Organization Management Journal


Many professionals spend a significant amount of their time managing and supporting project teams. To help students learn how to work in this environment, we present the Communication Conundrum Exercise (CCE). The CCE challenges students to solve a symbol-identification problem with tension from hierarchical controls and narrowly defined rules for communication. Students assume roles that correspond to the major roles found on real-life hybrid project teams, and work with the triple constraint triangle common in project management. We provide the rationale for the CCE and the method and results of our analyses from 126 management students in 26 groups, and provide the details of exercise setup, execution, and debrief. The CCE delivers a high-energy, high-impact experience for students on the nature of hybrid project teams and their communication challenges.