Interesting IBM article I was thankfully pointed to by the Evidence-based Soup Blog
Wu et. al. (2009) Value of Social Networks – A Large Scale Analysis on Network Structure Impact to Financial Revenue of Information Technology Consultants
Care is needed interpreting this research as it is correlational and can not imply causation, but I would emphasize three findings:
- I believe there is evidence that diversity in project teams (maybe coupled with good communication skills) improves performance. Wu provides evidence that this could apply to communication networks as well.
- Having access to powerful individuals (in the hierarchy) improves the performance of project teams
- The social networks of the entire project team seems to be more important than the networks of individuals
This would imply that companies should encourage the development of strong diverse project teams networks and should support the involvement of upper level management in project team networks.