What Do You Recommend? The Effects of Communication on Misreporting in Autonomous Teams

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In autonomous teams, formal decision-making responsibility is shared, paving the way for communication to play a prominent role. We conduct three experimental studies to examine how members of autonomous teams use communication to influence cost reporting decisions. The first and second experimental studies illustrate that communication among team members is critical in driving team misreporting. Both reveal statistical evidence that communication can facilitate a dishonesty shift, where honest team members do not discipline dishonest team members, but the latter infects the former instead. In our third experimental study, in which adverse monetary consequences of misreporting are more salient, we find no statistical evidence of the dishonesty shift. Jointly, the findings of all three experimental studies suggest that communication can adversely affect misreporting in autonomous teams, which hinges on the salience of different situational cues.

Daniel Schaupp
Daniel Schaupp
Assistant Professor of Management Accounting

My research interests include contemporary performance management systems, transparency and the impact of digitalization on management accounting.