Journal of Business and Psychology

, Volume 32, Issue 6, pp 655–671 | Cite as

Reflection Toward Creativity: Team Reflexivity as a Linking Mechanism Between Team Goal Orientation and Team Creative Performance

  • Yuhyung ShinEmail author
  • Mihee Kim
  • Sang-Hoon Lee
Original Paper



This study aims at testing the mediating role of team reflexivity in the relationships between team learning, performance-prove, and performance-avoid goal orientations and team creative performance and assessing the relative importance of the three types of team goal orientation in team reflexivity and creative performance.


We conducted Study 1 on 68 student teams by using a two-wave time-lagged design. In Study 2, we carried out a cross-sectional field study on 108 intact work teams in diverse Korean companies.


Team learning goal orientation was significantly associated with team creative performance. While team learning and performance-prove goal orientations were equally influential in predicting team reflexivity, team performance-avoid goal orientation had no relationship with team reflexivity and creative performance. Team reflexivity mediated the relationships between team learning and performance-prove goal orientations and team creative performance.


By revealing that team learning and performance-prove goal orientations can contribute to team creative performance through the facilitation of team reflective process, this study provides practitioners with insight into critical antecedents and team process that are conducive to the creative performance of work teams.


This is one of the first studies to explore a mediating mechanism between team goal orientation and creative performance. This study attends to the role of team reflexivity as a key team-regulatory process that underlies the relationship between team goal orientation and team performance. Furthermore, the use of multiple studies in different contexts strengthens the robustness of the study findings.


Team goal orientation Team reflexivity Team creative performance 



This work was supported by the research fund of Hanyang University (HY-2016). We are grateful to Sabine Sonnentag and two anonymous reviewers for comments and feedback that greatly improved our manuscript.


