The double-edged sword of task conflict: Its impact on team performance

Hojin Bang1, Jong Gyu Park2
1Department of Business Administration, Jeju National University, Republic of Korea
2Department of Learning and Performance Systems, The Pennsylvania State University, United States
Cite this article:  Bang, H., & Park, J. (2015). The double-edged sword of task conflict: Its impact on team performance. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 43, 715-728.

Volume 43 Issue 5 | e4454 | Published: June 2015 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2015.43.5.715

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We investigated the relationship between task conflict and team performance, taking into account the interaction effects of job demand. Participants were 5,579 employees in 153 teams at a South Korean manufacturing company. We found a statistically significant curvilinear relationship between task conflict and actual team performance; however, the relationship between task conflict and perceived team performance was negative and linear. Through response surface analysis, we also found that task conflict positively predicted actual team performance when job demand was high, whereas it had a negative effect when job demand was low. We performed response surface analysis of the results of polynomial regression, because we had speculated that those relationships could be essentially curvilinear. However, results showed no interaction effect of task conflict and job demand in predicting perceived team performance. Thus, task conflict may function as a double-edged sword in terms of team performance.

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