The Five Dysfunctions of a Team - A Leadership Fable

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Book Description Publication Date: April 11, 2002 | ISBN-10: 9780787960759 | ISBN-13: 978-0787960759 | Edition: 1st In The Five Dysfunctions of a Team Patrick Lencioni once again offers a leadership fable that is as en...
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Book Description

Publication Date: April 11, 2002 | ISBN-10: 9780787960759 | ISBN-13: 978-0787960759 | Edition: 1st
In The Five Dysfunctions of a Team Patrick Lencioni once again offers a leadership fable that is as enthralling and instructive as his first two best-selling books, The Five Temptations of a CEO andThe Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive. This time, he turns his keen intellect and storytelling power to the fascinating, complex world of teams.

Kathryn Petersen, Decision Tech's CEO, faces the ultimate leadership crisis: Uniting a team in such disarray that it threatens to bring down the entire company. Will she succeed? Will she be fired? Will the company fail? Lencioni's utterly gripping tale serves as a timeless reminder that leadership requires as much courage as it does insight.

Throughout the story, Lencioni reveals the five dysfunctions which go to the very heart of why teams even the best ones-often struggle. He outlines a powerful model and actionable steps that can be used to overcome these common hurdles and build a cohesive, effective team. Just as with his other books, Lencioni has written a compelling fable with a powerful yet deceptively simple message for all those who strive to be exceptional team leaders.

 

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Once again using an astutely written fictional tale to unambiguously but painlessly deliver some hard truths about critical business procedures, Patrick Lencioni targets group behavior in the final entry of his trilogy of corporate fables. And like those preceding it, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team is an entertaining, quick read filled with useful information that will prove easy to digest and implement. This time, Lencioni weaves his lessons around the story of a troubled Silicon Valley firm and its unexpected choice for a new CEO: an old-school manager who had retired from a traditional manufacturing company two years earlier at age 55. Showing exactly how existing personnel failed to function as a unit, and precisely how the new boss worked to reestablish that essential conduct, the book's first part colorfully illustrates the ways that teamwork can elude even the most dedicated individuals--and be restored by an insightful leader. A second part offers details on Lencioni's "five dysfunctions" (absence of trust, fear of conflict, lack of commitment, avoidance of accountability, and inattention to results), along with a questionnaire for readers to use in evaluating their own teams and specifics to help them understand and overcome these common shortcomings. Like the author's previous books, The Five Temptations of a CEO andObsessions of an Extraordinary Executive, this is highly recommended. --Howard Rothman
 

From Publishers Weekly

In keeping with the parable style, Lencioni (The Five Temptations of a CEO) begins by telling the fable of a woman who, as CEO of a struggling Silicon Valley firm, took control of a dysfunctional executive committee and helped its members succeed as a team. Story time over, Lencioni offers explicit instructions for overcoming the human behavioral tendencies that he says corrupt teams (absence of trust, fear of conflict, lack of commitment, avoidance of accountability and inattention to results). Succinct yet sympathetic, this guide will be a boon for those struggling with the inherent difficulties of leading a group. 100,000 first printing.
 
 

Product Details

 
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
184 of 197 people found the following review helpful
 
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
By dedicating 90% of his book to a so-called leadership fable, Patrick Lencioni very effectively conveys the very essence of the model he proposes in order to deal with dysfunctional teams. Though the story he presents is that of a hypothetical newly appointed CEO of a distressed start-up and (in the beginning of the story) her highly dysfunctional executive team, the model is perfectly applicable to any team throughout most organizations.
The model consists of a pyramid with the five dysfunctions of a team (from the bottom, up):
1) Absence of trust: stemming from an unwillingness in the team members to be vulnerable and genuinely open up with one another about their mistakes and weaknesses.
2) Fear of conflict: inability to engage in unfiltered, passionate (yet constructive, though it may strike you as odd) debate.
3) Lack of commitment: no buy in and commitment can be expected when ideas and opinions have not been aired and genuinely taken into consideration prior to a decision.
4) Avoidance of accountability: without commitment to a clearly defined set of goals, team members will hesitate to call their colleagues on their actions and behaviors that are counterproductive for the team.
5) Inattention to results: Lencioni brings it all home through the realization that avoidance of accountability leads to a state where team members tend to put their individual needs above the team's collective goals.
Throughout the last leg of his book, Lencioni contrasts how dysfunctional teams behave by comparing them to a cohesive team in the case of each of the five dysfunctions. He also provides suggestions on overcoming each of the dysfunctions and insights into the role of the leader in this process, all in a very structured and to-the-point way. Complementing this, he provides a Team Assessment tool to help determine where your team is at in terms of each of the five elements of the model.
As much as the book can be digested without too much trouble in 2-3 straight hours, it is inevitable (unless you are fooling yourself or you operate in a very healthy team) to have your managerial wheels in your mind turning at full speed by the time you are done with it. As a manager and an avid reader, I welcomed this book with open arms because I found it to be very useful and readily applicable. Now comes my challenge in putting it to use.
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271 of 301 people found the following review helpful
 
5.0 out of 5 stars Chief Innovation Officer, SmartLeadership.com April 11, 2002
Format:Hardcover
This book is helpful to anyone who serves on a team and specifically helpful for team leaders. You will see yourself and your team in this book. More than that, you will find specific steps you can take to make your team better. Through a real life fable, Pat leads you through the steps you need to take to move a team from dysfunction to health. You will find a clear model as well as examples that are as relevant as your last meeting.
As I read this book I discovered:
1. A vocabulary I can use with my team to discuss dysfunction.
2. A self-analysis that will get the discussion started.
3. A clear model for implementation.
As a team leader, this book challenged me to:
1) Lead selflessly
2) Take risks
3) Encourage conflict
4) Embrace the power of meetings
4) Direct my team around a common theme
This book is simple, practical and filled with wisdom. Highly recommended.
 

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