Does cultural diversity matter for team performance in MNCs? An analysis of conflict, communication, social integration, creativity and satisfactionSornsawan obsuwan, Deepak Chandrashekar, Sascha Kraus, Alexander Brem and Ricarda Bouncken
Journal: International Journal of Innovation Management
Abstract: Team performance is key in each organisation. Hence, cultural effects in teams are a relevant matter of subject clarifying the ambiguous findings from previous research. With this background, the authors investigate how the macro-constructs of conflict, communication effectiveness, social integration, creativity and satisfaction interact with cultural diversity on team performance in an environment characterised by a largely homogeneous and ethnic workforce. They test their hypotheses on a sample of firms in Thailand.
Their results indicate that creativity and satisfaction have a significant positive impact on team performance whereas cultural diversity has a significant positive impact on influencing conflict in a team-based environment. However, cultural diversity has no significant impact on communication effectiveness and social integration, and it has no significant impact on team performance.
The key theoretical contributions from this study are that cultural diversity can contribute to conflict even in a team composition that is seemingly cohesive and homogeneous in nature. Further, the study establishes that creativity and satisfaction have a positive effect on team performance even in the context of a homogeneous and ethnically majority-based team. For the practitioners, the results of the study indicate that initial actions need to be taken by the leaders of multicultural teams as they create teams to avoid the initial pitfalls due to conflict.Read more