The Discipline of Teams

by Jon R. Katzenbach and Douglas K. Smith 

The Idea In Brief

The word team gets bandied about so loosely that many managers are oblivious to its real meaning or its true potential. With a run-of-the-mill working group, performance is a function of what the mem-bers do as individuals. A team's performance, by contrast, calls for both individual and mutual accountability.

Though it may not seem like anything special, mutual accountability can lead to astonishing results. It enables a team to achieve performance levels that are far greater than the individual bests of the team's members. To achieve these benefits, team members must do more than listen, respond constructively, and provide sup- port to one another. In addition to sharing these team-building values, they must share an essential discipline.

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