Impact of Communication Medium and Computer Support on Group Perceptions and Performance: A Comparison of Face-to-Face and Dispersed Meetings
Economic, social, and political institutions worldwide are relying increasingly on communication technology to perform a variety of functions: holding electronic town meetings where hundreds of people in numerous cities participate simultaneously; forging strategic links with business partners, thereby forming “virtual corporations” that can be instantly disbanded; redefining the conventional notion of a college campus by offering classes via interactive media to non-traditional students; and enabling consumers with personal digital assistants to remain connected with their children and families at all times. In this environment, where geographic and temporal boundaries are shrinking rapidly, electronic meeting systems (EMS) are playing an important role. This study examines the impact of teams on using EMS in dispersed and face-to-face settings. The results suggest that EMS can be effective in augmenting traditional audio-conferencing by strengthening the medium and allowing additional communication use to be exchanged among participants. They also indicate that EMS can improve decision-making performance, given proper task-technology fit and adequate facilitation. As businesses expand globally, such systems will provide instant communication capabilities and help coordinate dispersed decision-making activities.
|Author||Laku Chidambaram and Beth Jones|
|Keywords||Electronic meeting systems, group decision support systems, communication media, audio-conferencing, dispersed/remote meeting support, group performance, group perceptions|