The data is in: How we say something is more important than what we say.
Research conducted at MIT’s Human Dynamics Laboratory has shown that how people communicate within teams is the most important predictor of a team’s success.
Not only that, these patterns of communication are as significant as all other factors combined: intelligence, personality, skill and the content of what is being discussed.
While it seems counterintuitive to suggest that how we communicate is more important than what we communicate, MIT’s research has demonstrated across multiple industries and teams that the key to high performance lies not in the content of a team’s discussions but in the manner in which team members are communicating.
The original article, “The New Science of Building Great Teams,” was published in the Harvard Business Review in April and outlined three key elements of effective communication:
Other key findings: