Reading List for Intentional Teams™

Adams, Marilee, Change Your Questions, Change Your Life, Ten Powerful Tools for Life and Work,  Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2004

The first edition of Marilee Adams’s book introduced a surprising, life-altering truth: any of us can literally change our lives simply by changing the questions we ask, especially those we ask ourselves. We can ask questions that open us to learning, connection, satisfaction, and success. Or we can ask questions that impede progress and keep us from getting results we want. Asking “What great things could happen today?” creates very different expectations, moods, and energy than asking “What could go wrong today?” Many readers reported that they found themselves asking better questions before they even finished reading the book! In this extensively revised second edition, Adams has made the story even more illuminating and helpful, adding three new chapters as well as three powerful new tools. Change Your Questions, Change Your Life is practical yet simple, giving readers an entertaining, step-by-step guide to a technique that will transform their personal and professional lives. Great results really do begin with great questions – Marilee Adams shows you how to ask them!


Bellman, Geoffrey M. and Ryan, Kathleen D., Extraordinary Groups: How Ordinary Teams Achieve Amazing Results,  Jossey-Bass, 2009

Two leading experts present a new approach to help teams nurture extraordinary experiences and excel. Bellman and Ryan argue that an extraordinary group emerges when a group experience satisfies two or more core needs that members intuitively bring to any group they join. Based on extensive research, the book presents the Group Needs Model to help anyone nurture extraordinary experiences in their groups and achieve outstanding results.

Introduces a new approach for creating extraordinary experiences and results in teams including the key characteristics that define exceptional teams and the Group Needs Model for encouraging extraordinary experiences and team success.


Collins, Jim, Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don’t, Harper Business, 2001

Built to Last, the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the very beginning. But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness? For years, this question preyed on the mind of Jim Collins. Are there companies that defy gravity and convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? And if so, what are the universal distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great? In this book, Collins answers this question. Compelling and seminal, this book is well worth reading.


Covey, Stephen R., Principle-Centered Leadership, Simon & Schuster, 1991

Covey explains the laws of security, guidance, wisdom, and power, and discusses how seven-habits practice and focus on these principles will result in personal and organizational transformation. He reminds us that personal and organizational success is hard work, requires unwavering commitment and long-term perspective, and is achievable only if we are prepared for a complete paradigm shift in our perspective. 


Hammond, Sue Annis and Mayfield, Andrea B., The Thin Book of Naming Elephants; How to Surface Undiscussables for Greater Organizational Success, Thin Book Publishing, 2004

Using NASA’s tragic accidents and Enron’s bankruptcy as examples of the price of not having open, constructive dialogue, the book shows how great companies create an environment that encourages and listens to input from all levels of the organization. This book explains the role of assumptions and multiple realities; why surfacing assumptions is so important; how to have constructive dialogue; why arrogance, hubris and smart talk gets in the way of constructive dialogue; and what strategies you can use to name the elephants in your organization.


Katzenbach, Jon, R., and Smith, Douglas K., The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization, Harvard Business School Press, 1992

Comprehensive and proven effective, The Wisdom of Teams is the classic primer on making teams a powerful tool for success in today’s global marketplace. Although published in 1992, this book is still very much up-to-date in its applicability.


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