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The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization

Jon Katzenbach

At a glance:

The definition of a "team" as opposed to a "working group" began with Katzenbach.

In this book, the authors provide a comprehensive examination of team dynamics by utilizing a variety of case studies and testimonials from successful and unsuccessful teams, including those from Fortune 500 companies, the U.S. Army, and high school sports teams. They present both detailed analysis and a broad perspective, offering both familiar and unexpected conclusions and recommendations.

Key takeaways:

- A team is defined as a "small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose, performance goals, and approach for which they hold themselves mutually accountable."

- The authors argue that teams are necessary for organizations to achieve high performance and adapt to rapidly changing environments.

- A clear and shared purpose for a team is critical for its performance. There is a need for team members to have a strong sense of commitment to that purpose.

-Effective communication and trust among team members is extremely important.

- A clear understanding of roles and responsibilities is also critically essential.

- There are different types of teams, including problem-solving teams, self-managed teams, and cross-functional teams and their characteristics.

- Teams need to be nurtured and supported by their organization, and that effective teams require ongoing attention and development.


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