“In the last few decades much research has proven the superiority of group decision making over that of even the brightest individual in the group. There is one exception to this rule. If the group lacks harmony or the ability to cooperate, decision-making quality and speed suffer. Research at Cambridge University found that even groups comprising brilliant individuals will make bad decisions if the group disintegrates into bickering, interpersonal rivalry, or power plays… A leader skilled in collaboration can keep resonance high and thus ensure that the group’s decisions will be worth the effort of meeting.”
Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis & Annie McKee, Primal Leadership: Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence

“The leader who understands how process unfolds uses as little force as possible and runs the group without pressuring people. When force is used, conflict and argument follow. The group field degenerates. The climate is hostile, neither open nor nourishing. The wise leader runs the group without fighting to have things a certain way. The leader’s touch is light. The leader neither defends nor attacks. Remember that consciousness, not selfishness, is both the means of teaching and the teaching itself. Group members will challenge the ego of one who leads egocentrically. But one who leads selflessly and harmoniously will grow and endure.”
John Heider, The Tao of Leadership: Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching Adapted for a New Age

“I have noticed that the people who are late are often so much jollier than the people who have to wait for them.”http://www2.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif
E.V. Lucas, British author

“The Ken Blanchard Companies recently conducted a survey of more than 900 corporate executives. Results show that while employees perceive that their job success depends increasingly on their effectiveness as team members and team leaders, very few have actually received training on how to create, lead, or participate in teams. In fact, many of them feel that the time spent on teams is not necessarily productive or effective. Ineffective use of meeting time was cited as the highest frustration about being part of a team; followed by ineffective communication among team members (50%); and lack of accountability (47%). Other common complaints include: lack of process for structuring a team and its work; lack of clear purpose; and lack of trust among team members.”
www.HR.com, August 14 2006

“In her study of group work in school classrooms, the late Stanford sociologist Elizabeth Cohen found that if kids are simply put into teams and told to solve a problem, the typical result is one kid dominating and others looking totally disengaged.

But if teachers take the time to establish norms – roles, goals, etc. – ‘not only will [the children] behave according to the new norms, but they will enforce rules on other group members.’”
Jerry Useem, “What’s that spell? TEAMWORK!” Fortune