Delegation and team selection

  • Date: Feb 4, 2019
  • Time: 16:00
  • Speaker: John Hamman
  • Florida State University
  • Location: MPI
  • Room: Basement

We model an organizational environment in which a manager both determines the skill heterogeneity of her workers and determines whether to retain or delegate the ability to allocate tasks. The manager prefers delegating when uncertainty is sufficiently high relative to the incentive conflict with her workers, which is endogenously determined by her chosen team composition. Experimental data supports the direction of the main predictions, though it shows how and why participants deviate from expected behavior. Deviations from the optimal team composition are consistent with loss aversion and heuristic learning rules, while low cognitive reflection predicts worse decisions in both dimensions. Generally, the results highlight the difficulties in navigating complex managerial environments and illustrate potentially costly ways in which managers seek to simplify their decisions.


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