Abraham Lincoln’s famous team of rivals were able to work together because they were just that, rivals—not enemies. Diversity of ideas and disagreement among your team members is healthy for your organization. All-out war is not.
In a recent blog post, Patrick Lencioni writes that when a team cannot productively engage in conflict the diversity can even become a competitive disadvantage.
Sometimes we all need to hear “no”.
Imagine the millions of dollars that might have been saved if more underlings had been bold enough to speak up when they recognized an idea as bad. Imagine the embarrassments and lawsuits companies could have been spared if someone had been willing to call out the flaws in a plan or concept.
In most companies, Engineering and Sales & Marketing exist in their own silos. Engineering is a detail-oriented job and so, engineers can be narrowly focused; they may believe that if they build a better mousetrap, the product will sell itself. But products do not sell themselves, and that’s why it’s so important for dialogue to exist between these two departments.
The Big Bang Theory is more than just a funny show. Watch closely and you’ll find loads of lessons for normal’s attempting to lead a team of nerds. Among them:
Lesson One: Make sure you get the details right.
It looks impressive. A table full of engineers, all with their laptops open, ready to meet and take notes. It looks impressive, but it’s actually very inefficient.
From Silicon Valley to academia, experts are realizing that allowing people to bring a laptop into a space set aside for some other purpose yields less than desirable results.