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Leadership and Member Voice in Action Teams: Test of a Dynamic Phase Model

The Journal of applied psychology | 25 Aug 2017

CIC Farh and G Chen
Voice is an important way that members contribute to effective team functioning. And yet, the existing literature provides divergent guidance as to how leaders can promote member voice in action teams-a dynamic team context where eliciting voice may be difficult, due to different task demands encountered in the preparation and action phases of task performance, among members who may have little history of working together. Drawing on the employee voice and team leadership literatures, we focus on three leader behaviors-directing, coaching, and supporting-and employ a functional leadership perspective to assess whether certain leader behaviors enhance voice in one phase of the performance episode versus the other. We also assess whether these leadership-voice relationships are further contingent on team members' prior familiarity with one another. Observation and survey data from 105 surgical team episodes revealed that leader directing promoted voice in both the preparation and action phases. Coaching also facilitated voice in both phases, especially in the action phase for more familiar teams. Surprisingly, supporting did not enhance voice in either phase, and in fact exhibited negative effects on voice in the preparation phase of more familiar teams. Theoretical and practical implications around how leaders can elicit voice in action teams are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record
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Leader, Test, Fiedler contingency model, Hero, Management, Coaching, Team, Leadership
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