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Article
Publication date: 9 September 2014

Yuanqiong He, Xiu-Hao Ding and Kunpeng Yang

Teamwork is important for innovation, but it often incurs conflicts. Previous literature has reported inconsistent relationships between conflicts and team performance…

Abstract

Purpose

Teamwork is important for innovation, but it often incurs conflicts. Previous literature has reported inconsistent relationships between conflicts and team performance. The purpose of this paper is to clarify this relationship and explore how to improve team innovation using conflict management styles.

Design/methodology/approach

This study collects data in China and the survey covering 436 participants from 126 project teams. Then, structure equation model by AMOS and moderated regression analyses are used for hypotheses testing.

Findings

This study finds that cognitive conflict and affective conflict have positive and negative effects on team innovation separately, and cognitive conflict positively affects affective conflict, with the total effect of cognitive conflict on team innovation being negative. Moreover, this study suggests that cooperative conflict management styles and dominating style (one of competitive conflict management styles) moderate the relationship between cognitive conflict and affective conflict negatively and positively.

Research limitations/implications

First, this study did not consider features of organizations as control variables. Future research can advance in this direction. Second, the data were collected from a single marketing innovation program. Further research might use more diversified teams to test the hypotheses.

Practical implications

Firms should realize that cognitive conflict promotes team innovation directly, but it also harms team innovation through affective conflict. Then, cooperative conflict management styles are effective in weakening the relationship between cognitive conflict and affective conflict.

Originality/value

This study fulfills an identified need to clarify the relationship between conflict and team performance, as well as how conflict management styles moderating the relationship between cognitive conflict and affective conflict.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 52 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2007

Satyanarayana Parayitam and Robert S. Dooley

Research on strategic decision making has over‐emphasized the importance of cognitive conflict because of its potential benefits. Recent research documented that, apart…

Abstract

Purpose

Research on strategic decision making has over‐emphasized the importance of cognitive conflict because of its potential benefits. Recent research documented that, apart from the benefits, cognitive conflict leads to affective conflict. Taking information processing perspective, the present study seeks to argue that the benefits of cognitive conflict can be stimulated by the cognition‐based trust, while the interplay between cognitive conflict and affective conflict can be influenced by affect‐based trust. The present study therefore aims to demonstrate the divergent roles of the perceived trustworthiness as potential moderators in strategic decision‐making teams.

Design/methodology/approach

Using structured survey instrument, multi‐informant data was collected from CEOs and senior executives of 109 US hospitals. After performing confirmatory factor analysis of the measures used, the data was analyzed using hierarchical regression techniques to analyze divergent roles of cognition‐ and affect‐based trust as moderators in the relationship between conflict and decision outcomes.

Findings

Results showed that cognition‐based trust is the key to fortify the benefits of cognitive conflict while affect‐based trust is the panacea for the ills of cognitive conflict.

Research limitations/implications

The sample consisted of hospitals in healthcare industry only. Self‐report measures may have some inherent social desirability bias.

Practical implications

This study contributes to both practicing managers as well as to strategic management literature. This study suggests that trust between the executives involved in strategic decision‐making process plays an important role in enhancing decision quality. It is therefore suggested that CEOs and administrators engage the executives who have both cognition‐ and affect‐based trust with each other to have successful decision outcomes.

Originality/value

Though the sample in the present study focuses only on healthcare industry, to the extent strategic decision‐making process is similar in other industries, the findings can be generalizable across other industries.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2001

Mark Mortensen and Pamela J. Hinds

Though geographically distributed teams are rapidly increasing in prevalence, empirical research examining the effect of distance on group process has not kept pace. In a…

Abstract

Though geographically distributed teams are rapidly increasing in prevalence, empirical research examining the effect of distance on group process has not kept pace. In a study of 24 product development teams located within five companies, we attempt to bridge the gap between research and practice by comparing the amount of affective and task conflict reported in collocated versus geographically distributed teams. We further examine how conflict is impacted by shared team identity, cultural heterogeneity, and reliance on technology for communication. As hypothesized, shared team identity was associated with less task conflict within distributed, but not collocated teams. Similar effects were found for affective conflict, suggesting that a shared identity may help distributed teams to better manage conflict. Our results also suggest more task conflict on teams that rely heavily on technology to mediate their communications. In examining performance, we found some support for our hypothesis that conflict would be more detrimental for distributed than collocated teams.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

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Article
Publication date: 13 February 2017

Bhaskar Prasad and Paulina Junni

The purpose of this study is to understand the impact of top management team (TMT) processes on firm innovativeness. Firm innovativeness is critical for organizational…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to understand the impact of top management team (TMT) processes on firm innovativeness. Firm innovativeness is critical for organizational survival. Yet, the authors’ understanding about the key determinants of firm innovativeness is limited, particularly concerning the role of TMT dynamics. Drawing on upper echelon’s theory, the authors develop and test hypotheses concerning the influence of two TMT processes, namely affective conflict and cognitive conflict, on firm innovativeness. They also explore the boundary conditions of TMT dynamics by examining the moderating effect of environmental uncertainty on the relationship between TMT conflict (affective and cognitive conflict) and firm innovativeness.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors collected survey-based data from TMT members in 171 information technology organizations based in India. They used multiple regression analyses to test the study hypotheses.

