Chapter 2

The Power of Pairs

This chapter will shift the focus from teamwork, which is common, to working in pairs, which is the connective tissue of winning organizations. Pairs are hidden in plain sight. Much is made of teams in organizations, sports, work groups, school classes, and so forth, but the pairs in the groups are seldom noted. Those pairs offer remarkable leverage to their teams, and to their individual members as well. Why is it that descriptions of teams often talk about pairs (catcher–pitcher; quarterback–receiver; research partners; writing partners) as they analyze success or failure?

Pairs are our most familiar relationship, perhaps because we often begin bonding with a parent within hours after we're born, even before we're ...

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