Decision-making groups often exchange and integrate distributed information to a lesser extent than is desirable for high-quality decisions. One important reason for this lies in group members' understanding of the decision task-their task representations-specifically the extent to which they understand the importance of exchange and integration of information. The authors hypothesized that a group's development of a (shared) understanding of the information elaboration requirements of their task is influenced by collective reflection on the task. When not all group members initially realize the importance of information elaboration, team reflexivity increases the degree to which the group understands the importance of information elaboration. In an experiment, the authors showed that team reflection fostered the development of task representations emphasizing information elaboration and subsequent information elaboration and decision quality. When all members initially already held representations emphasizing information elaboration, team reflection promoted elaboration and performance to a lesser degree.

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Group Dynamics: theory, research, and practice
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

van Ginkel, W., Tindale, R. S., & van Knippenberg, D. (2009). Team Reflexivity, Development of Shared Task Representations, and the Use of Distributed Information in Group Decision Making. Group Dynamics: theory, research, and practice, 13(4), 265–280. doi:10.1037/a0016045