Findings

The empirical findings indicate that TMT affective conflict is negatively associated with firm innovativeness, whereas TMT cognitive conflict has a negative curvilinear relationship with it. Both relationships are stronger in firms operating in environments characterized by a high degree of uncertainty.

Originality/value

This study highlights the role of TMT conflict in the pursuit of firm innovativeness. Significantly, the study shows that both TMT affective conflict and cognitive conflict can affect firm innovativeness. However, their effectiveness is contingent on environmental uncertainty. This contributes to the firm innovation literature by clarifying how specific types of TMT conflict influence firm innovativeness in different environmental conditions.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 28 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

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Article
Publication date: 11 June 2018

Hector R. Flores, Xueting Jiang and Charles C. Manz

The aim of this paper is to present a model of the moderating role of emotional self-leadership on the cognitive conflictaffective conflict relationship and their effect…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to present a model of the moderating role of emotional self-leadership on the cognitive conflictaffective conflict relationship and their effect on work team decision quality.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws upon extant theoretical and empirical research on the conflict, leadership and emotions literature works to argue for the role of emotional self-leadership as a boundary condition of the intra-team conflict–work team decision quality relationship.

Findings

Key to understanding why cognitive conflict sometimes leads to improved decision quality and sometimes it does not is the role of emotional self-leadership. Through emotional self-leadership, team members can actively anticipate, guide and focus their emotional responses to cognitive conflict and reduce their experience of affective conflict, improving team decision quality.

Research limitations/implications

Identifying and explaining the moderating role of emotional self-leadership represents important progress for reframing emotion regulation and emotional intelligence into a new theoretical lens that may yield more meaningful insights into self-managed teams’ research. If empirically supported, this moderating effect would help explain the contradictory results obtained in prior empirical studies.

Practical implications

Practitioners can diminish or avoid the negative effect of the type of conflict that lowers work team decision quality and preserve the positive effect of the type of conflict that improves work team decision quality by identifying and implementing ways to improve a work team’s level of collective emotional self-leadership.

Originality/value

This paper extends the emotions, leadership and conflict literature works into the current research on self-directed work teams’ effectiveness by bringing attention to the moderating role of emotional self-leadership and calls for empirical research on this subject.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2005

Francisco J. Medina, Lourdes Munduate, Miguel A. Dorado, Inés Martínez and José M. Guerra

Seeks to evaluate the link between task and relationship conflict, and their influence on some employees' affective reactions such as satisfaction, wellbeing, and…

Abstract

Purpose

Seeks to evaluate the link between task and relationship conflict, and their influence on some employees' affective reactions such as satisfaction, wellbeing, and propensity to leave a job; and to analyse the mediated and moderated role of relationship conflict.

Design/methodology/approach

The study involved 169 employees from six service organizations (hotels) in Andalusia (Spain). A questionnaire was used containing different measures: task and relationship conflict, wellbeing, job satisfaction, and propensity to leave the job.

Findings

The two types of conflict have different consequences. Data show that relationship conflict is negatively associated with affective reactions, while task conflict does not relate directly to affective reactions in a predictable way; relationship conflict has a positive influence on the desire to leave the current job, while task conflict does not affect it negatively; the interactive effect of relationships and task conflict shows that this interaction contributes substantially to predict the propensity to leave the current job; and relationship conflict mediates in the link between task conflict and affective reactions.

Research limitations/implications

A high level of task conflict may backfire by boosting relationship conflict as well, thus having a negative effect on affective reactions. Thus some conclusions can be drawn with a view to improving conflict management in teams. First an attempt must be made to understand the type of conflict that is taking place. Second, managers should encourage open discussion of task‐related issues. Third, special attention should be paid to the level of each conflict because of its interactive effects on some affective outcomes. Thus, in spite of the generally beneficial effects associated with task conflict, the intensification of task‐related conflict may backfire when interacting with dysfunctional affective‐dissent.

Originality/value

Serves too analyze the mediated and moderated role of relationship conflict and to test the role of types of conflict on affective reactions such as wellbeing and propensity to leave the job.

Details

Journal of Managerial Psychology, vol. 20 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-3946

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Article
Publication date: 25 October 2011

Danielle Cooper and Warren Watson

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of two moderators of the relationships between affective conflict and cognitive conflict and team performance: the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of two moderators of the relationships between affective conflict and cognitive conflict and team performance: the cultural context and the level of team‐oriented behaviors.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey questionnaires were administered to a sample of 143 Mexico‐ and US‐based learning teams. Regression analysis was used to test hypotheses.

Findings

In both cultural contexts, cognitive conflict more positively affected performance when team‐oriented behaviors were high. This effect was stronger for Mexican teams. Affective conflict more negatively affected performance in Mexican teams than US teams, particularly when team‐oriented behaviors were high.

