Within the dynamic globalized operating environment, organizations are increasingly relying on virtual teams to solve their most difficult problems, leverage their expertise and expand their presence. The use of virtual teams by organizations continues to increase greatly as the technologies supporting them evolve. Despite improvements in technology, the problem remains that virtual team performance is continually challenged by loss of knowledge resulting from ineffective coordination and communication, and lack of timely information sharing. The purpose of this qualitative collective case study was to explore the perceptions and experiences of globally-distributed, cross-organizational, virtual team members. Mitigating virtual team challenges and improving performance, with the use of knowledge management, was explored. Interviews were conducted with 21 members from three virtual teams, comprising seven persons per team. Teams were globally-distributed, cross-organizational, and constituted a broad range of expertise and organizations, both public and private. Each team represented a case or unit of analysis. Cross-case analysis revealed that, to operate efficiently, virtual teams require a deliberate knowledge management program in concert with technology, face-to-face meetings, and informal networking. Tacit knowledge can be captured, retained, and exploited through knowledge transfer and conversion, enabled by an established knowledge management program. Knowledge management can improve team performance by improving context and meaning, training, continuity, and organizational responsiveness. Recommendations are provided for senior managers and virtual team leaders to mitigate virtual team challenges.
|Advisor:||Melaragno, Ralph J.|
|School:||University of Phoenix|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Management, Organizational behavior, Information science|
|Keywords:||Collaborative leadership, Distributed team, Knowledge management, Organizational behavior, Transformational leadership, Virtual team|
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