Chapter 1

Change Yourself, Change Your Team

The Great Promise of Teams

“A team can make better decisions, solve more complex problems, and do more to enhance creativity and build skills than individuals working alone.…They have become the vehicle for moving organizations into the future.…Teams are not just nice to have. They are hard-core units of the production.”


Better decisions, increased productivity, and heightened engagement: Teams promise a lot. At their best, teams make many things easier. Good teams solve problems2 better than individuals. They improve quality.3 Teams can increase your engagement and motivation. One study of British rowers even found a physiological advantage to teamwork,4 with team members releasing more endorphins than individuals rowing the same race. We're wired for teamwork.

Beyond any physical benefit, teams have an intellectual advantage because they make more information available to you, help you generate more novel ideas, and give you access to more people who can identify good ideas—and weed out bad ones.

But the proof of the benefits of teamwork isn't just in the numbers. If you've experienced at least one strong team in your career, you know the feeling in your gut. Being part of a great team is electric. You feel more connected, you feel the upward spiral of ideas getting better and better. You know that a bunch of people have your back. It's easy to get stuff done. Once you've felt what it's like to be on a truly great team, ...

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