Does functional managerial dependence affect working relationships during NPD projects: an Australian perspective
New product development work requires managers from functional backgrounds to work together on projects and rely on each other's specialist skills and resources to meet their own job requirements. This interaction requires the manager to make decisions about the extent to which they want to invest in a working relationship with a functional counterpart. The purpose of this exploratory paper is to develop and test an exploratory model examining the effects of such managerial dependence on relationship investment and communication and during cross-functional working relationships between marketing managers and R&D managers in 184 new product development projects in Australia. This study provides empirical support for the proposition that while the way a manager perceives their dependence on their functional counterparts is important, a greater predictor of successful working relationships is the norm of reciprocity. This has implications for the nature of integration mechanisms that top management use to facilitate successful interactions between their functional specialists on NPD projects.
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