Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Effects of Communication Media and Team Composition in Virtual and Face-to-Face Teams
by Graebner, Raluca Ioana, Ph.D., The George Washington University, 2012, 179; 3486953
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation explores the effects of communication media and team personality composition on team interactions and outcomes. Three hundred undergraduate students, assigned to teams of three, worked on a decision-making task that had an ideal solution. Teams were equally divided into two communication conditions: face-to-face and virtual (in which teams used a synchronous communication program for all their interactions). No significant differences were found between the two conditions in terms of teams’ measured performance, perceived performance, satisfaction, or conflict. However, results underline a complex impact of communication medium on team relationships: task conflict was significantly negatively related to team synergy and uber-synergy in the virtual condition, but not in the face-to-face condition. Moreover, the higher the team's level of neuroticism, the more task conflict the team perceived in face-to-face teams, but not virtually, where the relationship was reversed. Regardless of the communication condition, task conflict in a team negatively impacted perceived performance, satisfaction with the decision-making process, and cohesion. Teams higher in extraversion were more satisfied with the decision-making process than teams lower in extraversion, a relationship partially explained by an increase in participation in the task. Limitations, directions for further research, and implications for practitioners are discussed.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Offermann, Lynn R.
Commitee: Behrend, Tara, Hampel, Alexa, Nielsen, Tjai M., Olsen, Nils
School: The George Washington University
Department: Organizational Sciences and Communication (I/O Psyc)
School Location: United States -- District of Columbia
Source: DAI-A 73/03, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Psychology, Occupational psychology, Organizational behavior
Keywords: Communication media, Conflicts, Face-to-face teams, Personality, Team composition, Virtual teams
Publication Number: 3486953
ISBN: 978-1-267-05452-4
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