The making and unmaking of teams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Contemporary expert organizations rely heavily on cross-border, often temporary teams typically working through virtual means of communication. While static aspects of teams are well researched, there have been considerably fewer studies on team dynamics and team processes. Existing process studies tend to take a cautious, entity-based approach, emphasizing team structure as much as (or even more than) processual aspects. This article represents a shift from studying teams as entities and structures changing over time to studying teams as an on-going process. Participants engage in teaming and thus in the continued making and sometimes unmaking of teams. We report on a study of three anatomically similar, self-managed teams performing the same set of complex tasks with radically different teaming processes. With more or less successful shared sensemaking, the team members collectively create (or fail to create) not only team task outputs but also the team itself.


External organisations
  • Hanken School of Economics
  • University of Queensland
  • City, University of London
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Social Psychology


  • process study, sensemaking, team effectiveness, team processes, teams
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Relations
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2019 Feb 15
Publication categoryResearch