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Google's Research Found Five Attributes that Make Teams Effective - Project Aristotle

Google completed a study on effective teams several years ago and found these five factors contribute significantly to a team's success.

- Psychological safety – it is safe to take risks and be vulnerable

- Dependability – things get done to expectations or standards

- Structure and clarity – members have a clear role, goals and plans

- Meaning – the work is personally important to the team

- Impact – team members think their work matters and create change

All teams understand this when explained; it is logical and makes sense. But teams in some circumstances remain ineffective.


People's traits every day make or break the team. These traits lead to behaviour that creates the culture, and culture is almost everything.

Discovering the traits any team will adopt as their own, is best done away from the office, where the team explores;

- what is working well,

- what could be better, and

- what is left unsaid (the difficult stuff that needs to change)?

These conversations crystalise what is important and why. Initiatives can then follow to improve the effectiveness of a team.

At the end of a team day away, quietly revisit Google's research and see if your team now feels it can be this. If the answer is YES, this was a day well spent and if almost, you will need to explore what will close the gap. It is ok to have a couple of bites at the cherry.

Google's project Aristotle is embodied in my Workshop Services.


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