Teams are formed to benefit from an expanded pool of expertise and experience, yet 2 aspects of theconflict stemming from those core differences will ultimately play a large role in determining teamviability and productivity: conflict states and conflict processes. The current study theoretically reorga-nizes the literature on team conflict—distinguishing conflict states from conflict processes—and detailsthe effects of each on team effectiveness. Findings from a meta-analytic cumulation of 45 independentstudies (total number of teams3,218) suggest states and processes are distinct and important predictorsof team performance and affective outcomes. Controlling for conflict states (i.e., task and relationshipconflict), conflict processes explain an additional 13% of the variance in both team performance and teamaffective outcomes. Furthermore, findings reveal particular conflict processes that are beneficial andothers detrimental to teams. The truth about team conflict: Conflict processes, that is,howteams interactregarding their differences, are at least as important as conflict states, that is, thesource and intensityoftheir perceived incompatibilities.
DeChurch, L. A., Mesmer-Magnus, J. R. & Doty, D. (2013). Moving Beyond Relationship and Task Conflict:Toward a Process-State Perspective.Journal of Applied Psychology, 98(4), 559–578