The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization

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Harvard Business Review Press, Sep 22, 2015 - Business & Economics - 304 pages
The definitive classic on high-performance teams

The Wisdom of Teams is the definitive work on how to create high-performance teams in any organization. Having sold nearly a half million copies and been translated into more than fifteen languages, the authors’ clarion call that teams should be the basic unit of organization for most businesses has permanently shaped the way companies reach the highest levels of performance.

Using engaging case studies and testimonials from both successful and failed teams—ranging from Fortune 500 companies to the U.S. Army to high school sports—the authors explain the dynamics of teams both in great detail and with a broad view. Their conclusions and prescriptions span the familiar to the counterintuitive:

• Commitment to performance goals and common purpose is more important to team success than team building.
• Opportunities for teams exist in all parts of the organization.
• Real teams are the most successful spearheads of change at all levels.
• Working in teams naturally integrates performance and learning.
• Team “endings” can be as important to manage as team “beginnings.”

Wisdom lies in recognizing a team’s unique potential to deliver results and in understanding its many benefits—development of individual members, team accomplishments, and stronger companywide performance. Katzenbach and Smith’s comprehensive classic is the essential guide to unlocking the potential of teams in your organization.

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The wisdom of teams: creating the high-performance organization

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The importance of teams has become a cliche of modern business theory, but few have a clear idea of what it means. In this new edition of their best-selling primer, Katzenbach and Smith try to impart ... Read full review

The wisdom of teams: creating the high-performance organization

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

The authors, who are both consultants, conducted extensive interviews with companies to discover how successful teams are created and sustained. The result is not a research report but a collection of ... Read full review


Becoming a Team
Exploiting the Potential
A Call to Action
Teams Researched for This Book

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About the author (2015)

Jon R. Katzenbach is Founder and Senior Sponsor of the Katzenbach Center at PwC Strategy& (US) LLC. Since the 1980s, he has been recognized as a global leader and expert in leadership, teaming, and culture.

Douglas K. Smith is widely acknowledged to be among the world’s leading management innovators and thinkers. His books include On Value and Values, Fumbling the Future, Make Success Measurable, and Taking Charge of Change.

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