Management Seminar - Professor Natalie Allen

Seminar Room 10.039, Level 10 the Spot, 198 Berkeley Street

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Dr Tine Koehler

tkoehler@unimelb.edu.au

T: 03 9035 5852

PRESENTER: Professor Natalie Allen (Western University, Canada)  
TOPIC: The “Romance of Teams”

Abstract:
Teams are very widely used in the workplace.  And our belief that team-based work leads to high-level performance seems strong.  Several years ago, Tracy Hecht and I described what we saw as a mismatch between beliefs in the performance value of teamwork and the empirical evidence supporting the performance superiority of teams over solo-based work.  Specifically, it seemed that our belief in the superior performance of teams  is somewhat at odds with the evidence.  Finding this puzzling, we offered a psychological explanation for this “romantic” view of teams, and we discussed the implications that it might have for organizations, teams, and individuals.  In this presentation, I plan to outline the general argument, summarize the relevant evidence, and associated controversy and to offer some suggestions regarding how workplaces and managers might avoid some of the potential pitfalls associated with our “romantic” view of teams.

Bio:
Natalie Allen, PhD is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at Western University in London, Canada, Director of The TeamWork Lab at Western, and an associate faculty member in Western’s Centre for Planetary Science and Exploration.  Natalie teaches organizational psychology and conducts research on the psychology of teams/teamwork and work attitudes. She is a Fellow of the Society for Industrial & Organizational Psychology and of the Canadian Psychological Association and a former Associate Editor of the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology.  Natalie’s work appears in numerous academic and practitioner publications and she is the co-author, with John Meyer, of an award-winning book Commitment in the Workplace. Natalie’s current team research focuses primarily on (a) methodological issues associated the study of teams, (b) the effects of team composition, processes, and contextual factors on team functioning and (c) psychological issues associated with space-related teams.

RSVPs are not necessary.