When and how team leaders matter

ABSTRACT Team leaders tend to be viewed both by lay observers and by scholars as more influential in shaping team performance than is warranted by research evidence.This chapter identifies the technological, organizational, and contextual constraints that can attenuate the impact of team leader behavior; and explores the behavioral options that remain available to leaders underRead more

Foster Team Effectiveness by Fulfilling Key Leadership Functions

First published in E. A. Locke (Ed.), Handbook of principles of organizational behavior. New York: Wiley – Blackwell Written by Hackman and Wageman for practitioners who work with teams, especially new leaders. Summarizes four key principles for designing and leading teams—including asking whether you really need a team. The article summarizes the 6 Conditions frameworkRead more

Leading teams when the time is right

First published in Organizational Dynamics 38(3): 192–203 Written for those who coach teams and leaders. Leaders need two different types of great timing to help their teams. First, they understand what kinds of help to give teams at predictable times in their work cycles. Second, they know how to influence their teams on the fly,Read more

The Team Diagnostic Survey and the 60-30-10 Rule for Coaching Teams

When I conducted my first field research project as a graduate student at Harvard, I studied the work of customer service reps who had just been re-organized into self-managing teams. The transition was consequential, both for the service reps and for their front-line managers. The service people went from having a highly autonomous job—each hadRead more

Wageman, R., Nunes, D.A., Burruss, J., & Hackman J.R. (2008). Senior Leadership Teams: What It Takes To Make Them Great. Harvard Business Review Press.

Abstract: An organisation’s fate hinges on its CEO—right? Not according to the authors of Senior Leadership Teams. They argue that in today’s world of neck-snapping change, demands on leaders in top roles are rapidly outdistancing the capabilities of any one person – no matter how talented. Result? Chief executives are turning to their enterprise’s seniorRead more