The effects of challenge and hindrance stressors on unlearning and NPD success: The moderating role of team conflict.


Les Tien-Shang Lee

In order to develop successful products, an NPD team needs to engage in an unlearning process by reorienting their existing beliefs and routines. Previous studies have mostly determined that unlearning is based on external organizational stressors, while internal ones are rarely discussed. Based on expectancy theory, this study examines the effects of challenge and hindrance stressors embedded in the organization on team unlearning. Moreover, this study also investigates the moderating effects of team conflict on the relationship between team unlearning and NPD success. To test the proposed hypotheses, 87 NPD team leaders and 336 members participated in the study. The results indicate that a challenge stressor positively influences team unlearning and NPD success, while a hindrance stressor has the opposite effect. Further, higher task conflict strengthens the positive effect of team unlearning on new product success when NPD teams engage less in the unlearning process, while less relationship conflict strengthens the effect when the teams are more engaged in the unlearning process.

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