Practical implications

The results have implications for managing conflict to improve team effectiveness in the USA and in Mexico and for training managers who work across these cultural contexts.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates the joint role of the cultural context and team behaviors in how conflict influences team performance.

Details

Cross Cultural Management: An International Journal, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-7606

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Article
Publication date: 13 July 2007

Guofeng Wang, Runtian Jing and Andreas Klossek

The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between demographic characteristics, job stress, and cognitive and affective conflict faced by Chinese top…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between demographic characteristics, job stress, and cognitive and affective conflict faced by Chinese top managers and how this conflict is resolved over multiple rounds of conflict situations.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire was designed and submitted to Chinese top managers of firms located in Sichuan Province, PRC. Besides Likert‐type questions concerning demographic characteristics, job stress, and both types of conflict, contextual anchorage method was used to let top managers rank the conflict resolution styles they would prefer for solving a given situation of conflict.

Findings

Data were submitted to hierarchical regression analysis. It was found that age is in negative relation with job stress and that the higher the education level of top managers, the more cognitive conflict they will experience. In turn, the more cognitive conflict, the more affective conflict will be experienced. In addition, it was found that job stress is in positive association with cognitive conflict. Finally and most importantly, the findings indicated that Chinese top managers are inclined to using integrating to handle conflict. This seems to be generally inconsistent with traditional Chinese culture.

Originality/value

The paper accounted for respective calls that proposed to focus on the antecedent conditions of cognitive and affective conflict. Therefore, a framework containing important antecedent factors of conflict was proposed. As a first attempt, it integrated the relationship between job stress and conflict. Most importantly, and also as a first attempt, however, this study sought to identify the conflict resolution styles Chinese top managers applied over multiple rounds of conflict situations, whereas findings additionally differentiate between affective and cognitive types of conflict.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Dvora Ben Sasson and Anit Somech

Despite growing research on school aggression, significant gaps remain in the authors’ knowledge of team aggression, since most studies have mainly explored aggression on…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite growing research on school aggression, significant gaps remain in the authors’ knowledge of team aggression, since most studies have mainly explored aggression on the part of students. The purpose of this paper is to focus on understanding the phenomenon of workplace aggression in school teams. Specifically, the purpose of the study was to examine whether team affective conflict in school teams mediates the relationship between team injustice climate (distributive, procedural, and interpersonal injustice climate) and team aggression.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from a survey of 43 school teams at different schools using questionnaires.

Findings

Results showed that team affective conflict played a role in fully mediating the relationship of team procedural and interpersonal injustice climate to team aggression.

Research limitations/implications

The present results empirically support the notion that workplace aggression can be considered not only an individual phenomenon but also a team phenomenon. Furthermore, it highlights the significance of organizational factors in predicting this phenomenon. The study should serve to encourage principals to reduce the level of team aggression and develop a supportive climate characterized by fair procedures and respect.

Originality/value

A review of the literature also reveals that little investigative effort has been made by scholars to examine aggression on the part of teachers. Evidence for this can be seen in the scarcity of publications on this topic. The current literature’s call to address this issue in schools and at the team level (Fox and Stallworth, 2010) stimulated the present study by highlighting the importance of exploring the contextual factors, rather than the individual ones, responsible for school team aggression.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 53 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 12 August 2019

Haiyan Guo, Lianying Zhang, Xiaoyan Huo and Guannan Xi

This research aims to comprehensively investigate when and how cognitive conflict benefits team innovation in cross-functional project teams (CFPTs), by exploring the…

Abstract

Purpose

This research aims to comprehensively investigate when and how cognitive conflict benefits team innovation in cross-functional project teams (CFPTs), by exploring the moderating role of knowledge leadership and dual mediation mechanisms of elaboration of task-related information/knowledge and affective conflict.

Design/methodology/approach

All hypotheses have been empirically tested by using structural equation model to analyze the quantitative data from a questionnaire survey covering 73 CFPTs in China.

Findings

Results indicate that knowledge leadership positively moderates the relationship between cognitive conflict and CFPT innovation. This moderating effect is directly or indirectly revealed by the dual mediating roles of task-related information/knowledge elaboration and affective conflict, which are two processes manifesting whether cognitive conflict can or cannot be incorporated into team innovation.

Research limitations/implications

Despite the external validity of results limited by convenient sampling method, the findings offer implications for promoting CFPT innovation. This can be achieved by developing competent knowledge leadership into team sensegiver, dissent reconciler and facilitator to accentuate benefits of cognitive conflict in information/knowledge elaboration and attenuate the likelihood of escalating to affective conflict.

Originality/value

This study advances the understanding of why cognitive conflict has an equivocal effect on team innovation in the context of CFPT by originally revealing how leaders’ role in information/knowledge management acts as a contingency and suggesting the dual mediating mechanisms that reflect the contingent impact. Project-based teams or organizations, characterized by cognitive clashes, can enhance innovation performance by shaping the meaningfulness of information/knowledge activities triggered by cognitive conflict.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 30 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

Keywords

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