Location Matters When it Comes to Deal Making says new study from UofT’s Rotman School of Management.
Even six-year-olds know who you sit beside matters, whether you're in first grade or at a high-powered dinner.
But now a new study, using the U.S. Senate Chamber as its laboratory, provides documented evidence of that phenomenon. It shows that where a person is located influences who they interact with and who they will turn to in order to build support for their own agenda.
For the powerful however, seating arrangements don't make much of a difference. That's because the people they need support from usually come to them.
The study's researchers chose the Senate as "a window into how people rally support for their initiatives," said Christopher Liu, an assistant professor of strategic management at the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management. Prof. Liu conducted the study with Rotman PhD student Jillian Chown.
The Senate was ideal for study because of its rich record-keeping. The researchers analyzed co-sponsorship patterns for bills proposed between 1979 and 2001. This was compared with seating charts kept for the same period. Detailed analysis was done on the distance between specific senators’ desks to test for the likelihood that senators sitting closer to each other might co-sponsor similar bills.
The study found that co-sponsorship of a senator’s bill was more likely to come from those sitting near them. Senators sitting close together were also more likely to co-sponsor the same bills. More senior -- and therefore more powerful -- senators however were not dependent on their senate location for support on legislative initiatives.
Although the study took place in a political forum, its findings have implications for other organizations that are trying to better understand the importance of where their employees are located and how to foster interactions between them.
"Geographic location is a managerial lever," said Prof. Liu. "You can't force people to work with one another. But you can make them share a bathroom, or pass one another in the hall.”
The study is forthcoming in the Strategic Management Journal.
For the latest thinking on business, management and economics from the Rotman School of Management, visit www.rotman.utoronto.ca/FacultyAndResearch/NewThinking.aspx.
The Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is redesigning business education for the 21st century with a curriculum based on Integrative Thinking. Located in the world’s most diverse city, the Rotman School fosters a new way to think that enables the design of creative business solutions. For more information, visit www.rotman.utoronto.ca.
For more information:
Manager, Media Relations
Rotman School of Management
University of Toronto
Follow Rotman on Twitter @rotmanschool
Watch Rotman on You Tube www.youtube.com/rotmanschool
Ken McGuffin | EurekAlert!
Study suggests new way of preventing diabetes-associated blindness
26.05.2015 | Johns Hopkins Medicine
Memories Influence Choice of Food
22.05.2015 | Universität Basel
The only professorship in Germany to date, one master's programme, one laboratory with worldwide unique equipment and the corresponding research results: The University of Würzburg is leading in the field of biofabrication.
Paul Dalton is presently the only professor of biofabrication in Germany. About a year ago, the Australian researcher relocated to the Würzburg department for...
Physicists have developed an innovative method that could enable the efficient use of nanocomponents in electronic circuits. To achieve this, they have developed a layout in which a nanocomponent is connected to two electrical conductors, which uncouple the electrical signal in a highly efficient manner. The scientists at the Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel have published their results in the scientific journal “Nature Communications” together with their colleagues from ETH Zurich.
Electronic components are becoming smaller and smaller. Components measuring just a few nanometers – the size of around ten atoms – are already being produced...
Development and implementation of an advanced automobile parking navigation platform for parking services
To fulfill the requirements of the industry, PolyU researchers developed the Advanced Automobile Parking Navigation Platform, which includes smart devices,...
The world's first electrical car and passenger ferry powered by batteries has entered service in Norway. The ferry only uses 150 kWh per route, which...
On Tuesday, 19 May 2015 the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its home port in Bremerhaven, setting a course for the Arctic. Led by Dr Ilka Peeken from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) a team of 53 researchers from 11 countries will investigate the effects of climate change in the Arctic, from the surface ice floes down to the seafloor.
RV Polarstern will enter the sea-ice zone north of Spitsbergen. Covering two shallow regions on their way to deeper waters, the scientists on board will focus...
20.05.2015 | Event News
18.05.2015 | Event News
12.05.2015 | Event News
27.05.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering
27.05.2015 | Health and Medicine
27.05.2015 | Physics and Astronomy