Investigating the curvilinear relationship between temporal leadership and team creativity: The moderation of knowledge complexity and the mediation of team creative process engagement

Chenggang Duan, Melody Jun Zhang, Xinmei Liu, Chu Ding Ling, Xiao Yun Xie

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

Abstract

Modern organizations increasingly rely on teams to provide creative solutions in a timely manner. Temporal leadership has thus gained substantial interest, based on the assumption that it is conducive to team effectiveness. However, we advance a different view of temporal leadership's influence on team creativity. Building on temporal leadership literature and the paradox model of creativity, we propose that temporal leadership has a curvilinear (i.e., inverted U-shaped) relationship with team creativity. Moreover, team knowledge complexity moderates this relationship, while team creative process engagement conditionally mediates it. We conducted two field studies to test our hypotheses. In Study 1, our analyses of multisource data from 68 research and development teams found that temporal leadership has an inverted U-shaped relationship with team creativity, especially for teams with high knowledge complexity. In Study 2, analyses of multiwave, multisource data from 100 work teams further revealed that team creative process engagement conditionally mediates the curvilinear relationship. Specifically, temporal leadership has a stronger indirect curvilinear relationship with team creativity through team creative process engagement in teams with high (vs. low) levels of knowledge complexity. We discuss the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)717
Number of pages738
JournalJournal of Organizational Behavior
Volume44
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2023

Keywords

  • knowledge complexity
  • paradox lens
  • team creativity
  • temporal leadership

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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