The power of "we": effects of psychological collectivism on team performance over time

J Appl Psychol. 2011 Mar;96(2):247-62. doi: 10.1037/a0020929.


We examined the influences of different facets of psychological collectivism (Preference, Reliance, Concern, Norm Acceptance, and Goal Priority) on team functioning at 3 different performance depictions: initial team performance, end-state team performance, and team performance change over time. We also tested the extent to which team-member exchange moderated the relationships between facets of psychological collectivism and performance change over time. Results from multilevel growth modeling of 66 teams (N = 264) engaged in a business simulation revealed differential effects across facets of psychological collectivism and across different performance measurements. Whereas facets concerned with affiliation (Preference and Concern) were positively related to initial team performance, reliance was negatively related to initial team performance. Goal Priority was a strong predictor of end-state performance. Team-member exchange moderated the relationship between performance change and 3 of the 5 facets of psychological collectivism (Preference, Reliance, Norm Acceptance). Implications for team composition and team training are discussed.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Communication
  • Cooperative Behavior*
  • Female
  • Goals
  • Group Processes*
  • Humans
  • Leadership
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Models, Organizational
  • Models, Psychological
  • Motivation
  • Organizational Culture
  • Power, Psychological*
  • Students / psychology
  • Task Performance and Analysis*
  • Young Adult