Matching Facilitator Style and Agenda Structure in Group Support Systems: Effects on Participant Satisfaction and Group Output Quality
Todd J. Hostager (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, USA), Scott W. Lester (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, USA), Kathryn J. Ready (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, USA) and Marilyn Bergmann (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, USA)
Copyright: © 2004
A 2x2 factorial controlled experiment was conducted to examine the effects of agenda structure and facilitator style on participant satisfaction and output quality in meetings employing group support systems (GSS). Participants were assigned to one of four conditions: (1) relationship style/relationship agenda; (2) task style/task agenda; (3) task style/relationship agenda; and (4) relationship style/task agenda. As expected, satisfaction with the agenda, process, and outcomes was higher in the matched style/agenda conditions (1) and (2). Surprisingly, satisfaction with facilitation and task was higher in the relationship style conditions (1) and (4). Two expert raters were used to judge the quality of group outputs. As predicted, groups in the matched conditions produced higher quality outputs than groups in the mismatched conditions. Implications of the study for practice and future research are provided. This study is part of an ongoing program of research into the effectiveness of GSS as a tool for conducting meetings and other forms of group activity.