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Individual employees’ multiple team membership: a double-edged sword

PhD ceremony:H.J. (Joost) van de Brake, MSc
When:February 28, 2019
Start:12:45
Supervisors:prof. dr. G.S. (Gerben) van der Vegt, prof. dr. F.A. (Floor) Rink, F. Walter
Co-supervisor:dr. P.J.M.D. (Peter) Essens
Where:Academy building RUG
Faculty:Economics and Business
Individual employees’ multiple team membership: a
double-edged sword

Working in multiple teams at the same time results in stress and absenteeism in new employees

Working in more than one team at the same time is a daily occurrence on the work floor of large companies and government agencies. For experienced employees, multiple-team membership makes work more challenging and interesting. But for newer colleagues, the simultaneous membership of different teams leads to problems. They experience unhealthy stress levels and as a result, are more often ill. These are the conclusions of Joost van de Brake, who will be awarded a PhD by the University of Groningen on 28 February.

Organizations see the simultaneous membership of different teams as a good way to optimally use employees’ knowledge and skills. This working method forces employees to constantly switch between different teams, for example because as experts they can contribute to more than one simultaneously ongoing project. The influence that multiple-team membership has on individual performance and psychological wellbeing is strongly dependent on the experience that employees have built up in their organization, concludes van de Brake.

See also our press release: Working in multiple teams at the same time results in stress and absenteeism in new employees