Document Type


Date of Degree

Fall 2014

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Business Administration

First Advisor

Kristof-Brown, Amy L

First Committee Member

Mount, Michael K

Second Committee Member

Brown, Kenneth G

Third Committee Member

Colbert, Amy E

Fourth Committee Member

Li, Ning


The title of this study refers to three different dimensions of goal orientation (GO), which is defined as the stable motivated pattern of cognition and action that results from the continued pursuit of mastery-approach, performance-approach, or performance-avoid goals in different situations over time. Individuals who are primarily motivated through high learning or mastery goals ("masters"), through high performance goals ("showoffs"), and by a high desire to find easy work or avoid failing their set performance goals ("slackers") will all interact on teams with varying degrees of goal completion. These differences in the likeness of GO of team members has implications for how they interact with team members, how individuals learn, and how the team performs. This study addresses this lack of attention by more explicitly examining how likeness on GO, a motivational trait associated with how individuals react to situations where they must achieve goals, can influence the degree to which individuals can effectively work with their fellow team members. In addition, this study also investigates how GO homogeneity at the team level influences team-level learning and performance. This study shows that at the individual level, GO congruence influences learning outcomes, contributions to the team, cooperative behaviors, and that this effect is mediated through metacognition and attraction to team members. This study also shows that psychological safety serves as the mechanism at the team level through which GO homogeneity influences team level performance and team-level learning behaviors.


goal orientation, learning in teams, person-environment fit


vi, 175 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 114-131).


Copyright 2014 David S. DeGeest