and Margarete Boos

Optimal sharedness of mental models for effective group performance (PSYNDEXshort)


This comment refers to two central concepts of Badke-Schaub et al.'s lead paper, the functionality of mental models for coping with the complexity of reality and sharedness as a prerequisite of group performance. For both ideas, a trade-off perspective is introduced. Major functionalities of mental models, e.g. organization of knowledge, not only provide benefits but also costs, e.g. oversimplification of a problem. The degree to what individual mental models in a team need to be shared in order to manage a task depends on multiple factors, e.g. the nature of the task and the developmental stage of the team. Related to the specific tasks of design teams, the idea of optimal sharedness is elaborated and conclusions on task-oriented processes in design teams are drawn.