  1. Alexander, L., & van Knippenberg, D. (2014). Teams in pursuit of radical innovation: A goal orientation perspective. Academy of Management Review, 39, 423–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Amabile, T. M. (1982). Children’s artistic creativity: Detrimental effects of competition in a field setting. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 8, 573–578.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Austin, J. T., & Vancouver, J. B. (1996). Goal constructs in psychology: Structure, process, and content. Psychological Bulletin, 120, 338–375.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Baer, M., & Oldham, G. R. (2006). The curvilinear relation between experienced creative time pressure and creativity: Moderating effect of openness to experience and support for creativity. Journal of Applied Psychology, 91, 963–970.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Baer, M., Vadera, A. K., Leenders, R. T., & Oldham, G. R. (2013). Intergroup competition as a double-edged sword: How sex composition regulates the effects of competition on group creativity. Organization Science, 25, 892–908.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bliese, P. D. (1998). Team size, ICC values, team-level correlations: A simulation. Organizational Research Methods, 1, 355–373.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bliese, P. D. (2000). Within-group agreement, non-independence, and reliability: Implications for data aggregation and analysis. In K. J. Klein & S. W. J. Kozlowski (Eds.), Multilevel theory, research, and methods in organizations (pp. 349–381). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  8. Brislin, R. W. (1986). The wording and translation of research instruments. In W. J. Lonner & J. W. Berry (Eds.), Field methods in cross-cultural research (pp. 137–164). Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  9. Bunderson, J. S., & Sutcliffe, K. M. (2003). Management team learning orientation and business unit performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 88, 552–560.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Button, S. B., Mathieu, J. E., & Zajac, D. M. (1996). Goal orientation in organizational research: A conceptual and empirical foundation. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 67, 26–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Carter, S. M., & West, M. A. (1998). Reflexivity, effectiveness, and mental health in BBC-TV production teams. Small Group Research, 29, 583–601.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Chan, D. (1998). Functional relations among constructs in the same content domain at different level of analysis: A typology of composition models. Journal of Applied Psychology, 83, 234–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Chen, G., & Kanfer, R. (2006). Toward a systems theory of motivated behavior in work teams. Research in Organizational Behavior, 27, 223–267.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. De Jong, B. A., & Elfring, T. (2010). How does trust affect the performance of ongoing teams? The mediating role of reflexivity, monitoring, and effort. Academy of Management Journal, 53, 535–549.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. DeShon, R. P., Kozlowski, S. W., Schmidt, A. M., Milner, K. R., & Wiechmann, D. (2004). A multiple-goal, multilevel model of feedback effects on the regulation of individual and team performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 89, 1035–1056.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Dietz, B., van Knippenberg, D., Hirst, G., & Restubog, S. L. D. (2015). Outperforming whom? A multilevel study of performance-prove goal orientation, performance, and the moderating role of shared team identification. Journal of Applied Psychology, 100, 1811–1824.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Dragoni, L. (2005). Understanding the emergence of state goal orientation in organizational work groups: The role of leadership and multilevel climate perceptions. Journal of Applied Psychology, 90, 1084–1095.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Gong, Y., Kim, T.-Y., Lee, D.-R., & Zhu, J. (2013). A multilevel model of team goal orientation, information exchange, and creativity. Academy of Management Journal, 5, 327–851.Google Scholar
  19. Harrison, D. A., Price, K. H., Gavin, J. H., & Florey, A. T. (2002). Time, teams, and task performance: Changing effects of surface-and deep-level diversity on group functioning. Academy of Management Journal, 45, 1029–1045.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Hirst, G., van Knippenberg, D., & Zhou, J. (2009). A cross-level perspective on employee creativity: Goal orientation, team learning behavior, and individual creativity. Academy of Management Journal, 52, 280–293.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Jackson, S. E., Joshi, A., & Erhardt, N. L. (2003). Recent research on team and organizational diversity: SWOT analysis and implications. Journal of Management, 29, 801–830.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Johnson, M. D., Hollenbeck, J. R., Humphrey, S. E., Ilgen, D. R., Jundt, D., & Meyer, C. J. (2006). Cutthroat cooperation: Asymmetrical adaptation of team reward structures. Academy of Management Journal, 49, 103–119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Jung, D. I., & Avolio, B. J. (1999). Effects of leadership style and followers’ cultural orientation on performance in group and individual task conditions. Academy of Management Journal, 42, 208–218.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Jung, D. D., Wu, A., & Chow, C. W. (2008). Towards understanding the direct and indirect effects of CEO’s transformational leadership on firm innovation. The Leadership Quarterly, 19, 582–594.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Klein, K., Bliese, P. D., Kozlowski, S. W. J., Dansereau, F., Gavin, M. A., Hofmann, D. A., et al. (2000). Multilevel analytical techniques: Commonalities, differences, and continuing questions. In K. Klein & S. W. J. Kozlowski (Eds.), Multilevel theory, research, and methods in organizations (pp. 512–553). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar
