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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|4669||2013||11 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||10050 کلمه|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Volume 121, Issue 2, July 2013, Pages 183–193
Diversity can enhance as well as disrupt team performance. Diversity beliefs and climates may play an important moderating role in these effects, but it is unclear what form these should take to promote the positive effects of diversity. Addressing this question in an integration of research in team cognition and diversity, we advance the concept of diversity mindsets, defined as team members’ mental representations of team diversity. These mindsets capture diversity-related goals and associated procedural implications for goal achievement. We develop theory about the accuracy, sharedness, and awareness of sharedness of mindsets as moderators of the diversity-performance relationship. We also identify the determinants of these aspects of diversity mindsets. Finally, we discuss the implications of our model for the management of diversity.
As the work force diversifies in cultural background and gender and companies become more reliant on cross-functional teams, team diversity is on the agenda of research and practice more than ever before. Diversity poses complex challenges, however, because it can have positive as well as negative effects on team performance (Jackson and Joshi, 2011 and Williams and O’Reilly, 1998). This has led to the conclusion that the key challenge for diversity research is to identify the contingencies of these effects (van Knippenberg & Schippers, 2007). The processes underlying the positive and negative influences of diversity are well-documented: diversity may be an asset as an informational resource, and a liability as a source of interpersonal tension and intergroup biases (van Knippenberg, De Dreu, & Homan, 2004). Identifying the factors that determine which of these processes dominate in a diverse group has proven to be challenging, however (e.g., Joshi & Roh, 2009). In this respect, a promising and recurrent theme is that diversity beliefs, attitudes, and climates can play an important moderating role in the effects of diversity on team performance (see Cox, 1993, Ely and Thomas, 2001, Jackson et al., 1992, Kossek and Zonia, 1993 and van Knippenberg and Haslam, 2003). Beliefs and climates that are more favorable towards diversity are proposed to lead to more positive effects of diversity, but what it means exactly to be favorable towards diversity is not clear. As Ely and Thomas (2001) conclude, different perspectives that are considered favorable towards diversity may diverge in the effects of diversity they produce. So, what form should diversity beliefs and climates take to strengthen the positive effects of diversity and weaken its negative effects? Current answers to this question seem to us to be vague or even wrong. To address this issue, we propose the concept of diversity mindsets in an integration and extension of diversity theory and theory in team cognition that emphasizes the importance of members’ mental representations of the team and its task(s) ( Cannon-Bowers et al., 1993 and Salas and Fiore, 2004). We define diversity mindsets as mental representations of team diversity. These capture diversity-related goals and associated procedural implications for goal achievement. Diversity mindsets capture members’ knowledge of their team’s diversity, of how this diversity might affect team processes and performance, and how diversity should be engaged. We propose three aspects of diversity mindsets that moderate the relationship between diversity and performance. They are accuracy (the extent to which goals and associated actions capture an understanding of diversity as an informational resource), sharedness (similarity in mindsets among members), and awareness of sharedness. Accuracy moderates the relationship between diversity and performance, and both sharedness and awareness of sharedness make this moderating influence stronger. And there are three related but conceptually distinct characteristics of mindset accuracy that co-determine the positive effects of mindsets. Those characteristics are promotion rather than prevention goals, exploration rather than exploitation goals, and team-specific understanding of diversity as an informational resource. For the development of accurate and shared mindsets, we point to the role of team leadership and identify contingencies that affect the impact of leadership on mindset development.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
The notion that diversity has performance benefits that can be realized by espousing the value in diversity holds great appeal, but it raises at least as many questions as it answers. In developing the concept of diversity mindsets, we hope to provide answers to several of these questions and move the field firmly beyond the current understanding of diversity beliefs and climates. Many of our propositions are as yet untested. The important next step is to complement the current conceptual analysis with empirical tests of our hypotheses. Because our model in its entirety has considerable complexity, it is important to note that a test of the complete model in a single study is neither feasible nor necessary. All other things being equal, each of our propositions should hold, and tests of the lower-order interactions implied by these propositions are meaningful tests of our analysis. In this respect, we would prioritize tests of the moderating influence of diversity mindset accuracy in the effect of team diversity on team performance, because this is at the core of our analysis. Key aspects of mindset accuracy could be operationalized in questionnaire measures as well as experimental manipulations, building on work that examines regulatory focus, exploration–exploitation, and