The purpose of this study was to provide an analysis of the relationship between psychological safety, team efficacy, transactive memory system (TMS) development, and learning behaviors of virtual teams. Background for this study was provided by four existing theoretical models of team learning. This study utilized correlation analysis and multiple regression analysis methods to help establish that there is a relationship between psychological safety, team efficacy, TMS, and virtual team learning behaviors. A population that consisted of a variety of teams made up of members of a leading North American plastic pipe trade association were given an electronic survey. Responses from 124 individuals representing 47 individual member companies and 23 distinct teams were gathered. The constructs measured in the survey are conceptually meaningful at the team level. Data were gathered from individual team members to assess team-level variables that were aggregated at that level. The results of the study indicate that the team interpersonal beliefs of psychological safety and team efficacy were positively associated with team learning behaviors. In addition, TMS was found to be positively associated with team learning behavior, and was moderately correlated to psychological safety and team efficacy. The main research hypothesis of this study was that the relationship between team psychological safety, team efficacy, and team learning behaviors are moderated by TMS. The hypothesized model that placed TMS as a moderator did show a slight increase in the variation explained in virtual team learning behaviors versus the model with no moderating effect included. This result may indicate a potential moderating effect of TMS, but is not strong enough to make an unequivocal statement. However, the study found a high degree of correlation between TMS and virtual team learning behaviors, which may indicate that TMS plays an important role in team learning. This study provided quantitative data and analysis of the interpersonal factors driving team learning behavior, and the development of TMS for virtual teams in an organizational setting. It is believed that information specific to the relationship between the team-level constructs will allow HRD practitioners and researchers to further develop learning in this critical organizational form.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. May 2016. Major: Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development. Advisor: Alexandre Ardichvili. 1 computer file (PDF); vi, 107 pages.
The effects of psychological safety, team efficacy, and transactive memory system development on team learning behavior in virtual work teams.
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