Latest News: Technology |  Celebrity |  Movies |  Apple |  Cars |  Business |  Sports |  TV Shows |  Geek

Trending

Filed under: News

 

Sick Of Sports: Why Rock Bands Are A Better Metaphor For Work Teams

Jan 10 2014, 10:11am CST | by

1 Updates
Sick Of Sports: Why Rock Bands Are A Better Metaphor For Work Teams
Photo Credit: Forbes
 
 

Comments

Full Story

Sick Of Sports: Why Rock Bands Are A Better Metaphor For Work Teams

Sports teams are the canonical metaphor for teamwork. We try to “pick winners” to score “slam dunks.” Team leaders “coach” team members and then “send in heavy hitters” who “step up to the plate” and sometimes “take one for the team,” all the while “keeping their eyes on the ball.” Books by celebrity coaches preaching teamwork and leadership lessons from sports are bestsellers.

The language we use to talk about our world shapes how we think about it, and using (or overusing) specific metaphors can lead us to understand our work life in partial ways. Are sports teams the most appropriate examples for today’s work teams?

In sports there are clear winners and losers. The rules of the game rarely change. The organizational cast of characters—teams, leagues—is stable. Great team performance hinges mostly on real-time execution. And customer needs and expectations don’t change, nor are they focus of the team. Winning is.

In contrast, for many organizational teams, great performance hinges on their ability to be creative and adapt to an environment that is in constant flux. For most teams, meeting the needs of their customers—whether internal to their organizations or out in the marketplace—is more important than beating their competition. In fact, successfully satisfying their customers is the way to beat the competition. And doing that means responding rapidly to challenges and opportunities.

In the past few years I have been investigating what rock bands teach us about teamwork. Like any business, rock bands create new products (concerts, recordings, videos) that they sell in the marketplace. Like business teams, they have to satisfy a variety of stakeholders: their customers (audiences), their peers, and their critics. Rock bands must be able to recognize revenue-making opportunities and even create new ones where none existed before.

Unlike sports teams and like most organizational teams, rock bands do their work in a fast changing environment, where customer aesthetic and cultural values are in constant flux. Rock bands are aware of their competition. After all, consumers have a finite budget for rock shows and they certainly have a finite capacity for listening. At the same time, bands forge partnerships with other bands. They work together to create new musical styles, produce festivals, and collaborate on exciting products that increase the pie for everyone. In other work contexts, teams both compete and collaborate to maintain the health of their industry.

There are many ways in which rock bands differ from the typical organizational team. They are less bound by organizational structures. They sometimes make decisions based on artistic rather than commercial considerations. But they still offer an exciting source of inspiration for creative teamwork. Every time we attend a show or hear a song on the radio, we witness the result of a high-performance creative team.

Work is conducted in an increasingly complex world. The language and metaphors we choose to think about our work should reflect this complexity. As we know from the prevalence of cheating scandals in both boardrooms and locker rooms, there is a price to placing winning above all else. As exciting as it is to watch a great sports team, organizational teamwork is more complex than the playing field. By focusing on winning and losing, the sports metaphor narrows what we can ultimately accomplish.

So next time you have an idea, consider “riffing” on it. At your next meeting, have a “jam session” and get “into a groove.” And next time you meet with a client, “play it by ear.”

For more about the intersection of rock n’ roll and business follow me on the top of this page or on Twitter, title="Ruth Blatt">Facebook, or Google.
/>

Source: Forbes

 

You Might Also Like

Updates


Sponsored Update

Update: 1

Centurion Corp acquires Penang land to develop workers dorm

Source: The Edge Singapore

Centurion Corporation said it has agreed to acquire a piece of land located at Seberang Perai Selatan in Penang, Malaysia, for RM6.3 million ($2.45 million). This marks the group’s first acquisition in another state of Malaysia outside of Joho ...
Source: The Edge Singapore   Full article at: The Edge Singapore Aug 12 2014, 9:21am CDT
 


Advertisement


More From the Web

Shopping Deals

 
 
 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/31" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

 

Comments

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Adrianne Palicki Cast in &quot;Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.&quot;
Adrianne Palicki Cast in "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
Lucy Lawless also cast in role for the upcoming season.
 
 
Leo’s Fortune Game Review
Leo’s Fortune Game Review
The Leo’s Fortune game app is an exciting adventurous game which has become more famous because of its incredible graphics and story theme of the game. The game was launched earlier this year and several thousand users have already downloaded this game either on their mobile phones or their tablets.
 
 
iLands Game Review
iLands Game Review
The iLands is a creative game app released this year for Android mobile devices and tablets. Thousands of people have already downloaded this game in just a few months. The game is known to get the best of the creative abilities of the player. The game was first released for the Facebook users and later in a few months also got released for the Android devices. Further, the iLands game app is played with great zeal and zest on desktop through Facebook games.
 
 
QuizUp Game Review
QuizUp Game Review
QuizUp app has been proclaimed by some to be the world’s leading trivia game. This commendation is actually valid as it has been ranked to be the best trivia application on the online based store Google Play in 6 countries which include Canada and the United States. If you have an urge to get a little brain power challenge, this is the solution.
 
 
 

About the Geek Mind

The “geek mind” is concerned with more than just the latest iPhone rumors, or which company will win the gaming console wars. I4U is concerned with more than just the latest photo shoot or other celebrity gossip.

The “geek mind” is concerned with life, in all its different forms and facets. The geek mind wants to know about societal and financial issues, both abroad and at home. If a Fortune 500 decides to raise their minimum wage, or any high priority news, the geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants to know the top teams in the National Football League, or who’s likely to win the NBA Finals this coming year. The geek mind wants to know who the hottest new models are, or whether the newest blockbuster movie is worth seeing. The geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants—needs—knowledge.

Read more about The Geek Mind.