Recent quotes:

Is diversity the key to collaboration? New AI research suggests so -

The team wondered if cooperative AI needs to be trained differently. The type of AI being used, called reinforcement learning, traditionally learns how to succeed at complex tasks by discovering which actions yield the highest reward. It is often trained and evaluated against models similar to itself. This process has created unmatched AI players in competitive games like Go and StarCraft. But for AI to be a successful collaborator, perhaps it has to not only care about maximizing reward when collaborating with other AI agents, but also something more intrinsic: understanding and adapting to others’ strengths and preferences. In other words, it needs to learn from and adapt to diversity.

Tight-knit teammates may conform to each other's behavior -- ScienceDaily

After analyzing the data, the researchers found that participants who felt more closely connected to their teammates and identified strongly as part of the team were more likely to engage in risky behaviors like binge drinking, marijuana use and hazing if they believed their teammates were already doing these activities. Additionally, athletes who belonged to teams that as a whole reported being especially close were more likely to say they would conceal a concussion to remain in play. Graupensperger said the findings -- recently published in the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology -- suggest that teams should try to find positive ways to encourage bonding between players. "The silver lining is that we did find that conforming does also work similarly for positive behaviors," Graupensperger said. "This finding also generalizes to behaviors like volunteering. So our challenge going forward would be to try to reduce pressures to conform to negative behaviors while still encouraging identifying closely with your teammates."

All together or all apart

The researchers then had the teams complete a decision-making activity (in this case, act as top management for a fictional Hollywood studio tasked with green-lighting the production of one or more screenplays) and then answer a survey about the experience wherein they rated other team members. "We learned that if you want to have a clear leader emerge, you are better off having them all located face to face or all working remotely," Reeves said. "It's when you start mixing and matching -- some on site, some virtual -- that's when the real confusion comes into play."

Mike Nichols on team work

We had one actor [in Spamalot]—we had to cut his big scene, and he went around moaning and pissing and grumbling. Mike said, I see I have to give you my asshole speech. He said, Look, you can either be an asshole and leave or you can get with the team and understand this is not about you. This is about making the show better. And the guy was lovely and adorable ever after.

Just Feeling Like Part of a Team Increases Motivation on Challenging Tasks - Association for Psychological Science

Across five experiments Stanford psychological scientists Priyanka B. Carr and Gregory M. Walton concluded that even subtle suggestions of being part of a team dramatically increased people’s motivation and enjoyment in relation to difficult tasks, leading to greater perseverance and engagement and even higher levels of performance.