The Critical Success Factors

Successful teams, i.e. those that deliver the expected results to their stakeholders, exhibit many characteristics that set them apart from those groups of individuals who have been assembled but fail to complete their assigned tasks or purpose.  Many authors have written about the attributes of successful teams as well as the dysfunctions of those teams that have been identified as having failed in their efforts.

When we began our study of what makes a team successful, we looked to many of these authors for guidance.  However, our major source of knowledge came from our first-hand experiences in working with a wide range of teams, both successful and not so successful.

Our early research efforts resulted in identifying a handful of characteristics that we call the “critical success factors” of teamwork.  As we continued our studies, we added to this list until we had evolved a list of eight factors that we believe must be considered by team sponsors, leaders and members as they form and carry out the team’s primary purposes.

  1. Team Purpose/Focus
  2. Team Sponsor’s Role
  3. Team Leader’s Role
  4. Platform of Mutual Trust
  5. Effective Collaborative Debate
  6. Individual Commitments
  7. Personal Accountability
  8. Engaging Barrier Removal

Our blog postings are organized around these CSF’s to help bring focus to the thoughts and ideas expressed here.


About Tom Samson
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