12 Essential Insights for Managing Teams

For decades, researchers have published findings around leadership and team building in MIT Sloan Management Review. This collection offers a dozen of our most popular articles on managing teams.

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Teamwork doesn’t just happen — good teams require good leaders who have vision and practiced skills. Leading effective teams today requires laying the groundwork for how team members and the wider organization will be successful. We’ve collected a dozen of our most popular articles on leading teams from our archives.

This collection, all of which are free on our site Tuesday, March 24, through Thursday, March 26, offers a range of actionable advice for managers on how to foster trust and accountability, resolve conflicts, and bridge geographic distances on distributed teams. Readers will benefit from decades of research from academics and practitioners on the skills and effective approaches leaders need to manage diverse teams to enhance collaboration and achieve better performance.

1. The Smart Way to Respond to Negative Emotions at Work

Christine M. Pearson

Whether provoked by bad decisions, misfortune, poor timing, or employees’ personal problems, no organization is immune from bad feelings. Many executives try to ignore negative emotions in the workplace, but that tactic can be costly. When employees’ negative feelings are responded to wisely, they often provide important feedback.

2. It’s Time to Tackle Your Team’s Undiscussables

Ginka Toegel and Jean-Louis Barsoux

The more undiscussables there are on your team, the more difficult it is for the team to function effectively. Ignoring unresolved conflicts results in strained relationships and bad decisions. This article outlines how leaders can bring the four types of undiscussables to light, improving team learning, problem-solving, and performance.

3. Five Rules for Managing Large, Complex Projects

Andrew Davies, Mark Dodgson, David M. Gann, and Samuel C. MacAulay

Large-scale, long-term projects are notoriously difficult to manage. But research on megaprojects — defined as projects costing more than $1 billion — reveals five lessons that can help executives manage any big, complex project more effectively.

4. Five Ways to Improve Communication in Virtual Teams

N. Sharon Hill and Kathryn M. Bartol

When it comes to managing your virtual team’s success, it’s not the technology that matters — it’s how people use it. This article looks at five strategies for conquering distance and improving communication and performance in dispersed teams.

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