The dual control systems of agile teams: exploring knowledge management issues
2014 (English)In: IFKAD 2014: 9th International Forum on Knowledge Asset Dynamics, 2014, 1907-1931 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
Purpose - This paper aims to contribute to the exploration of micro-foundations for innovation in autonomous team-based firms. It describes how different types of management control systems influence the innovation performance of teams through an extensive field study of a large scale agile implementation. It reveals the moderating role played by different kinds of managerial control systems and by perceived time pressure on teams in the relationship between a team's absorptive capacity and its innovation performance. Design/methodology/approach - A total of 44 individual semi-structured interviews were used to collect data over three separate data collection stages conducted from August to November 2013. All data were triangulated with the qualitative content analysis results of free comments from 121 people, covering different agile roles in the same organizations as above, and embedded in a survey performed in August 2013. Due to the complexity of the topic and the lack of prior studies investigating the effect of agile implementation on team learning and innovation capabilities, an abductive research approach (Peirce, 1931) was selected as a suitable method. Originality/value - The empirical results indicate that a team's beliefs on the importance of learning strongly influence its self-regulated learning behaviours. They represent the configuration of AC meta-routines underlying the concept of absorptive capacity (Lewin et al., 2011) at the team-level, conducive to teams' exploration activities. Moreover, the antecedents for a team's exploitative and exploratory innovation activities are presented and two types of managerial controls for driving exploitative innovation activities are identified. Additionally, team-level absorptive capacity was analysed, since it is a less explored, but important construct, leading to a team's exploitative product innovation. Practical implications - This study's findings have a number of implications for practice. The results imply that autonomous team-based organizations may be better off not using one single standard control system to manage all their teams. In fact, beyond securing a team's access to knowledge, management needs to provide teams with differentiated means to develop necessary competencies and capacities for understanding, assimilating and using the knowledge they retrieve. In addition, management should influence a team's beliefs by valuing the tasks requiring innovation and transmitting sustainable values to teams through their mission and vision statements.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. 1907-1931 p.
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-171925ISI: 000357262302019ISBN: 978-88-96687-04-8OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-171925DiVA: diva2:845029
9th International Forum on Knowledge Asset Dynamics (IFKAD), JUN 11-13, 2014, Matera, ITALY
QC 201508102015-08-102015-08-102015-08-10Bibliographically approved