Date of Award

Fall 1994

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Psychology

Program/Concentration

Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Committee Director

Terry L. Dickinson

Committee Member

Albert S. Glickman

Committee Member

Debra A. Major

Committee Member

Bruce McAfee

Abstract

As the world increases in complexity, teams have assumed greater importance in the work place as a method used by organizations to cope with global competition and technological progress. Thus, an understanding of team processes and outcomes has become critical to individuals who study and work in organizations. The purpose of this investigation was to undertake a construct validation study of a model of the processes that underlie teamwork. This investigation was accomplished in two parts. A first study was conducted in order to determine the construct validity of scales that were developed to measure the nine teamwork components: task structure, team leadership, team orientation, communication, monitoring, feedback, backup, coordination, and performance. The Teamwork Components Questionnaire was administered to 150 individuals who were members of various types of teams. Structural equation modeling (i.e., LISREL) provided evidence of the validity of the proposed measurement models, and the results of confirmatory and exploratory factor analyses suggested revisions to further improve the validity of the questionnaire. In a second study, the revised questionnaire was administered to 135 teams, and LISREL was used again to determine the structural relationship among the teamwork components. Additional analyses served to test several specific hypotheses involving task structure and communication as independent variables. Unlike the first study, the second study used aggregated data to reflect the scores of entire teams. Empirical support was found for several of the proposed structural relationships and several of the hypotheses. In general, the most important findings concerned the pervasive effects of communication, considerate leadership, and team orientation on the remaining components. Contrary to what had been predicted, task structure was not found to exert a significant effect on communication. Practical implications of the research were suggested involving the design of training, the sophistication of technology, and the enhancement of the Teamwork Components Questionnaire. Theoretical implications related to the issues of aggregation and the multidimensionality of the constructs. It was concluded that the importance of teamwork cannot be overemphasized in today's increasingly sophisticated society. This research may serve as the first step toward a more comprehensive approach to studying teams.

DOI

10.25777/f43a-p426

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