Team conflict dynamics: Implications of a dyadic view of conflict for team performance

Stephen E. Humphrey, Federico Aime, Lily Cushenbery, Aaron D. Hill, Joshua Fairchild

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper endeavored to resolve some of the inconsistencies in the intrateam conflict literature by proposing both that conflict can be conceptualized as an expression of dyadic interactions and that the study of conflict requires a dynamic perspective. We propose that the presence of relationship conflict in even a single dyad within a team can hinder information exchange, whereas the level of information exchange in teams can unlock task conflict. We argue that task and relationship conflict, due to this unfolding process, shift from an initially significant positive relationship to a null relationship over time. We further propose that task conflict and dyadic task conflict asymmetry combine to produce high performance in the teams. Our study of 219 individuals organized in 458 dyads within 51 teams – studied over 8 weeks during the development of an entrepreneurial venture – provided support for our theoretical model. Our theory and findings demonstrate that the connection between task and relationship conflict is more complex that previously proposed, with task and relationship conflict differentiating over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-70
Number of pages13
JournalOrganizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
Volume142
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2017

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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