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« Is it passion or obsession? Energy or drama? @harvardbiz | Main | Teaming IS a Core Job Task, Not Something Else »

August 08, 2011

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Lisa:
Well said. You know when I look up into the night sky and see a star I seldom see only one. What makes the night sky so magnificent is all the stars together.
David

Thanks for the interesting thought. there is a difference between a star performer and a star player. The former can be too eager to be on stage and at the centre of attention, whereas the latter can sacrifice oneself for the good of the team. If you get a great performer and player in one, then you have a super star!

David and Dragon - I love the metaphor of the night sky David! And Dragon, your distinction between a performer and player is a good one. We want people who use their talents for the greatest good!

Individuals can fail and are easily defeated. Great teams are much harder to beat.

Whether by their own choosing (leaving for greener pastures, quitting, etc.) or external forces (ailments, family emergencies, etc.), star performers can not always be counted on. Teams are much more robust and backup each other. This is why the greatest "stars" are actually servant leaders - serving the teams and building up sustainable success rather than personal fame and fortune.

Thanks for sharing Lisa. As always, your wisdom is spot-on.

It is not enough to recuit stars and good performers, it is the leader's job to bring out the best of each individual - helping stars shine brighter and turning good performers to great performers.

The purpose of any organization is to accomplish as a group what we cannot accomplish as individuals. Even a star needs to keep that in mind.

The most surprising part of the HBR posts were the comments - it was like being spectator to a bar brawl. I am always a little suspicious of a position that needs to be backed by name-calling, personal attacks and the like.

David - I love the first line of your comment, "The purpose of any organization is to accomplish as a group what we cannot accomplish as individuals." Yes, this is at the core of what an organization IS.

Ben, I agree that teams offer an inherent strength that we cannot achieve as individuals.

Dragon - Yes, this is the leader's job - all leaders/managers. To bring out the best of the team.

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