[Excerpt] This chapter organizes the other chapters of the volume around a fundamental status-affirmation principle, namely, that status differentials generate corresponding differences in performance expectations which, in turn, produce behaviors that affirm performance expectations. The chapters in this volume elaborate that proposition by showing how information exchange, patterns of privilege, and the accuracy of power perceptions reflect or strengthen the status-affirmation process. Several chapters also suggest conditions that forestall or weaken this process such as claims to expertise and communication styles. Other chapters can be construed as offering applications of the status-affirmation principle to the performance of corporate project teams and to the relationships between standard and nonstandard employees in the workplace. Overall, the chapters reflect the strength and vitality of the tradition of work on group processes.
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