Team Microdynamics: Toward an Organizing Approach to Teamwork

Stephen E. Humphrey, Federico Aime

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

180 Scopus citations


Team researchers in the field of organizational behavior (OB) seem to be increasingly aware of the need to embrace the organizing nature of teams. In this article, we outline the limitations of the prevailing static collectivist explanations in team research and suggest how an increased emphasis on a microdynamics-oriented approach that takes into account the essentially relational and organizing nature of teams can provide new insights to our understanding of teamwork. We argue that a multilevel, multi-theoretical, and multi-period framework may help enhance our understanding of teams. To show the advancements of the field in this sense, we review the OB literature on teams and highlight exemplars of research that have started to emphasize the microdynamic nature of teams consistent with this general framework, and their contributions to our understanding of team phenomena. We conclude by outlining the opportunities and needs for a microdynamic insight into team and teamwork, providing guidance for scholars who are interested in adding a microdynamic perspective into their models of teamwork.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)443-503
Number of pages61
JournalAcademy of Management Annals
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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