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Team Tips are short email messages sent quarterly by Michael R. Van Dyke, highlighting an aspect of effective teamwork behavior. They go to individuals and businesses who recognize the value of good teamwork and appreciate a reminder from time to time.

If you wish to receive Team Tips directly in the future, please provide an email address to with SUBSCRIBE as the subject heading. This Serengeti Enterprises mailing list is NOT shared with any other business or individual.

Here is an example of previous Team Tips message :

In the quest to improve the quality of any teamís output, we often hear that we need to "work smarter, not harder." Author Daniel Goleman ("Working with Emotional Intelligence," Bantam Books, 1998) provides food for thought on WHAT exactly is "smarter." Well, of course, "smarter" means more knowledgeable, right? So to work "smarter," we need to send the team for more technical training, right? Perhaps not! Goleman suggests that improving Emotional, not technical, Intelligence is the key to increasing performance.

Emotional Intelligence is the set of interpersonal skills that allows people to work well together. These include many of the traits that Mom encouraged in us to "play nicely" with our friends: trustworthiness, self-confidence, initiative, adaptability, commitment, empathy, communication skills, and cooperation. Perhaps we did learn everything we needed to know about teamwork in kindergarten - we just forgot it when we went to work!

Emotional Intelligence skills are critical for success in business. According to Goleman, a recent national survey of employers shows seven skills rated Ďmost importantí in entry-level workers. Six of the seven are competencies in the emotional realm: communication skills, creative response, personal motivation, interpersonal effectiveness, and leadership potential. Golemanís research at Harvard University shows a remarkable consistency across jobs, organizations, and industries: superior Emotional Intelligence is the single most significant indicator of outstanding performance.

Not only does increased Emotional Intelligence pay off in outstanding business performance by individuals and teams, training in emotional competencies represents a good return on investment. Goleman notes that IQ (intellectual intelligence) changes little after the teenage years, yet Emotional Intelligence in adulthood can improve dramatically with training. Focusing your training budget on interpersonal skills training pays big dividends by way of increased work output, less tension in the workplace, and more satisfied workers. Additionally, Emotional Intelligence represents a personal value-added skill set for both managers and employees. These skills are portable assets preparing people for advancement opportunities and as hedge against job displacement.

For additional information on the advantages to your organizational team "playing well with others" and free consultation on interpersonal training options, call Michael R. Van Dyke at (703) 850-1951 or email

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