Teams, Not Stars, Are the Key to High Performance  - CLEO Skip to main content


When the people who work in a business own an equity interest in the success of the venture, they have a clear reason to work cooperatively together and help each other to produce positive results. They may be less inclined to engage in the sort of backstabbing, turf-building and other dysfunctional behaviors that can plague many traditional companies in which the employees have no ownership stake. In short, they show teamwork.

So what? It’s all well and good that a shared ownership stake may promote a team orientation, but does teamwork necessarily translate into superior business results? Isn’t having a few super-producers – star performers – really more important than a bunch of ordinary people making nice to each other?

For the answer to that question, we don’t have to rely on hunches, or instincts, or a handful of individual cases. It turns out that some careful research has been done on this point. Data were gathered from a wide range of companies in an effort to settle the question of which is more important in generating superior performance: teamwork, or ‘stars’? The answer, hands down, turned out to be teamwork.