Teaming: How Organizations Learn, Innovate, and Compete in the Knowledge Economy

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Jossey-Bass, 2012 - Business & Economics - 334 pages
New breakthrough thinking in organizational learning,leadership, and change

Continuous improvement, understanding complex systems, andpromoting innovation are all part of the landscape of learningchallenges today's companies face. Amy Edmondson shows thatorganizations thrive, or fail to thrive, based on how well thesmall groups within those organizations work. In mostorganizations, the work that produces value for customers iscarried out by teams, and increasingly, by flexible team-likeentities. The pace of change and the fluidity of most workstructures means that it's not really about creating effectiveteams anymore, but instead about leading effective teaming.

Teaming shows that organizations learn when the flexible,fluid collaborations they encompass are able to learn. The problemis teams, and other dynamic groups, don't learn naturally.Edmondson outlines the factors that prevent them from doing so,such as interpersonal fear, irrational beliefs about failure,groupthink, problematic power dynamics, and information hoarding.With Teaming, leaders can shape these factors by encouragingreflection, creating psychological safety, and overcoming defensiveinterpersonal dynamics that inhibit the sharing of ideas. Further,they can use practical management strategies to help organizationsrealize the benefits inherent in both success and failure.

  • Presents a clear explanation of practical management conceptsfor increasing learning capability for business results
  • Introduces a framework that clarifies how learning processesmust be altered for different kinds of work
  • Explains how Collaborative Learning works, and gives tips forhow to do it well
  • Includes case-study research on Intermountain healthcare,Prudential, GM, Toyota, IDEO, the IRS, and both Cincinnati andMinneapolis Children's Hospitals, among others

Based on years of research, this book shows how leaders can makeorganizational learning happen by building teams that learn.

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About the author (2012)

Amy C. Edmondson is the Novartis Professorof Leadership and Management at the Harvard Business School, where she teaches coursesin leadership, organizational learning, andoperations management in the MBA andExecutive Education programs.

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