This paper aims to identify the relationship pattern between intra-team trust and team innovation and the influence of moderating variable task complexity on the relationship. It also describes why and how intra-team trust is a unique antecedent for team innovation, as too much or too less influence of the variable can have detrimental effects on team innovation.
The paper uses survey research. The data were collected by distributing questionnaires to work teams. After the individual-level data were aggregated into team-level data, hierarchical linier regression was conducted to test the hypotheses.
The paper provides empirical findings that (1) intra-team trust and team innovation have a curvilinear relationship pattern, (2) task complexity does not influence curvilinear relationship (3) and the increase in task complexity improves the possibility of team innovation to occur.
The paper has two limitations. First, as intra-team trust was also represented by aggregated perception of team members’ trust for outside parties (not only members’ perception for their teams), the future research is expected to include the representation in the instrument. Second, recent research studies have shown that contextual factor of task interdependence, instead of task complexity, also had an effect on the relationship pattern between intra-team trust and team performance (i.e. team innovation). Therefore, for future researchers, it is suggested that the use of task interdependence would be an alternative moderating variable on the relationship between intra-team trust and team innovation.
The paper discusses the strategy to enhance team innovation by revealing strategies to manage interplay among intra-team trust, team complexity and the desired team innovation.
The paper identifies the need to conduct empirical research on how an interplay among intra-team trust, task complexity and team innovation could be enabled.
Hendarsjah, H., Susanto, E., Lies Sugianto, B.R. and Handoko, T.H. (2019), "Curvilinear relationship between intra-team trust and team innovation: the moderating role of task complexity", Journal of Asia Business Studies, Vol. 13 No. 3, pp. 472-487. https://doi.org/10.1108/JABS-12-2016-0180
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