Although many researchers have shown that a transactive memory system (TMS) enhances a team's performance (e.g., Lewis, 2003, 2004; Liu, Lv, & Fan, 2010; Zhang, Hempel, Han, & Tjosvold, 2007), most have paid little attention to the relationship between TMS and team performance. In order to improve the effectiveness of a team, it is necessary to open the black box so that the mechanism by which TMS contributes to team performance can be understood.
Figure 1 depicts the framework of our longitudinal study of team efficacy, which involved 31 teams, and in which we tested the mediating effects of team efficacy between TMS and team performance.
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Researchers have concluded that TMS contributes to a more effective team performance (Lewis, 2003, 2004; Liu et al., 2010; Zhang et al., 2007). If members of a team know each other, they are more sensible when doing assignments. It is easier to cooperate even when the assignments are not clearly defined (Moreland & Myaskovsky, 2000). Thus, we developed the following hypothesis: H1: TMS will have a positive effect on team performance.
Although a team operating with a TMS is more likely to perform well, this is not automatically the case, owing to each team member's individual cognition and psychology. The theory of team or group efficacy could shed some light on the team process (Guzzo, Yost, Campbell, & Shea, …