Group Affective Tone and Team Performance: A Week-Level Study in Project Teams

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Paulsen, Hilko; Klonek, Florian E.; Schneider, Kurt; Kauffeld, Simone: Group Affective Tone and Team Performance: A Week-Level Study in Project Teams. In: Frontiers in Communication 1 (2016), 7. DOI:

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Sum total of downloads: 69

Group affective tone is an emergent state that can be shared by group members during interdependent tasks. Groups can experience positive group affective tone (PGAT), a shared feeling of e.g., excitement, enthusiasm, or activation as well as negative group affective tone (NGAT), a shared feeling of e.g., distress, anxiety, and hostility. So far, previous cross-sectional research suggests that PGAT and NGAT are related to team performance outcomes. However, little is known about how the dynamic and fluctuating group affective states are related to team performance over an extended period of time. Therefore, the current study investigated the relation between PGAT, NGAT, and performance over the course of 34 software engineering projects. We hypothesized that PGAT is positively related to team performance, whereas NGAT is negatively related to team performance. Based on the punctuated equilibrium model and the feeling-as-information-theory we expected that these associations become stronger in the second half of the project. Using week level design with 165 participants in 34 software engineering teams, we repeatedly assessed PGAT, NGAT, and team performance over 14 weeks. Data were analyzed using multilevel structural equation modeling. As expected, PGAT was positively related to team performance, whereas NGAT was negatively related to team performance – between teams over the course of the projects as well as within teams over time. More importantly, the weekly relationships were stronger in the second half of the project. Our study indicates that weekly variations in group affective tone are more relevant after projects reach a temporal midpoint. We discuss theoretical and practical implications for project teams.
License of this version: CC BY 4.0 Unported
Document Type: Article
Publishing status: publishedVersion
Issue Date: 2016
Appears in Collections:Fakultät für Elektrotechnik und Informatik

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pos. country downloads
total perc.
1 image of flag of Germany Germany 36 52.17%
2 image of flag of United States United States 12 17.39%
3 image of flag of China China 11 15.94%
4 image of flag of No geo information available No geo information available 2 2.90%
5 image of flag of Taiwan Taiwan 2 2.90%
6 image of flag of Russian Federation Russian Federation 1 1.45%
7 image of flag of Netherlands Netherlands 1 1.45%
8 image of flag of India India 1 1.45%
9 image of flag of Greece Greece 1 1.45%
10 image of flag of Canada Canada 1 1.45%
    other countries 1 1.45%

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