Saturday, June 07, 2008

The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team

I had skimmed this book several years ago, but moving into a new role prompts new learning desires. I like Patrick Lencioni's writing style. He spent 95% of the book telling a fable, a story about a new CEO coming into a company. The old CEO was still on the team, and the new one was not from the tech industry. But in a series of off-sites and through their work she led them to see working as a team was the most valuable asset they could have. The book could have slid into pollyanish feel good stuff, but Lenioni navigated around that pretty well.

Here are the 5 dysfunctions, from the most basic up:

Absence of trust: this leads to a sense of invulnerability and the building of silos within an organization. Trust is key to any team, and it can only be earned and given over time.

Fear of conflict: this leads to an artificial harmony as team members avoid the difficult discussions.

Lack of commitment: this leads to ambiguity in decision-making and no follow through.

Avoidance of accountability: this leads to low standards of excellence.

Inattentiveness to results: this leads to a focus on status and ego of the individuals instead of the team, because there is no focus on the team's results. Often this can be disguised by individuals hitting their own goals irrespective of the team's success.

Overall a good book. It's a quick read, too, probably just an hour or two.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Me thinks it is not a coincidence that you would be reviewing such a book at such a time as this. 'Tis telling.