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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/29882

Title: Membership Change: A Network Perspective
Authors: Stuart, Helen Colleen
Advisor: Berdahl, Jennifer
Casciaro, Tiziana
Department: Management
Keywords: Teams
Membership Change
Social Networks
Issue Date: 31-Aug-2011
Abstract: This dissertation theorizes about why a team’s network structure might affect team performance immediately and over time when membership changes. I propose that the low substitutability of a central team member immediately disrupts the structure of interactions between remaining members and leaves the team without an important resource that is relied upon to facilitate team process. This performance loss is expected to decay as time elapses because the saliency of the event creates the focus and urgency required for the team to implement widespread systemic change. Dense interaction and task redundancy among core members in a centralized structure is expected to help offset this performance loss both immediately and over time. I examine the effect of network structure on initial team performance (performance immediately following member exit and entry) and performance over time (the rate of performance change following exit and entry) in professional hockey teams experiencing membership change due to player injury. Results show that the departure of a central player has a significant and negative effect on a team’s immediate performance, but the centrality of the absent member has a curvilinear effect on team performance over time. Teams that lost a central player experienced a drop in performance immediately after that player’s exit; but subsequently demonstrated an improvement in performance over time. Teams that lost a peripheral player experienced a more positive performance trajectory over time when compared with their performance before the exit, while the performance of teams that lost a mid-central player remains constant over time. While team centralization had no influence on initial team performance, over time it dramatically altered team outcomes such that, regardless of the departing player’s network position, teams with a centralized structure improved over time, whereas decentralized teams performed more poorly over time.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/29882
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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