It matters to your team, not just to you.

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Who would have thought it?  Mark Bonchek and Elisa Steele did.  And now that they write about it, it makes a lot of sense.  Their premise is simple: “We…propose that just as team members today have assigned doing roles, there should also be thinking roles.”

Here’s their reasoning:

“We normally think of roles as being about what people do, such as team leader, project manager, or researcher. When you need a decision, you go to the team leader. When you want a status update, you go to the project manager. When you need something investigated, you go to the researcher.

“But in today’s marketplace, the smartest companies aren’t those that necessarily out-produce the competition. Instead, it’s the organizations that outthink them. And while there are plenty of tools that help us quickly understand what our teammates do, it’s harder to tell how they thinkResearch shows that it is ultimately how teams think together that most determines their performance.”

Because Bonchek and Steele didn’t find “any simple assessments that would help people connect, communicate, and collaborate based on how they think,” they designed their own.  Their assessment identifies thinking styles based on two dimensions:

  • Focus: “Do you…pay the most attention to ideas, process, action, or relationships?”
  • Orientation: Do you “swing toward…the big picture or the details?”

The assessment can be used as “a useful tool…for the team. Imagine you put together a team to work on a new initiative. Wouldn’t you like to know who is energized by big-picture strategy discussions and who finds them frustrating? Who likes to work on the details of the execution? And who is energized by managing the team dynamics?”

Yes, it would be beneficial to know those things.  Hmmm, certainly worth thinking about…

Contact us and we can help you explore ways to build more productive and collaborative teams.