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As virtual teams become more and more important in organizations, understanding how to improve virtual team relational development and meeting outcomes is vital to project success. The objective of this study was to investigate how the dialogue technique that facilitated building of shared understanding in virtual teams can be used to enhance virtual team relational development and decision outcomes in a Chinese cultural context. The results from an experiment demonstrate that the adopted dialogue technique can indeed help team members develop their team relations and enhance their perceived team meeting outcomes. Video-conferencing virtual teams with shared mental models may be engaged as effectively as traditional face-to-face teams. Moreover, this study reveals that the dialogue technique can enhance face-to-face team outcomes. Therefore, the findings of this study have both theoretical and practical implications for helping teams develop shared understanding of effective communication and enhance decision-making outcomes in the Chinese cultural context.
Date of Publication: March 2009