Creating The Perfect Team – The Google Way

Google has collected endless amounts of data, conducted countless studies, spent millions of dollars and logged thousands of hours all in the name of trying to better understand their employees. One initiative was to try and understand what makes a team effective. Specifically, Google wanted to know why some teams excelled while others didn’t. The study was called Project Aristotle, and they gathered up some of Google’s best talent to determine how to create high-functioning teams.


The results of Project Aristotle may forever change how you go about assembling a team. Before the study, Julia Rozovsky, Google’s people analytics manager, felt that the best teams came from compiling the best people. The “best of the best” would surely be the way to go. As she later stated, “We were dead wrong.”


Google assembled organizational psychologists, sociologists, statisticians, engineers and researchers to attack this issue. For over two years, Project Aristotle studied 180 Google teams and analyzed over 250 different team attributes, looking for the magic dream-team formula, but they came up empty. Nothing was standing out to ensure you would be putting together an outstanding team.


They stumbled across some research by psychologists and sociologists that focused on what are known as “group norms”: the traditions, behavioral standards and unwritten rules that govern how teams function when great perks like flexible hours, remote work, professional development, catered lunches – the list goes on. Happy employees are the best employees. Smallbiz Technology, 2/12/2019