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Attention Design Thinking and Communication students:
You need to log in to the DTC version of the teamwork assessment.

Teamwork Assessments

Teams generally prefer to get right to work on the project they’ve been given.  This is unwise.  In hindsight, many teams trace their failure(s) to not having shared expectations and specific ground rules.  Research shows that teams should start with the question “how will we work together?” not “what’s the right answer to the project?”

Setting shared expectations for your team, checking for effective teamwork, and making adjustments along the way is also essential. The exercises that follow do just this.  They are built from best practices that are commonly found in industry; they will help your team reduce risk by identifying typical teamwork problems at the individual and group levels and by offering you a process for solving those problems.   The bottom line is that your group’s teamwork will affect the final quality of your project. 

You should know, however, that success is not guaranteed because teamwork is a human activity that, according to noted author Pat Lencioni, involves trust, conflict, commitment, accountability, and attention to results.  Simply put, these exercises challenge you to think and work together differently than you have in the past, but only you can decide to adapt your behavior in a manner that improves team performance.

We hope that these materials aid your learning about teamwork and leadership, and make it easier for you to identify specific aspects of effective and ineffective teamwork.

You should use these exercises in order.  They are self-explanatory so that you can facilitate your own group discussions and complete the exercises independently. 


Adam Goodman

Todd Murphy
Associate Director

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McCormick School of Engineering & Applied Science

The Center for Leadership serves the Northwestern community. Its academic programs are offered through the McCormick School of Engineering & Applied Science.