Collaboration Time Influences Information-Sharing at Work

Journal article


Moser, KS and Kaemmer, J (2017). Collaboration Time Influences Information-Sharing at Work. Team Performance Management.
AuthorsMoser, KS and Kaemmer, J
Abstract

Purpose Different length of collaboration with colleagues at work is a central feature of modern working life, and even more so in a work environment that is increasingly project focused and knowledge-intensive. Despite its practical importance there is little research on how the perceived costs and benefits in an information-sharing dilemma might change depending on collaboration length. Based on a social dilemma framework it is hypothesised that anticipated length of collaboration time will significantly influence the motivation to collaborate. Design An experimental scenario study (N=87) compared the willingness to work collaboratively, share information and help the partner in a long-term (two academic terms) vs. a short-term (one week) condition. Findings At first somewhat counterintuitively, participants were more helpful in the short-term, and insisted more on equality and disengaged more from a defecting partner - but not the project - in the long-term condition. People appear to focus more on the immediate task in short-term collaborations ― even at cost ― because the outcome is more important than the relationship, and more on setting norms for equality and reciprocity in long-term collaborations to avoid future exploitation. Practical implications The findings help understanding the motivation and the partner and task perception under different time conditions and support managing teams in an increasingly project-oriented work environment with changing partners and varying time frames. Originality To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first paper investigating the influence of anticipated collaboration time in information-sharing dilemmas.

Keywordstime; information-sharing; cooperation; social dilemma; reciprocity; helping; work dyads; Business And Management
Year2017
JournalTeam Performance Management
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Ltd.
ISSN1352-7592
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1108/TPM-10-2016-0043
Publication dates
Print28 Nov 2017
Publication process dates
Deposited24 May 2017
Accepted14 May 2017
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY-NC 4.0
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https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/86wq3

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