Students Staff
University of Essex

Seminars for 2017/18


27 April 2016: “Star Wars”: Mechanisms and Effects of Conflict between Star Employees, and between Star Employees and Star Organizations (Management Science & Entrepreneurship Group)

Dr Paolo Aversa from Cass Business School

At 11:30 in TF.0.35 (Southend Campus).

In this seminar, Dr Paolo Aversa presented his paper, titled, “Star Wars”: Mechanisms and Effects of Conflict between Star Employees, and between Star Employees and Star Organizations.

Paper Abstract:

What are the mechanisms underpinning conflict between star employees and star organizations? And ultimately what is the optimal distribution of status across stars to maximize their individual performance? Despite a growing body of research on the effects of status on performance, findings have remained mixed and mostly focused on the cumulative effects of striking the optimal number of stars in a team, rather than on local configurations of status within firms. Also the interplay with the employer’s status has been only partially investigated. This mixed-method paper inductively explores the fine-grained mechanisms underpinning conflicts between dyads of star employees, as well as dyads of star employees and star organizations whose tasks are functionally quasi-independent. By inductively examining three iconic case studies with evidence on intra-team conflict in Formula 1 racing, we qualitatively identify four key mechanisms that undergird conflict in star-studded organizations. Also through a population-level test of Formula 1 competitions (1981-2010) we complement former findings by showing optimal status distribution in the dyads employee-employee and employee-employer. Results suggest that similarity in status is maximized at high level of stardom both for employees and employers. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

<< Back to seminar listing