Summary of The Ideal Team Player

Looking for the book?
We have the summary! Get the key insights in just 10 minutes.

The Ideal Team Player book summary
Start getting smarter:
or see our plans




  • Comprehensive
  • Applicable
  • Engaging


Best-selling business author Patrick Lencioni’s handy guide, which explains the top three traits of superior team players, comes cloaked in a story that also tells you how to hire the right people and how to help them become better team players. This informative business fable flows easily and ends with strong instructions and guidelines. Lencioni has spent the past 20 years consulting with quality teams and publishing business fables. While sometimes repetitious, this tale is plausible, helpful, engaging and entertaining. Lencioni is known for packing lots of lessons into accessible corporate storytelling, and here he pitches a good one for the team. getAbstract recommends his illuminating parable to executives who recruit, manage and rely on superior teams.

About the Author

Patrick Lencioni is founder and president of The Table Group, a leadership and team development firm. His 10 business books, which have sold nearly five million copies worldwide in multiple languages, include The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, The Truth about Employee Engagement, Death by Meeting, and other “leadership fables.”



The “Three Virtues” of “Ideal Team Players“

To hire great team players, evaluate prospective hires in light of the requirements of effective teamwork, which demands a foundation of “vulnerability-based trust, healthy conflict, active commitment, peer-to-peer accountability and a focus on results.” Then, hire people who have the three traits that all good team players share: “humility, hunger” and “people smarts.”

An employee or prospective hire who lacks these qualities isn’t a promising candidate to be a good team member. All three virtues are vital to teamwork, as this business fable demonstrates:

Hiring Ideal Team Players

Jeff Shanley had devoted 20 years of his life to working in Silicon Valley. He had been wanting to make a career change, when his uncle Bob Shanley told him about a change he had to make. Due to a recently diagnosed heart problem requiring surgery, Bob had to retire as CEO of Valley Builders (VB), the Napa Valley contracting firm he’d founded. Jeff asked Bob to appoint him to the position and Bob agreed to make Jeff VB’s new CEO.

Jeff took over the management of a firm with a workforce of more than 200 people...

More on this topic

By the same author

The Advantage
Getting Naked
The Three Signs of a Miserable Job
Silos, Politics and Turf Wars
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team
Death By Meeting
The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive
The Five Temptations of a CEO

Customers who read this summary also read

The Leadership Killer
Humble Leadership
Work Inspired
A Leadership Kick in the Ass
Extreme You
The Art of Connection

Related Channels

Comment on this summary

  • Avatar
  • Avatar
    M. T. 9 months ago
    Here is something from behaviour or ethics in Japanese firms. Yours
  • Avatar
    j. c. 1 year ago
    Such an important summary when bringing new people on board. It's all about culture and the right fit. Anyone can learn skills - what's important is that they are HUMBLE, HUNGRY, & PEOPLE SMART!