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The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable | [Patrick Lencioni]

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable

In keeping with the parable style, Patrick Lencioni 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. Succinct yet sympathetic, this guide will be a boon for those struggling with the inherent difficulties of leading a group.
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Publisher's Summary

In keeping with the parable style, Patrick Lencioni 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.

Building a cohesive team is not complicated, declares Lencioni. Departing from the dry, theoretical writing of many management books, he presents his case in the context of a fictional organization, and in doing so succeeds at communicating his ideas. The scenarios are recognizable and can be applied anywhere teamwork is involved, whether it is a multinational company, a small department within a larger organization, or a sports team. At the end of the story, the main points are summarized, and clearly expressed suggestions and exercises are offered to help bring about change. Concise and easy to follow, this program is recommended for anyone who is a member of a team that needs improvement.

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team is also available in print from Wiley.

Executive Producer: Karen DiMattia
Producer: John McElroy
© 2002 Patrick Lencioni
(P)2002 Random House Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A gripping analysis of what makes teams work effectively. This fine work is a must-read for any leader that has come to grips with the fact that no one makes progress - much less succeeds - alone." (James Amos, president and CEO, Mail Boxes Etc.)

What Members Say

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Performance
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  •  
    Mark Raleigh, NC, USA 01-18-03
    Mark Raleigh, NC, USA 01-18-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Clear Headed Guidance on Building Teams"

    This book uses a story about a newly created management team as the backdrop for it's lessons. If you liked the clear and concise story approach used in "Who Moved My Cheese?" or "Fish!" you'll enjoy this audiobook. There is a good summary at the end which is well worth sitting down and taking notes from.

    21 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bruce Wayne Minneapolis, MN United States 09-09-05
    Bruce Wayne Minneapolis, MN United States 09-09-05 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
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    "Great approach to the topic"

    At first I was annoyed by the fact that 80% of the book is a fictional account of an executive team working through the dysfunctions. But I've found that the story (and lessons) has stuck with me much better than had this been a straight non-fiction leadership book. I look forward to more books from this author.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shannon Dumas, TX, USA 02-11-03
    Shannon Dumas, TX, USA 02-11-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "Entertaining Education"

    The business fable is entertaining education. A great listen. I wish Patrick Lencioni had many more.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Niket Parikh Baltimore, MD 10-27-05
    Niket Parikh Baltimore, MD 10-27-05 Listener Since 2004

    amazinNick

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good concepts and great medium to convey them..."

    Truly enjoyed the story. Leadership concepts conveyed in the book are, quality, basic ideas and to the point, re-iteration and real-life scenarios have been plugged in very well.
    The usage of a storyline to convey the theme is quite effective for some folks, giving the content more "spice", other readers/listeners who do not like story based books might want to skip out on this one. The narrator does a great job as well, kudos to him and the authors.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Singapore, N/A, Singapore 02-02-03
    Mark Singapore, N/A, Singapore 02-02-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent. Engaging. Uplifting"

    I strongly recommend this book. Situations were fictional but realistic. This is my first "non-fiction" fiction book and I like it! This is filled with positive energy.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Will Englewood, CO, USA 04-04-05
    Will Englewood, CO, USA 04-04-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "The BEST book on teamwork available!"

    One of the great things about fables is the ability to identify with characters. Lencioni makes it easy to gauge where you are in your success and/or failure in building an awesome team. You will NOT be an effective leader without overcoming the 5 dysfunctions of a team.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason Erie, CO, USA 04-08-05
    Jason Erie, CO, USA 04-08-05 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Improving yourself and your team"

    This book was both enjoyable and educational. Patrick Lencioni lays out the principles needed to create great business teams. I'm having everyone at work listen to it and they find it just as intersting and helpful.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gensho Lynnwood, WA, USA 08-07-04
    Gensho Lynnwood, WA, USA 08-07-04
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    "Simply stated"

    Lencioni does a wonderful job of characterizing the different personalities that are found within most organizations. You'll recognize co-workers in an instant! Lencioni breaks down the pitfalls of a team to five key points...and hits the nail on the head. I've begun to build my management team around these five principals and have experienced great success.

    Double thumbs up!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RCon 06-08-03
    RCon 06-08-03 Listener Since 2000
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
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    "Good ideas about good, smart leadership"

    So many business-related books cannot push our buttons if they do not hit us where we are at the time. This book is no exception. If you are a lone-wolf with a savior complex, this book will never meet a need for you. If you have found that team-leadership is crucial to the long-term, real success of your organization, then you will get a great deal from this book. These disfunctions are very real, and affect us all very similarly. Lencioni puts it in good, understandable terms with workable ideas and solutions that anyone can use for a foundation for change.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Bolgiano Takoma Park, MD 03-26-03
    Mark Bolgiano Takoma Park, MD 03-26-03 Member Since 2000

    Data Scientist

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A coherent framework for thinking about teams"

    This was a worthwhile listen - short, sweet, and a great distillation of what most experienced team leaders have in their head as common sense. The five dysfunctions are real, readily applied in the real world, and I have yet to find a colleague who didn't immediately appreciate this way of looking at how people work together to solve problems.

    Constantly wondering why your team isn't as effective as it should be? Listen to this book. I did, and it really helped me in how I lead my team (I am VP-Technology for a professional services firm). This is the first audio title, after 3 years of audible.com, that made me want to go out and get the hard copy of the book for my office reference bookshelf.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
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  • Helen Dunnett
    7/9/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Learn why building trust, builds your team"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team to be better than the print version?

    I loved the audio edition so much I bought the book. The book contains some great practical exercises at the end of the book to do with your team to build trust, to manage tough topics etc, so while I will probably listen to the book again, I use the print copy for reference.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team?

    There were many lightbulbs moments in the book, but a couple that made me smile were when the CEO had her first face-to-face challenge with her sales manager, who had purposely booked a customer meeting in the middle of her first management retreat to avoid going. The way she managed it was poetic. Then other was when she told the story to her team about her own career mistakes. As a young consultant she hadn't understood the importance of The Team, and through her own naive logic promoted the team's high performer who was also the top team destroyer. She got fired.


    What does Charles Stransky; introduction by Patrick Lencioni bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    I always prefer audio books that have been recorded with the author. It shows a level of care for the audience that I greatly appreciate. In this case Patrick recorded the introduction to set the scene, and having the voice and the picture, really helps me connect with him.

    Charles Stransky does a great job telling the story (even if his English accent is terrible ;) ) His voice skills helps the listener focus on the meaning of the content rather than having to imagine the scenerio. Great job.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I was totally inspired after reading this book. I immediately starting discussing the concepts with my colleagues and I have the book with me as a constant reminder. It's not something that I can fully take on board in one go, so I plan to go through it again on my next road trip, to cover the key topics more thoroughly.


    Any additional comments?

    Highly recommend it. The storytelling approach really worked for me to understand how to apply the theory. Thumbs up!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Browns View
    UK
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Compelling listen"

    Thought provoking listen, which had me hooked. Most of the book revolves around the goings on in a fictional - and, of course, dysfunctional - company; many of the scenarios raised in the will resonate. (The last part of the book, which goes through each of the five dysfunctions in a more formal way perhaps works less well in audio-book form.)

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Kirsty
    BASINGSTOKE, United Kingdom
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Powerful"

    Love the way this book is written as a story. It makes it easier to digest. It provokes some powerful questions about the teams you work in but provides the insight to help make them. It's logical and easy to understand. It's a must if you want to take your team to the next level and beyond.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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