Constructing the Team: The Antecedents and Effects of Membership Model Divergence

64 Pages Posted: 7 Jan 2012 Last revised: 9 Mar 2013

See all articles by Mark Mortensen

Mark Mortensen

INSEAD - Organisational Behaviour

Date Written: March 08, 2013

Abstract

Scholars have established that team membership has wide-ranging effects on cognition, dynamics, processes and performance. Underlying that scholarship is the assumption that team membership – who is and who is not a team member – is straightforward, unambiguous and agreed upon by all members. Contrary to this assumption, I posit that mental models of membership increasingly diverge within teams as a result of changing environmental conditions. I build on the literatures on membership and on shared mental models to explore such “membership model divergence”. In a study of 38 formally defined software and product development teams, I test a model of structural and emergent drivers of membership model divergence, and examine its effect on performance operating through team-level cognition. I use the findings of this study to explore its implications for both management theory and managerial practice.

Keywords: Teams, Membership, Composition, Boundaries, Perception, Mental Models, Project-based Work

Suggested Citation

Mortensen, Mark, Constructing the Team: The Antecedents and Effects of Membership Model Divergence (March 08, 2013). INSEAD Working Paper No. 2013/37/OB. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1980689 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1980689

Mark Mortensen (Contact Author)

INSEAD - Organisational Behaviour ( email )

Boulevard de Constance
77305 Fontainebleau Cedex
France

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
98
Abstract Views
737
rank
270,887
PlumX Metrics