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The Influence of Culture on Team Dynamics

Team Dynamics Over Time

ISBN: 978-1-78635-404-4, eISBN: 978-1-78635-403-7

ISSN: 1534-0856

Publication date: 4 August 2017



To summarize and build on research that explores the influence of culture on team dynamics, particularly over time. Specifically, we explore culture and teams from a dynamic perspective by providing a framework for understanding both how culture influences team dynamics over time, and where interventions should be targeted at different points to maximize the potential benefits of cultural diversity.


Drawing from a prominent model of team development (Kozlowski, Gully, Nason, & Smith, 1999), we provide mechanisms through which culture exerts an influence, as well as the practical approaches that will be best suited for mitigating potential negative effects at different points in time.


We focus on the following phases: team formation, task compilation, role compilation, team compilation, as well as team maintenance. At first, surface-level characteristics and subgroup formation should be closely monitored along with interventions to develop a group identity when teams are being formed. Later on, emergent states (e.g., trust, conflict) can come to the forefront as team members can develop multiple memberships or yet be resistant to performing in an adaptive manner.

Research limitations/implications

We identify key avenues for future research to serve as a foundation for those studying the cultural diversity within teams via temporal lens, including the role of context and going beyond Hofstede’s cultural dimensions.


Albeit research has started to accumulate regarding how culture influences teams through conflict, communication, trust, cohesion, and creativity, this chapter goes beyond current development to address when different cultural elements influence team dynamics.



Feitosa, J., Solis, L. and Grossman, R. (2017), "The Influence of Culture on Team Dynamics", Team Dynamics Over Time (Research on Managing Groups and Teams, Vol. 18), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 209-230.



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