Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Perfect (Work) Team

Ever wonder why some teams succeed and others don't?  Fascinating stuff in this article that summarizes what Google, where they assiduously study such things, has learned about what makes teams succeed.

From the New York Times:
"What Google Learned From Its Quest to Build the Perfect Team"
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/28/magazine/what-google-learned-from-its-quest-to-build-the-perfect-team.html?_r=0

Notice the key point: Psychological safety.  The freedom to say anything, the freedom to be vulnerable and take risks.  I find this interesting, because I believe (from way too much counseling, most likely) that this is the key in ANY relationship, not just work relationships.

There is so much great content in this article, but I'll quote just a little bit of it.
What Project Aristotle has taught people within Google is that no one wants to put on a ‘‘work face’’ when they get to the office. No one wants to leave part of their personality and inner life at home. But to be fully present at work, to feel ‘‘psychologically safe,’’ we must know that we can be free enough, sometimes, to share the things that scare us without fear of recriminations. We must be able to talk about what is messy or sad, to have hard conversations with colleagues who are driving us crazy. We can’t be focused just on efficiency. Rather, when we start the morning by collaborating with a team of engineers and then send emails to our marketing colleagues and then jump on a conference call, we want to know that those people really hear us. We want to know that work is more than just labor.
 There is much, much more to this study than what was covered in the New York Times article.  Perhaps another post for another day.   :)