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The Role of a Shared Mental Model of Collaboration Technology in Facilitating Knowledge Work in Virtual Teams

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2 Author(s)
Dominic M. Thomas ; Goizueta Business School ; Robert P. Bostrom

We studied 52 field examples interaction breakdown in information technology project virtual teams and actions leaders took to fix it using information and communication technologies (ICTs). We found that leader success related to aspects of shared mental model (SMM) theory, particularly the equipment/technology (e/t) model. Our literature review shows that prior research has missed the critical impact of this SMM due to controls often placed on technology and context to make studies manageable. We found a solution to this dilemma by applying critical incident technique (CIT). We were able to study successful IT project managers in the field, sampling occasions when they engaged in technology facilitation. We found that these VT leaders need knowledge of ICTs in three areas: functional understanding of features, future prediction knowledge, and application/usefulness knowledge. We present the analysis of our interview data, the CIT methodology we employed, five propositions, and implications for practitioners and researchers

Published in:

System Sciences, 2007. HICSS 2007. 40th Annual Hawaii International Conference on

Date of Conference:

Jan. 2007