Building Trust in Globally Distributed Teams

Building Trust in Globally Distributed Teams

Julia Kotlarsky (University of Warwick, UK), Ilan Oshri (Erasmus University, The Netherlands) and Paul C. van Fenema (Netherlands Defense Academy, The Netherlands)
Copyright: © 2008 |Pages: 8
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-885-7.ch012
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Abstract

Smith and Blanck (2002) claim that “an effective team depends on open, effective communication, which in turn depends on trust among members. Thus, trust is the foundation, but it is also the very quality that is most difficult to build at a distance” (p.294). Trust is “the willingness of one person or group to relate to another in the belief that the other’s action will be beneficial rather than detrimental, even though this cannot be guaranteed” (Child, 2001, p.275).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Knowledge-based trust: Deals with the ability to predict the behaviour of the trustee based on prior performance (Husted, 1998). It relies on mutual confidence on the basis of mutual knowledge and common experience (Child, 2001).

Trust: Defined as the willingness of one person or group to relate to another in the belief that the other’s action will be beneficial rather than detrimental, even though this cannot be guaranteed (Child, 2001).

Social Ties: The relationships between remote counterparts, which can be either work-related ties (e.g., involve a person gathering the information, advice and resources necessary to accomplish a task), or expressive ties (e.g., friendship), which involve expressions of interpersonal solidarity (Umphress et al., 2003).

Globally Distributed Teams: Consist of professionals working together from different geographical locations to accomplish joint goals.

Swift Trust: Used for temporary teams whose experiences are formed around a common task for completion of which the team was formed (Jarvenpaa & Leidner, 1999).

Characteristic-Based Trust: Based on attributes (characteristics) identified in the other party (e.g., ethnic group, religious affiliation, age and/or role in an organisation) (Zucker, 1986; Husted, 1998).

Bonding: Associated with a strong personal relationship (friendship) and based on shared concepts, values and moral obligations and liking each other (Child, 2001).

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