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The following exhibit identifies the five most important attributes of effective and productive teams.

Keeping in mind the above attributes, effective team systematically solve problems using a five-step process:

  1. Define and clarify the problem, including reasons why it is a problem and the benefits of resolving the problem
  2. Generate alternative solutions along with the pros and cons of each alternative
  3. Evaluate and compare the solutions, and select the most attractive one
  4. Develop an implementation plan

But not only are they systematic, effective teams:

  • Don’t take short-cuts
  • Have someone gather and write-up the input from team members prior to meeting(s)
  • At the meeting, begin by reading the notes prepared in (b)
  • Don’t expect to complete all four steps (1) – (4) in one meeting

This may seem a bit cumbersome but this process and approach are used by Jeff Bezos – CEO of Amazon Inc. and Jack Dorsey – CEO of Twitter.

This approach is equally effective developing a strategic action plan for seizing opportunities.