outcome (IEPO) framework and focuses on outputs, the “O” of IEPO. Outputs include Performance and Attitudinal factors. The performance factor comprises the subfactors of productivity or effectiveness, learning, innovation, and ideas. The attitudinal factor encompasses commitment, satisfaction, team organizational citizenship behavior, and viability.

Performance

The first subfactor of performance is team effectiveness or productivity. Many of the studies mentioned elsewhere in this article exhibit the relationship between culture and team effectiveness, performance, or productivity. For example, in general, Montoya-Weiss, et al. 2001; Maznevski and Chudoba 2000 (cited under Coordination: Temporal); and Ely and Thomas 2001 contend that global virtual teams (GVTs) are more effective when they contain formal temporal coordinating mechanisms, develop temporal rhythms around periods of high interdependence, and have an integration-and-learning perspective. In addition, Lurey and Raisinghani 2001 establishes that teams’ processes and team members’ relations are strongly positively related to team performance and team member satisfaction; selection procedures and executive leadership styles are moderately associated; and design process, other internal group dynamics, and additional external support mechanisms are only weakly related. Crisp and Jarvenpaa 2013 explores how performance setting and monitoring performance norms enable swift and latter trust, which has an impact on team performance. Contrary to some of this extant research, Malhotra and Majchrzak 2014 finds that the positive association between exclusive ICT use and team performance depends on team composition and the nature of the task being performed. The second subfactor of performance is learning. Griffith, et al. 2003 finds that the use of searchable archives, video on demand, and full-text search of video on demand and attending face-to-face community-of-practice meetings are positively related to knowledge attainment in virtual environments. Bosch-Sijtsema 2007 shows in this qualitative case study that virtual team members bring widely different expectations to the team because of their heterogeneous organizational and cultural backgrounds, have little history of previously working together, and have different experiences of working in teams. Despite these varied circumstances, the author found an increase in individual learning. The third subfactor is innovation, or creativity and ideas. Malhotra, et al. 2001 examines how an interorganizational virtual team was able to produce radical innovation, and the authors identify several leadership practices for managing successful virtual teams: establish virtual team strategy initially, encourage the use of knowledge management/collaborative tools, and restructure work without changing core creative needs. A study on idea generation, Gallupe, et al. 1992 indicates that participants in brainstorming studies perceive less production blocking, have less evaluation apprehension, and are more satisfied when using electronic versus face-to-face brainstorming. Last, Leung and Wang 2015 argues that cultural diversity may diminish team creativity through the negative social processes it engenders and ICT-based communication and task characteristics weakens this relationship.

  • Bosch-Sijtsema, Petra. “The Impact of Individual Expectations and Expectation Conflict on Virtual Teams.” Group and Organization Management 32.2 (2007): 358–388.

    DOI: 10.1177/1059601106286881Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Authors found that, compared to face-to-face teams, virtual team members bring widely different expectations to the team because of their heterogeneous organizational and cultural backgrounds, have little history of previously working together, and have different experiences of working in teams. Expectation mismatches led to motivational problems, dissatisfaction, and lower performance in these teams, but they did result in more individual learning.

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  • Crisp, C. Brad, and Sirkka L. Jarvenpaa. “Swift Trust in Global Virtual Teams: Trusting Beliefs and Normative Actions.” Journal of Personnel Psychology 12.1 (2013): 45–56.

    DOI: 10.1027/1866-5888/a000075Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    In a longitudinal quasi-experimental study of sixty-eight temporary virtual teams with no face-to-face interaction, the authors found that setting and monitoring performance norms enable early trusting beliefs and increase late trusting beliefs and consequently team performance in virtual teams.

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  • Ely, Robin J., and David A. Thomas. “Cultural Diversity at Work: The Effects of Diversity Perspectives on Work Group Processes and Outcomes.” Administrative Science Quarterly 46.2 (2001): 229–273.

    DOI: 10.2307/2667087Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Work group processes are affected by the perspective of diversity held by the culturally diverse work group, with work groups with an integration-and-learning perspective having the highest work group functioning. The relationship between the perspective held and work group processes is mediated by quality of work group relations, feeling valued and respected, and the significance of one’s own racial identity at work.

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  • Gallupe, R. Brent, Alan R. Dennis, William H. Cooper, Joseph S. Valacich, Lana M. Bastianutti, and Jay F. Nunamaker. “Electronic Brainstorming and Group Size.” Academy of Management Journal 35.2 (1992): 350–369.

    DOI: 10.2307/256377Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that participants in brainstorming studies perceived less production blocking, had less evaluation apprehension, and were more satisfied when using electronic—as opposed to face-to-face—brainstorming.

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  • Griffith, Terri L., John E. Sawyer, and Margaret A. Neale. “Virtualness and Knowledge in Teams: Managing the Love Triangle of Organizations, Individuals, and Information Technology.” MIS Quarterly 27.2 (2003): 265–287.

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    The authors found that the use of searchable archives, video on demand, and full-text search of video on demand and attending face-to-face community-of-practice meetings are positively related to knowledge attainment in virtual teams.

