Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1-2016

Abstract

The existing literature on diverse teams suggests that diversity is both helpful to teams in making more information available and encouraging creativity and damaging to teams in reducing cohesion and information sharing. Thus the extant literature suggests that diversity within teams is a double-edged sword that leads to both positive and negative effects simultaneously. This literature has not, however, fully embraced the increasing calls in the broader groups literature to take account of time in understanding how groups function [e.g. Cronin, M. A., Weingart, L. R., & Todorova, G. (2011). Dynamics in groups: Are we there yet? The Academy of Management Annals, 5, 571–612]. We review the literature on diverse teams employing this lens to develop a dynamic perspective that takes account of the timing and flow of diversity's effects. Our review suggests that diversity in groups has different short-term and long-term effects in ways that are not fully captured by the currently dominant double-edged sword metaphor. We identify an emerging perspective that suggests a tropical depression metaphor—that has the potential, over time, to develop either into a dangerous hurricane or diffuse into a rainstorm that gives way to sunshine, as more apt to capture the dynamic effects of diversity in teams. We conclude by outlining an agenda for redirecting future research on diverse teams using this more dynamic perspective.

Discipline

Organizational Behavior and Theory | Strategic Management Policy

Research Areas

Strategy and Organisation

Publication

Academy of Management Annals

Volume

10

Issue

1

First Page

453

Last Page

493

ISSN

1941-6520

Identifier

10.1080/19416520.2016.1120973

Publisher

Academy of Management / Taylor & Francis (Routledge): SSH Titles - no Open Select

Copyright Owner and License

Authors

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Additional URL

http://doi.org/10.1080/19416520.2016.1120973

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