The motivational drivers of leadership emergence in multiteam systems
Carter, Dorothy Ruth
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Many of the most important organizational and societal challenges are beyond the capacity of single teams, working in isolation, and instead, require the collaborative efforts of Multiteam Systems (MTSs). Limiting MTS effectiveness, however, all members of these systems are not always motivated to achieve superordinate goals. This dissertation emphasizes that MTSs are often comprised of teams with unique, and sometimes competing, team priorities. In a large-scale MTS laboratory study, I consider the impact of team priorities on the networked patterns of leadership that are likely to arise across team boundaries. Using a between-team manipulation, I experimentally manipulated the degree to which component teams were induced to prioritize the superordinate goal of the system and evaluated the impact of this manipulation on the emergence of leadership claiming and granting processes across teams. Results suggest that the priorities emphasized within component teams in MTSs have significant ramifications for members’ participation in critical processes of leadership between teams. Relative to teams that did not prioritize the superordinate goal, members of these teams were more likely to reference the superordinate goal in their interteam communications and more likely to claim and be granted leadership influence by members of other teams. However, those MTS members who prioritize superordinate goal were also the most likely to grant others’ leadership attempts, potentially allowing members with conflicting priorities to unduly influence the system. Further, I uncover patterns of communication related to leadership granting and identify patterns of leadership granting related to MTS performance.