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Tuesday, March 8, 2016

How to Become the Smartest Group in the Room

Minds for Business
Association for Psychological Science
Originally published January 28, 2016

Here are two excerpts:

You’re a manager tasked with putting together a team to tackle a new project. What qualities do you look for in creating such a crack team?

Research from psychological scientists Anita Williams Woolley (Carnegie Mellon University), Ishani Aggarwal (Fundação Getulio Vargas), and Thomas Malone (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) finds that the smartest groups don’t necessarily have the highest IQs – rather, what they do tend to have are excellent social skills.


Instead, their studies revealed that social skills were much better than IQ at predicting a group’s collective intelligence. Social perceptiveness was measured by people’s ability to judge others’ emotions based on pictures of their eyes. Groups with members who were highly socially attuned — that is, good at reading emotions — were more collectively intelligent than other groups.

The results suggest that social perceptiveness allows group members to communicate more effectively, ultimately allowing the group to capitalize on each member’s skills and experience.

The article is here.