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Why Some Teams Are Smarter Than Others

Why Some Teams Are Smarter Than Others
Individual intelligence, as psychologists measure it, is defined by its generality: People with good vocabularies, for instance, also tend to have good math skills, even though we often think of those abilities as distinct. The results of our studies showed that this same kind of general intelligence also exists for teams. On average, the groups that did well on one task did well on the others, too. In other words, some teams were simply smarter than others. We next tried to define what characteristics distinguished the smarter teams from the rest, and we were a bit surprised by the answers we got. Instead, the smartest teams were distinguished by three characteristics. First, their members contributed more equally to the team’s discussions, rather than letting one or two people dominate the group. Finally, teams with more women outperformed teams with more men. In a new study that we published with David Engel and Lisa X. And they did. This last finding was another surprise. Related:  Team BuildingTeam effectiveness

How to Plan a Team Offsite That Actually Works All around the world, teams large and small assemble at offsite locations to take a step away from their day-to-day work and build team spirit. Unfortunately, many team building offsites turn out to be ineffective, or worse. Sometimes, it’s because the sense of unity and cohesion that gets created when everyone is together having “fun” outside of the office doesn’t last long once everyone gets back to work. Other times, “team building activities” have the unintended consequence of bringing out competition and hostility between individuals instead of enhancing commitment and cohesion within the team. In order to create a team-building offsite that will have positive, enduring effects, it’s helpful to think of offsite meetings as kind of a microcosm, or a “play within a play,” wherein the leader and the team use the stage to rehearse the new dynamics and norms that they want to perform back at the office or take on the road. Some best practices can help. Don’ts: Do’s: Do set ground rules.

3 characteristics smart team How to Send Better Email - Without Second-Guessing a Single Word Have you ever received an amazing email, one that you’d like to print out and pin to your wall, one that made you grin from ear to ear or slow-clap in appreciation and reverence? When I come across these gems, I drop them into a “Snippets” folder. I study them, I swoon over them, and I borrow bits and pieces of them to send better email. Now imagine that every email you send is as great as these occasional all-stars you receive. Impossible? Not at all. Worth shooting for? At Buffer, we strive for 100 percent awesomeness in the emails we send to customers, and that pursuit of excellence carries over to the emails we send to teammates, colleagues, friends, and family. So I’m happy to share some of my sources of email inspiration. An email template for shaving 20 hours off your work week Author Robbie Abed took to LinkedIn to share a pair of emails that he had used successfully to shave his workweek from 60 hours to 40 hours. Here is email number one, which is to be sent on Monday. Thank you!

How to build a team like NASA The U.S. job market seems to be reliably back on its feet, and it’s signalling a sea change for employers and employees alike. Job seekers are no longer desperate for any opportunity that comes along. Those who are currently employed are discarding the I’m-just-thankful-I-have-a- job mindset. At long last, many people have the luxury of stepping back, taking stock, and figuring out what they really want out of a job, career and company. This means businesses are suddenly facing serious competition for talent, something they haven’t had to deal with in a while. Some of the elements that factor into the job hunt calculus are what they have always been—fair pay, good benefits, the possibility of a healthy work/life balance. Employees today expect to be consistently acknowledged for exactly who they are, and communicated with in exactly the way they want to be. Actually, the desire to feel seen, known and understood is nothing new. More than 40 years ago, Dr. Listen to their language

Interactions between members 6 Mistakes that Can Get Your Emails Marked as Spam (Even if You’re Not a Spammer) You’re not a spammer. You value customer relationships and work hard to build trust with your customer base. But even with all the work that you’re doing, you’re still seeing a handful of spam complaints when you send out your email marketing campaigns. What are you doing wrong? Because spam reports are often a matter of opinion — someone receives your email, decides it is unwanted, and clicks to “report as spam” — it can be difficult to figure out what you’re doing wrong. While there’s no foolproof system for avoiding spam reports completely, there are certain warning signs you can watch out for as you prepare to send your next email campaign. Let’s take a look at 6 common mistakes that you’ll want to avoid: 1. People open email from people they know, and they delete or mark as spam email from people they don’t recognize. Permission-based email marketing is the best route to developing long-lasting email marketing relationships. 2. 3. Pay attention to what’s working with your audience. 4.

Why Being In a Group Causes Some to Forget Their Morals Three reasons good people do bad things. When people are in a group they are more disconnected from their moral beliefs, according to new neuroscientific research. The results come from a study which compared how people’s brains work when they are alone compared with when they are in a group (Cikara et al., 2014). The study was inspired by a trip to Yankee Stadium in New York made by Dr Mina Cikara, now an assistant professor at Carnegie Mellon University. On the trip her husband was wearing a Red Sox cap (for non-US readers: the Red Sox are a rival team from Boston). He was continuously heckled by Yankee fans, so Mina took the cap from her husband and wore it herself: “What I decided to do was take the hat from him, thinking I would be a lesser target by virtue of the fact that I was a woman.I was so wrong. When ‘me versus you’ becomes ‘us versus them’ Two reasons why people behave differently in groups are that: “I have stolen food from shared refrigerators.” Forgotten morals

Social sensitivity mind reading untitled This coffee shop branding is by Ipek Eris for the coffee shop, pizzeria and book/design store Prototype No.1. Ipek is a self employed art director and graphic designer based in Istanbul and specializes in corporate identity and branding. The branding was created using materials such as; kraft paper, rope, stamps and natural paper, all signs are also hand painted. Using simple forms – a square, a circle, a triangle and a hexagon- and combining them with handmade typography the idea was to create a friendly, warm and inviting restaurant and cafe. via: Ipek Eris Coffee Shop Branding: Gawatt Take-Out Coffee This coffee shop branding project for Gawatt take-out coffee shop was created by art director Stepan Azaryan, graphic designer Karen Gevorgyan, and Illustrator Armenak Grigoryan. August 18, 2014 In "Graphic Design" Branding Inspiration: Nordic House Nordic House is a dry-cleaning shop in San Francisco, California. September 21, 2013 Tattoo Shop Branding: Dagger & Co. by Chad Michael

Don’t Just Play Nice When confronted with conflicts or difficulties at work, often we find ourselves seeking agreement, order, and “pleasantness.” At first glance this appears appropriate—even obvious. But more often than not, seeking harmony in order to promote a healthy workplace can diminish creativity, hamper communication, and stunt growth over the long run. In his book Managerial Courage, management consultant and psychologist Harvey Hornstein concludes from his research that when pursuing harmony in the face of conflict, we can find ourselves mistakenly anesthetizing our creative thinking and skillfulness. “What often emerges under the pressure to get along, be nice, and work and play well together is an uncontroversial package of rules about how to act and what to think, distinguished only by their blandness,” he writes. Instead, Hornstein suggests, in the face of conflict we need courage—not harmony. Rushing toward this kind of false harmony can have dire impact on how we develop effective teams.