Virtualness and Knowledge in Teams: Managing the Love Triangle of Organizations, Individuals, and Information Technology

Virtualness and Knowledge in Teams: Managing the Love Triangle of Organizations, Individuals, and Information Technology

By
Terri L. Griffith, John E. Sawyer, Margaret Ann Neale
MIS Quarterly. June
2003, Vol. 27, Issue 2, Pages 265-287

Information technology can facilitate the dissemination of knowledge across the organization-even to the point of making virtual teams a viable alternative to face-to-face work. However, unless managed, the combination of information technology and virtual work may serve to change the distribution of different types of knowledge across individuals, teams, and the organization. Implications include the possibility that information technology plays the role of a jealous mistress when it comes to the development and ownership of valuable knowledge in organizations; that is, information technology may destabilize the relationship between organizations and their employees when it comes to the transfer of knowledge. The paper advances theory and informs practice by illustrating the dynamics of knowledge development and transfer in more and less virtual teams.