Team of Teams by General Stanley McChrystal is an examination of the process he began of restructuring the Joint Special Operations Command management style, from a rigid command structure to a cooperative team comprised of smaller specialized teams. While fighting Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), General McChrystal noted how the United States and coalition militaries were efficient war-fighting machines, but they were not adaptable or effective against the seemingly disordered AQI. In 2005, after a particularly destructive terrorist attack at the opening of a sewage plant near Baghdad, McChrystal began considering whether the efficient structure was actually hindering the counterinsurgency, preventing them from responding to threats in real time and delaying the capture of AQI leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
Modern military management originated at the 1900 World's Fair, when Frederick Winslow Taylor revealed his work in steel production efficiency. Taylor believed that there is a right way to do any given thing....
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If you're considering reading "Team of Teams" this summary is worthwhile. If you're looking to gain the same value as reading the whole thing, forget it. I had the chance to hear McChrystal last week and was pleasantly surprised. Instead of hearing a review of his leadership and military experience (interesting but not terribly useful) he gave what I considered valuable insight into some of the changes many organizations (including terrorist and military organizations) are going through.
I enjoyed this book, it is simple, understandable, and directly applicable as new methods to bring results, build trust, build up leadership equity, and build in agile response to project deliverables.
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