The Effect of Top Management Team Heterogeneity on Performance in Institutions of Higher Education
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
If management in public organizations is conceptualized to be the result of the effort of a top managerial team, then additional theoretical questions arise related to the interactions of individuals within these teams, the leverage and influence of individual members on others, and the effect of agreement or dissention in top management on organizational performance. The purpose of this study is to determine if higher levels of diversity in one context of top management teams (education) have any effect on the performance of an organization. Importantly, this study will not focus on diversity defined by gender or race and ethnicity alone. Rather, diversity will also tap job-related, functional differences among individuals such as functional background, inside/outside status, and education.
To determine whether the diversity of top management teams matters for organizational performance, this research utilizes original data on presidents and provosts of public four year colleges and universities in the United States between 1993 and 2009. These individuals are expected to lead their institutions through much uncertainty and change while also increasing student performance outcomes. For example, while state appropriations per FTE student have sharply declined in many states, presidents and provosts are expected to become more efficient while also raising quality standards to raise student completion rates. Descriptive analysis indicates that presidents largely select to work with provosts who do not share similar backgrounds. Further, the presence of differences for two nodes of diversity—previous experience (internal/external hire difference) and functional background (h-index absolute difference)—tend to significantly bolster student performance at individual institutions.
- Rutherford_APPAM_15.pdf (611.1KB)