Three Characteristics of Smart Teams, and Two notes to self

I am interested in building great teams but I am even more interested (or samely interested in different ways) about building great communities. I could also argue that, at best, those are the same thing. Regardless, this was an interesting story in NYT that Jason Wehmhoener pointed out to me that talks about some research research into what makes great teams.

Ultimately, equality of participation (in multiple ways) and emotional intelligence (across the board) outperforms pure IQ. I’m happy with these findings.

  • Note to self, explore “Theory of Mind” more deeply.
  • Note to self, document some of the ways to communication and interpret complex emotional states online.

First, their members contributed more equally to the team’s discussions, rather than letting one or two people dominate the group.

Second, their members scored higher on a test called Reading the Mind in the Eyes, which measures how well people can read complex emotional states from images of faces with only the eyes visible.

Finally, teams with more women outperformed teams with more men. Indeed, it appeared that it was not “diversity” (having equal numbers of men and women) that mattered for a team’s intelligence, but simply having more women. This last effect, however, was partly explained by the fact that women, on average, were better at “mindreading” than men.