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  • Leung, Kwok, and Jie Wang. “Social Processes and Team Creativity in Multicultural Teams: A Socio-technical Framework.” Journal of Organizational Behavior 36.7 (2015): 1008–1025.

    DOI: 10.1002/job.2021Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Drawing from the socio-technical framework, this theoretical paper argues that (1) cultural diversity may suppress team creativity through the negative social processes it engenders, and (2) this negative effect may be weakened based on the ICT-based communication and task characteristics.

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  • Lurey, Jeremy S., and Mahesh S. Raisinghani. “An Empirical Study of Best Practices in Virtual Teams.” Information & Management 38.8 (2001): 523–544.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0378-7206(01)00074-XSave Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that teams’ processes and team members’ relations were strongly positively related to team performance and team member satisfaction; selection procedures and executive leadership styles were moderately associated; and design process, other internal group dynamics, and additional external support mechanisms were only weakly related.

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  • Malhotra, Arvind, Ann Majchrzak, Robert Carman, and Vern Lott. “Radical Innovation without Collocation: A Case Study at Boeing-Rocketdyne.” MIS Quarterly 25.2 (2001): 229–249.

    DOI: 10.2307/3250930Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors examined how an interorganizational virtual team was able to produce radical innovation. Furthermore, they identified several leadership practices for managing successful virtual teams: establish virtual team strategy initially, encourage the use of knowledge management/collaborative tools, and restructure work without changing core creative needs.

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  • Malhotra, Arvind, and Ann Majchrzak. “Enhancing Performance of Geographically Distributed Teams through Targeted Use of Information and Communication Technologies.” Human Relations 67.4 (2014): 389–411.

    DOI: 10.1177/0018726713495284Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    Through multisource/multimethod analyses on a sample of fifty-four geographically dispersed teams, the authors reveal, contrary to extant research, that the positive association between exclusive ICT use and team performance depends on team composition and the nature of the task being performed.

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  • Montoya-Weiss, Mitzi M., Anne P. Massey, and Michael Song. “Getting It Together: Temporal Coordination and Conflict Management in Global Virtual Teams.” Academy of Management Journal 44.6 (2001): 1251–1262.

    DOI: 10.2307/3069399Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that GVTs are more able to manage conflict when they incorporate formal coordinating and scheduling mechanisms supported by communication technologies that help team members contribute at different points in time.

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Attitudinal

The first subfactor of attitudinal outcomes is commitment. One study found that certain cognitive styles affect GVT commitment: Workman, et al. 2003 concludes that individuals’ commitment to virtual teams is stronger when they have cognitive styles characterized as external (preferring group, rather than individual, problem solving), conservative (preferring structure, compliance with existing rules and procedures, familiarity, and minimal change), and global (having mental representations that have thin or fuzzy boundaries). In addition, the authors found that the relationships both between external and conservative cognitive styles and commitment to virtual teams are stronger when individuals report using richer, rather than leaner, communication media. The second subfactor of attitudinal outcomes is satisfaction. Bosch-Sijtsema 2007 discovers that organizational and cultural expectation mismatches lead to motivational problems, dissatisfaction, and lower performance in teams. A personality-related study, Lee-Kelley 2006 finds that compared to face-to-face teams, a negative relationship exists between role conflict and job satisfaction for those individuals who rate high on internal locus of control. Morris, et al. 2002 shows that user satisfaction and trust are positively related to job satisfaction in virtual teams.

  • Bosch-Sijtsema, Petra. “The Impact of Individual Expectations and Expectation Conflict on Virtual Teams.” Group and Organization Management 32.2 (2007): 358–388.

    DOI: 10.1177/1059601106286881Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The author found that, compared to face-to-face teams, virtual teams’ members bring widely different expectations to the team because of their heterogeneous organizational and cultural backgrounds, have little history of previously working together, and have different experiences of working in teams. Expectation mismatches led to, among other things, dissatisfaction and lower performance in these teams.

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  • Lee-Kelley, Liz. “Locus of Control and Attitudes to Working in Virtual Teams.” International Journal of Project Management 24.3 (2006): 234–243.

    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijproman.2006.01.003Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The author found, compared to face-to-face teams, a negative relationship between role conflict and job satisfaction for those individuals who rated high on internal locus of control.

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  • Morris, Steven A., Thomas E. Marshall, and R. Kelly Rainer Jr. “Impact of User Satisfaction and Trust on Virtual Team Members.” Information Resources Management Journal 15.2 (2002): 22–30.

    DOI: 10.4018/irmj.2002040103Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that user satisfaction and trust are positively related to job satisfaction in virtual teams.

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  • Workman, Michael, William Kahnweiler, and William Bommer. “The Effects of Cognitive Style and Media Richness on Commitment to Telework and Virtual Teams.” In Special Issue on Technology and Careers. Journal of Vocational Behavior 63.2 (2003): 199–219.

    DOI: 10.1016/S0001-8791(03)00041-1Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

    The authors found that individuals’ commitment to virtual teams was stronger when they had cognitive styles characterized as external, conservative, and global. The relationships both between external and conservative cognitive styles and commitment to virtual teams were stronger when individuals reported using richer, rather than leaner, communication media.

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