"Inter-group Coordination: Strategic and Tactical Leadership in Teams of Teams"



This presentation will discuss a joint research project conducted by Michigan State University and the Air University that focus on leadership and coordination issues in teams of teams. The research examines over 300 14-person teams that consist of three distinct sub-teams (operations, Intelligence, and command) and explores how shared mental models, transactive memory systems and performance in teams of teams is affected by alternative a priori planning models and variance in post hoc decision editing at the tactical and strategic level. Research participants are 4.500 captains in the U.S. Air Force engaging in a three-day simulation as part of a five week course in leadership development. The results suggest that many of the variables that promote performance within teams, such as empowerment and flexibility, create coordination and performance failures between teams at the next higher level of analysis. The limits of current research paradigms that only study small teams (i.e., four and five person teams) that are not embedded in larger systems is discussed, along with implications for future research and practice.
Contact information:
Dicea Jansen