Understanding orientations to participation: overcoming status differences to foster engagement in global teams
Global teams, participation, social interaction, status difference, virtual teams
A key challenge facing global teams lies in overcoming status differences in order to elicit participation and input from all members. This study extends prior research–which has focused largely on individual-level factors such as language, culture, and location that create status differences that fracture teams and reduce participation–by examining members’ underlying orientations to participation, team practices that encourage these, and their impacts on global team effectiveness. We draw on a rich multilevel, mixed-method data set consisting of 45 in-depth interviews and a comprehensive analysis of conference calls from 9 global teams in a multinational integrated mining, minerals processing, and manufacturing organization. We identified three orientations to participation (Help, Learn, and Engage). Team-level analysis revealed team practices that encouraged certain orientations to participation to emerge, in particular relationships across sites and input solicitation. Only the Engage orientation was positively associated with overall global team effectiveness. Implications of these findings are discussed.
European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology
Gibbs, Jennifer L.; Gibson, Cristina B.; Grushina, Svetlana V.; and Dunlop, Patrick D., "Understanding orientations to participation: overcoming status differences to foster engagement in global teams" (2021). Pepperdine University, Faculty Open Access Publications. Paper 21.