Virtual and Face-to-Face Teamwork Differences in Culturally Homogeneous and Heterogeneous Teams

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Abstract

Performance on a decision-making task and cohesion were examined in dyadic (two-person) teams. A total of 118 university students in the United States and Japan participated in the study and were placed in either homogeneous (American-American or Asian-Asian) or heterogeneous (American-Asian) teams, based on whether they were raised in the United States or in an Asian country. Teams worked either face-to-face or via videoconferencing (i.e., virtual teams) and performed a hidden profile task simulating a personnel selection process (i.e., ranking candidates). American-American teams and American-Asian teams outperformed Asian-Asian teams regardless of whether they worked face-to-face or virtually. Team cohesion results mirrored the performance results. The findings suggest that individuals from Asian cultures may require more time to form a cohesive and high-performing team.

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