Teamwork

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How To Develop a Useful “Why” Statement

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Asking why you’re embarking on a project before you begin raises the project’s chance of success. But “to our continuing surprise, we often discover these teams have not even discussed, let alone agreed on, why they are pursuing the project,” write Karen A. Brown, Nancy Lea Hyer and Richard Ettenson. But producing a good “why” statement often requires both a lot of work and heated debate.

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The Power of Being Part of Something Bigger

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“Leaders in many jobs and activities try to make participants feel like they’re part of something bigger than themselves, with the idea that it can motivate them to work harder,” notes the Boston Globe, in an item in its weekly “Ideas” section.

Now new research by Gregory M.

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Marissa Mayer’s Skills as an “Idea Connector”

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Google VP Marissa Mayer exemplifies the key traits of an idea connector, a person who links up idea scouts who have limited internal company networks with R&D engineers and others. One mechanism she uses: she holds three weekly sessions where she is accessible to all Google employees who want to pitch a new idea.

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Building Better Teams

A conventional wisdom about teams is that they tend to perform better when members exchange knowledge freely among themselves and outsiders. Another widely accepted notion is that diversity among team members leads to better performance because of the range of viewpoints and experience of the different individuals.

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The Comparative Advantage of X-Teams

Traditional teams are not faring well in today business environment because they are too inwardly focused and lack flexibility. The authors detail the high levels of performance of a new, externally focused team, the X-team and outline the five components of X-teams they have studied.

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A New Manifesto for Management

The corporation has emerged as perhaps the most powerful social and economic institution of modern society. Yet, corporations and their managers suffer from a profound social ambivalence. Believing this to be symptomatic of the unrealistically pessimistic assumptions that underlie current management doctrine, Ghoshal et al. encourage managers to replace the narrow economic assumptions of the past.

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