The 5 to 1 ratio, "it’s the secret to high-performing teams — and strong marriages." It's a classic feedback guide worth revisiting to do a self-check for the performance of your own business community.
The factor that made the greatest difference between the most and least successful teams, Heaphy and Losada found, was the ratio of positive comments: “I agree with that,” or “That’s a terrific idea”
to negative comments: “I don’t agree with you,” and “We shouldn’t even consider doing that,” that the participants made to one another. Negative comments could go as far as sarcastic or disparaging remarks.
The average ratio for the highest-performing teams was 5.6, nearly six positive comments for every negative one. The medium-performance teams averaged 1.9, almost twice as many positive comments than negative ones. Low-performing teams were at 0.36 to 1, almost three negative comments for every positive one.
The research, conducted by academic Emily Heaphy and consultant Marcial Losada, examined the effectiveness of 60 strategic-business-unit leadership teams at a large information-processing company. “Effectiveness” was measured according to financial performance, customer satisfaction ratings, and 360-degree feedback ratings of the team members.
Related posts by Deb, :
3 Success Factors for High Performance Teams, and What Gets In the Way (Includes M. Losada research)