team cognition (e.g., DeChurch and Mesmer-Magnus, 2010b, Moreland, 1999 and Wallace et al., 2009). Sharedness of mindsets may also by operationalized using questionnaire data (e.g., as standard deviation or rwg based on team member surveys) or through experimental manipulation (cf. van Ginkel et al., 2009). Awareness of sharedness could be operationalized in analogous ways (cf. van Ginkel & van Knippenberg, 2008). The added value of experimental research, beyond field research, is that the former can provide the causal evidence required for theory development. Experimental research also provides the opportunity to hold certain factors constant and thus allows for the test of elements of our analysis without having to resort to the test of higher-order interactions (e.g., varying awareness of sharedness, while keeping sharedness constant; cf. van Ginkel & van Knippenberg, 2008). Moreover, experimental manipulations provide more power for statistical tests of interactions than does survey research, and thus offer a more feasible alternative for tests of higher-order interactions, where these are desired (e.g., Kooij-de Bode et al., 2008). Field research, in contrast, is essential for exploring the longitudinal aspects of our propositions regarding the iterative process of team leadership in the development of diversity mindsets. In studying the role of leadership, research may build on earlier field and experimental work in team cognition, information elaboration, and reflexivity as outcomes of leadership (Marks et al., 2000, Schippers et al., 2008 and van Ginkel and van Knippenberg, 2012; cf. Hackman & Wageman, 2005a). Whereas this prior work did not fully cover the issues at stake, because it did not examine either diversity mindsets or diversity, it may indicate ways to operationalize the aspects of leadership that we have identified in our analysis. In a related vein, van Knippenberg et al. (2004) did not analyze team cognition or leadership, yet they did discuss the operationalization of several factors that we have identified as moderators of leadership’s effects on mindset development. So, their work may provide a starting point for future research on those contingencies. We have used cultural diversity to illustrate our analysis of diversity mindsets, because cultural diversity is exemplary of the “double-edged sword” of diversity. Following the categorization-elaboration model’s proposition that all diversity attributes have this double-edged quality (van Knippenberg et al., 2004), however, our analysis does not seem limited to any particular diversity attribute. Diversity mindsets, as we conceptualize them, are not only team-specific, but also attribute-specific, and the specifics of accurate mindsets may differ from one diversity attribute to another. Even so, the key characteristics of accurate mindsets that we have identified should hold across attributes. It will be important for future research to substantiate this point. We should be careful not to draw strong conclusions about practice before our analysis is supported by research. It is useful, however, to consider what those implications might be, because that speaks to the value of undertaking all the research necessary to test our model. Obviously, our analysis has implications for the kind of diversity cognition and climate that teams should strive to develop. If supported, the model would suggest that organizations do more than try to prevent unfairness and discrimination (Armstrong et al., 2010, Ely and Thomas, 2001 and van Knippenberg et al., 2013). They should also try to view diversity as an informational resource that promotes performance benefits (especially for exploration tasks) through a process of team information elaboration. In the development of such diversity mindsets, our model points to the importance of team leadership. We thus suggest a change in HR practices for leadership development – more attention should be given to developing leaders’ understanding of and efforts toward the development of accurate diversity mindsets. Our analysis of diversity mindsets as team-specific mental representations also has important implications for diversity training. Diversity training is perhaps the most popular intervention around, based on the notion that fostering an appreciation of (cultural) diversity is conducive to more positive diversity-related outcomes (e.g., Kossek and Lobel, 1996, Roberson et al., 2001 and Rynes and Rosen, 1995). Diversity training sessions are typically attended by selected individuals, who are urged to acquire a generalized appreciation of (cultural) diversity. It is rare for teams as a whole to acquire a team-specific understanding of diversity. Our analysis suggests that most diversity training, as currently practiced, will thus fail to improve the accuracy, sharedness, and awareness of sharedness of diversity mindsets (cf. Moreland, Levine, & Wingert, 1996). We thus extend an invitation to shift the focus of practice to people’s appreciation of diversity as something that should be understood and fostered in relationship to the actual diversity people work within their team. Moreover, efforts to develop such understanding should focus on the team collectively and not on individuals separated from their teams. The concept of diversity mindsets adds several layers to our understanding of what valuing diversity can and should mean. The conceptualization of diversity mindsets as team, task, and diversity attribute-specific mental representations of team diversity opens up new avenues for research on the role of team members’ diversity cognition in terms of its accuracy, sharedness, and awareness of sharedness. Combined with our analysis of the determinants of diversity mindsets, this may not only open up new directions for research, but also guide diversity training practices to help people benefit more from the potential inherent in diversity.