The Collective Intelligence of Teams

Anita Williams Woolley, Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior & Theory at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon, gives a brief summary of the findings of her research into the Collective Intelligence of Teams.  Key findings include:

  • Some groups show success at completing a wide variety of tasks, or high collective intelligence.
  • Little correlation between intelligence of the members of the group and the collective intelligence.
  • Direct correlation between the effectiveness of the group and their social sensitivity.
  • Groups with a higher proportion of women seemed to exhibit more collective intelligence, but this was attributed to the generally higher social sensitivity of women.
  • Key predictor of success in new tasks was conversational turn-taking.  Groups dominated by one or two personalities did not exhibit as high a collective intelligence.

Just five minutes, and completely safe for work.  Thanks to Samad Aidane, for mentioning Dr. Woolley’s work in his seminar on the Neuroscience of Leadership.

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About Dave Gordon

Dave Gordon is a project manager with over twenty five years of experience in implementing human capital management and payroll systems, including SaaS solutions like Workday and premises-based ERP solutions like PeopleSoft and ADP Enterprise. He has an MS in IT with a concentration in project management, and a BS in Business. In addition to his articles and blog posts, he curates a weekly roundup of articles on project management, and he has authored or contributed to several books on project management.