  26. Klein, H. J., Wesson, M. J., Hollenbeck, J. R., & Agle, B. J. (1999). Goal commitment and the goal-setting process: Conceptual clarification and empirical synthesis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 84, 885–896.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Konradt, U., Schippers, M. C., Garbers, Y., & Steenfatt, C. (2015). Effects of guided reflexivity and team feedback on team performance improvement: The role of team regulatory processes and cognitive emergent states. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 24, 777–795.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kukenberger, M. R., Mathieu, J. E., & Ruddy, T. (2015). A cross-level test of empowerment and process influences on members’ informal learning and team commitment. Journal of Management, 41, 987–1016.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Lebreton, J. M., & Senter, J. L. (2008). Answers to 20 questions about interrater reliability and interrater agreement. Organizational Research Methods, 11, 815–852.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Lyubovnikova, J., Legood, A., Turner, N., & Mamakouka, A. (2015). How authentic leadership influences team performance: The mediating role of team reflexivity. Journal of Business Ethics,. doi: 10.1007/s10551-015-2692-3.Google Scholar
  31. MacKinnon, D. P., Lockwood, C. M., & Williams, J. (2004). Confidence limits for the indirect effect: Distribution of the product and resampling methods. Multivariate Behavioral Research, 39, 99–128.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  32. Marks, M. A., Mathieu, J. E., & Zaccaro, S. J. (2001). A temporally based framework and taxonomy of team processes. Academy of Management Review, 26, 356–376.Google Scholar
  33. Mehta, A., Feild, H., Armenakis, A., & Mehta, N. (2009). Team goal orientation and team performance: The mediating role of team planning. Journal of Management, 35, 1026–1046.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Nease, A. A., Mudgett, B. O., & QuiZones, M. A. (1999). Relationships among feedback sign, self-efficacy, and acceptance of performance feedback. Journal of Applied Psychology, 84, 806–814.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Nederveen Pieterse, A., van Knippenberg, D., & van Ginkel, W. P. (2011). Diversity in goal orientation, team reflexivity, and team performance. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 114, 153–164.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Payne, S. C., Youngcourt, S. S., & Beaubien, J. M. (2007). A meta-analytic examination of the goal orientation nomological net. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92, 128–150.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. Podsakoff, P. M., MacKenzie, S. B., & Podsakoff, N. P. (2012). Sources of method bias in social science research and recommendations on how to control it. Annual Review of Psychology, 65, 539–569.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Porath, C. K., & Bateman, T. S. (2006). Self-regulation: From goal orientation to job performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 91, 185–192.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. Preacher, K. J., & Hayes, A. F. (2008). Asymptotic and resampling strategies for assessing and comparing indirect effects in multiple mediator models. Behavior Research Methods, 40, 879–891.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  40. Schilpzand, M. C., Herold, D. M., & Shalley, C. E. (2011). Members’ openness to experience and team creative performance. Small Group Research, 42, 55–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Schippers, M. C. (2004). Learning to learn at school: Reflexivity, team composition and school performance. Paper presented at the Academy of Management Meeting, New Orleans, Louisiana.Google Scholar
  42. Schippers, M. C., Den Hartog, D. N., Koopman, P. L., & van Knippenberg, D. (2008). The role of transformational leadership in enhancing team reflexivity. Human Relations, 61, 1593–1616.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Schippers, M. C., Edmondson, A. C., & West, M. A. (2014). Team reflexivity as an antidote to team information-processing failures. Small Group Research, 45, 731–769.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Schippers, M. C., West, M. A., & Dawson, J. F. (2015). Team reflexivity and innovation: The moderating role of team context. Journal of Management, 41, 769–788.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Shalley, C. E., Zhou, J., & Oldham, G. R. (2004). The effects of personal and contextual characteristics on creativity: Where should we go from here? Journal of Management, 30, 933–958.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Shin, Y. (2014). Positive group affect and team creativity mediation of team reflexivity and promotion focus. Small Group Research, 45, 337–364.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Shin, S. J., & Zhou, J. (2007). When is educational specialization heterogeneity related to creativity in research and development teams? Transformational leadership as a moderator. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92, 1709–1721.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  48. Snijders, T. A., & Bosker, R. J. (1999). Multilevel analysis: An introduction to basic and advanced multilevel modeling. London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  49. Somech, A. (2006). The effects of leadership style and team processes on performance and innovation in functionally heterogeneous teams. Journal of Management, 32, 132–157.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Tjosvold, D., Tang, M. M., & West, M. (2004). Reflexivity for team innovation in China: The contribution of goal interdependence. Group and Organization Management, 29, 540–559.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. VandeWalle, D. (1997). Development and validation of a work domain goal orientation instrument. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 57, 995–1110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. West, M. A. (2000). Reflexivity, revolution, and innovation in work teams. In M. M. Beyerlein, D. A. Johnson, & S. T. Beyerlein (Eds.), Product development teams (pp. 1–29). Stanford, CT: JAI Press.Google Scholar
  53. West, M. A., & Sacramento, C. A. (2012). Creativity and innovation: The role of team and organizational climate. In M. D. Mumford (Ed.), Handbook of organizational creativity (pp. 359–385). London (UK): Academic Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Widmer, P. S., Schippers, M. C., & West, M. A. (2009). Recent development in reflexivity research: A review. Psychology of Everyday Activity, 2, 2–11.Google Scholar
  55. Yuan, F., & Woodman, R. W. (2010). Innovative behavior in the workplace: The role of performance and image outcome expectations. Academy of Management Journal, 53, 323–342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Zhou, J., & George, J. M. (2001). When job dissatisfaction leads to creativity: Encouraging the expression of voice. Academy of Management Journal, 44, 682–696.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of BusinessHanyang UniversitySeoulSouth Korea

Personalised recommendations