Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Teamwork according to Google
But what they found was not what they expected. It wasn't the mix of PhDs that made a good team, but how they worked together. Is it just me but doesn't that seem obvious?
So what are Google's five keys to a successful group:
1. Psychological Safety. Are you free to safely take risks in your group or will you be ostracized or punished. Hopefully, your teammates are supportive and don't see risk takers as ignorant or disruptive.
2. Dependability. Anybody who has done a school project knows exactly what this means.
3. Structure and clarity. Does the group get the assignment (task), have a plan to accomplish the assignment, and will it be successful? If you can answer "yes" to these questions, you are on your way to success.
4. Meaning. This can really only be defined by an individual, but it basically boils down to "Do you like what you are doing?" In the case of Google (or any other employer), this can be a lifetime of drudgery or delight. In the case of student groups, it can amount to how valuable the project may be to your landing a job. Did it help you make a decision (do you really want to do this for the rest of your life?).
5. Impact. For Google employees what "impact" amounts to is does your work make a difference? For student groups you might think it applies to the grade you received, especially in those groups where you get to grade each other. There is ALWAYS that one person that didn't do anything (or very little).
Do you like working in groups? You will be working in groups when you get into the working world, how do you think you will handle that? What do you think makes a successful team?