Book review: “Overcoming The Five Dysfunctions of a Team”

1. Building trust

2. Mastering conflict

3. Achieving commitment

  1. Extract and explore team ideas — Good leaders drive team commitment by first extracting every possible, idea, opinion and perspective from the team. This is why I believe that good product leaders and managers need to be able to facilitate these open ended conversations or brainstorming sessions, especially since product people need to be able to influence without authority.
  2. Stick your neck out and decide — Once you’re comfortable that all options and perspectives have been explored, then the team leader needs to step up and make a decision. I know from experience that this is easier said than done, because our instinct is to try and get everybody to be happy about your decision. However, it’s unlikely that you’ll please everyone with your decision and that’s fine, as long as you explain the decision and why you made it — especially to those people with an opposite view. Lencioni refers to this process as “disagree and commit” and suggests the “Commitment Clarification” exercise to ensure that everyone in the team is clear about what exactly has been decided in the meeting or conversation (see Fig. 4 below).

4. Embracing accountability

5. Focusing on results





Product at Intercom, author of "My Product Management Toolkit" and “Managing Product = Managing Tension” — see

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Product at Intercom, author of "My Product Management Toolkit" and “Managing Product = Managing Tension” — see

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