Commentary

Study: Teamworkís Overrated

If you really want your company to be innovative, emphasize individual achievement. So says the new study “Individualism-Collectivism and Group Creativity”:

The findings may support the view that creative companies need to encourage differences rather than build teamwork, which leads to conformity, said Barry Staw, professor at the University of California at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and co-author of the study. “The more you emphasize collectivity and team membership and orientation, the lower is the creativity,” Staw said. “So much of creativity is being different, being willing to deviate and take chances and be the odd person out.” U.S. workplaces have moved toward teamwork and away from individualism for decades, originally having borrowed techniques from Japanese business models, experts say.

More here. Perhaps another argument in favor of telecommuting?

Ted Balaker is an award-winning filmmaker, journalist, and founding partner of Korchula Productions, a film and new media production company devoted to making important ideas entertaining.