Fr-SYM-2234-4 - Train Diverse Groups, Or Train Their Leaders? The Role Of Leader Learning Goal Orientation In Diversity Training Success

Diversity in work teams
vendredi 19 mai   09:00 AM à 10:00 AM (1 heure)
Teams and workgroups
Diversity in work teams
Train Diverse Groups, or Train Their Leaders? The Role of Leader Learning Goal Orientation in Diversity Training Success
C. Buengeler 1,*, A. Homan 2, R. Eckhoff, W. van Ginkel 3, S. Voelpel 4, E. Kearney 5
1Amsterdam Business School, 2University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, 3Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, Netherlands, 4Jacobs University, Bremen, 5University of Potsdam, Potsdam, Germany
Main Abstract Content: Purpose
It seems plausible that those who collaborate in diverse environments (e.g., the members of diverse teams) are the most suitable recipients of diversity training. Questioning this assumption, we examine a boundary condition favoring leaders over their teams as a training target. In particular, when leaders receive diversity training, teams should make better training use than when teams themselves receive it, but only if leader learning goal orientation is high.
In an experiment with 42 groups with varying degrees of educational diversity, we examined the effects of providing either three-person groups or their leaders with diversity training on salience and use of differences as well as performance on a group task.
Performance of educationally diverse teams was increased when leaders received the diversity training but only when their learning goal orientation was high; when it was low, training diverse teams was more beneficial. Salience and use of informational differences mediated this effect.
Whereas experimental designs help ensure internal validity, a field experiment is required to show generalizability of findings to organizational teams.
Research/Practical Implications
This research contributes to the literature on diversity training by uncovering two important, interrelated boundary conditions to its effectiveness. Practically, our study underlines the importance of conducting a person analysis in the context of a training-needs assessment to determine the most appropriate training target.
Despite the immense cost associated with organizational diversity training, its effectiveness is still uncertain. This study increases understanding of how to leverage diversity’s potential through training.


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