Examining the asymmetrical effects of goal faultlines in groups: A categorization-elaboration approach

Aleksander P.J. Ellis, Ke Michael Mai, Jessica Siegel Christian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to use the categorization-elaboration model (CEM) to examine the asymmetrical effects of goal faultlines in groups, which are present when hypothetical dividing lines are created on the basis of different performance goals, splitting the group into subgroups. On the basis of the CEM, we expected groups with goal faultlines to exhibit higher levels of creative task performance than (a) groups with specific, difficult goals and (b) groups with do-your-best goals. We expected the benefits of goal faultlines to be due to increases in reflective reframing, which occurs when group members build on each other's ideas by shifting to alternate frames. However, we expected groups with goal faultlines to exhibit lower levels of routine task performance than (a) groups with do-your-best goals and (b) groups with specific, difficult goals, due to increased perceptions of loafing. Results from 87 groups generally supported our hypothesized model. Implications are discussed as well as possible limitations and directions for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)948-961
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Volume98
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2013

Keywords

  • Faultlines
  • Goal-setting
  • Groups

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology

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