This research investigates a new type of team that is becoming prevalent in global work settings, namely self-managing multicultural teams. We argue that challenges that arise from cultural diversity in teams are exacerbated when teams are leaderless, undermining performance. A longitudinal study of multicultural master of business administration study teams found that in the early stage of team formation, teams with a low average level of, but moderate degree of variance in, uncertainty avoidance performed best. Four months post formation, however, teams with a high average level of relationship orientation performed better than teams with a low average level of relationship orientation. Furthermore, a moderate degree of variance in relationship orientation among team members produced better team performance than a low or high degree of variance. These findings suggest that different cultural value orientations exert different patterns of effects on the performance of self-managing multicultural teams, depending on the stage of team formation. We discuss implications for the composition of self-managing multicultural teams and its influence on team processes and performance.
self-managing team, multicultural team, cultural value, uncertainty avoidance, relationship orientation, team performance
Business | Organizational Behavior and Theory
Organisational Behaviour and Human Resources
Journal of Organizational Behavior
CHENG, Chi-Ying; CHUA, Roy Y. J.; MORRIS, Michael W.; and LEE, Leonard.
Finding the right mix: How the composition of self-managing multicultural teams' cultural value orientation influences performance over time. (2012). Journal of Organizational Behavior. 33, (3), 389-411. Research Collection Lee Kong Chian School Of Business.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/lkcsb_research/3926
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