December 15, 2021
A study presented by Jean-François Harvey, Associate Professor in the Department of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, was chosen as the Best Conference Paper at the annual Interdisciplinary Network for Group Research (INGRoup) Conference.
The international event brings together scholars from all over the world who share an interest in studying groups and teams.
The paper by Professor Harvey and his co-author, Johnathan R. Cromwell, of the University of San Francisco, was lauded both for the quality of the methods and analysis and for the original and innovative conclusions relating to team problem solving.
The authors wanted to understand what factors lead work teams to successfully complete innovation projects in an organization. They studied several hundred work teams in a specific multinational corporation, in the context of an innovation competition held every year by the employer. They used questionnaires to survey the teams at different times over a 9-month period and created a quantitative measurement method to be used to track changes over time.
They found, in particular, that a team’s vision of its objective when the project is launched does not ultimately play a decisive role in its success. More important is that this vision becomes clearer with time. They noted that teams with more ambiguous objectives at the start, but who defined them more specifically as the project progressed, performed better than the others.
Professors Harvey and Cromwell will continue to collect data from employees of this multinational over the months and years to come, to pursue their research in this field.
There are also plans to publish this paper in a scientific journal.
Jean-François Harvey joined the Department of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at HEC Montréal after completing 2 years of postdoctoral studies at the Harvard Business School.
Today he holds a research professorship in organizational learning, where he uses both qualitative and quantitative methodologies to better understand how individuals, teams and organizations learn and adapt, in particular in uncertain and ambiguous contexts.
He has received many awards and distinctions for his scientific papers and for his book, Extreme Teaming, co-authored with Amy Edmondson and translated into Korean and Danish.