Enron - although an extreme case - is hardly the only company with a hollow set of values.

Teamwork requires some sacrifice up front; people who work as a team have to put the collective needs of the group ahead of their individual interests.

Team members have to hold each other accountable. If there's a meeting, all members have to commit to be present and to help one another; they can't just check out when they feel they're not getting any benefits.

Make sure that the people at the top are working together and there aren't divisions of labor. Don't have people working in silos; have them working across the team.

The truth is that intelligence, knowledge, and domain expertise are vastly overrated as the driving forces behind competitive advantage and sustainable success.

Although most executives pay lip service to the idea of hiring for cultural fit, few have the courage or discipline to make it the primary criteria for bringing someone into the company.

I have many times marveled at how I could feel so good about myself while eating peanuts in a middle seat on Southwest Airlines and yet feel so condescended to in first class on United.

Too many executives I've met over the years have the mentality of a bodybuilder; they've come to accept the idea that growth is synonymous with success.

Failing to engage in conflict is a terrible decision, one that puts our temporary comfort and the avoidance of discomfort ahead of the ultimate goal of our organization.

Smaller groups of people can establish trusting relationships.

Even though I wrote 'The 3 Big Questions for a Frantic Family,' my life is as chaotic as most people's.

Clients don't expect perfection from the service providers they hire, but they do expect honesty and transparency. There is no better way to demonstrate this than by acknowledging when a mistake has been made and humbly apologizing for it.

The fact is, employees cannot make breakthroughs if they can't openly and honestly disagree with their peers and their leader. Indeed, great leaders don't just permit conflict; they actively try to elicit it from reluctant employees as well.

Some companies simply aren't meant to be bigger than they are. They provide products and services that satisfy their customers in a way that pays the bills, produces reasonable profits, and allows them to keep their people employed and fulfilled. And there's nothing whatsoever wrong with that.

I have yet to meet members of a leadership team who I thought lacked the intelligence or the domain expertise required to be successful. I've met many, however, who failed to foster organizational health. Their companies were riddled with politics, various forms of dysfunction, and general confusion about their direction and mission.

At the heart of every great movie is conflict. It's the same with a meeting. There should be conflict and tension.

I coach soccer, and my wife and I are very involved in our kids' lives. Our family is busy with doctor appointments, soccer practice, school, work, travel, vacation... life.

Meetings are the linchpin of everything. If someone says you have an hour to investigate a company, I wouldn't look at the balance sheet. I'd watch their executive team in a meeting for an hour. If they are clear and focused and have the board on the edge of their seats, I'd say this is a good company worth investing in.

If you don't know what your family stands for and what your life situation is, you're in trouble.

What clients are really interested in is honesty, plus a baseline of competence.

People who have a sense of peace that their priorities are in the right place also have a sense of humility and a realistic view on life.

Too often, companies focus on systems and structures that facilitate cultural change at the mid-management level, overlooking problems closer to the top.

The best leaders over the long term are those who have a sound home life.

There is almost nothing more painful for a leader than seeing good people leave a growing organization, whether it's a priest watching a Sunday school teacher walk out the door or a CEO saying goodbye to a co-founder.

Teamwork is a strategic decision.

You have to build trust among team members so that people feel free to admit what they don't know, make mistakes, ask for help if they need it, apologize when necessary, and not hold back their opinions.

Every employee needs to know that there's somebody out there that they serve. And when we don't let people know that for one reason or another, we're depriving them of a fulfilling job.

I hate touchy-feely things.

When team members openly and passionately share their opinions about a decision, they don't wonder whether anyone is holding back. Then, when the leader has to step in and make a decision because there is no easy consensus, team members will accept that decision because they know that their ideas were heard and considered.

If you want to lead, you better love people. Even if you don't like them, you have to love them enough to tell them the truth.

Teamwork begins by building trust. And the only way to do that is to overcome our need for invulnerability.

Irrelevance is the feeling that an employee gets when they don't see how their job really makes a difference in someone else's life in some large or small way.

Conflict is always the right thing to do when it matters.

Success is not a matter of mastering subtle, sophisticated theory but rather of embracing common sen

I know that any group of people can become a team if they do the right things, but I came to realize over time that if you acquire or develop the right kind of people, that process of building a team is going to be much more effective and easier.

What's amazing is that so many leaders who value teamwork will tolerate people who aren't humble. They reluctantly hire self-centred people and then justify it because those people have desired skills.

I've spent many a long flight talking to flight attendants, trying to understand what kind of employment experience underlies such a consistent lack of concern for customers.

Meetings are usually terrible, but they shouldn't be.

Anybody, and any company, can have a big run of success once, but if you're going to repeat that over time, you need to be aware that you need to keep learning.

Hungry people almost never have to be pushed by a manager to work harder, because they are self-motivated and diligent. They are constantly thinking about the next step and the next opportunity. And they loathe the idea that they might be perceived as slackers.

Life is full of surprises: new opportunities come up; that's part of the fun - the adventure of life. The thing is, chaos doesn't allow us to enjoy the adventure.

Values can set a company apart from the competition by clarifying its identity and serving as a rallying point for employees. But coming up with strong values - and sticking to them - requires real guts.

Conflict is the pursuit of truth.

Whether we're talking about leadership, teamwork, or client service, there is no more powerful attribute than the ability to be genuinely honest about one's weaknesses, mistakes, and needs for help.

Team synergy has an extraordinary impact on business results.

When truth takes a backseat to ego and politics, trust is lost.

Home is most important in the long run.

When leaders throughout an organization take an active, genuine interest in the people they manage, when they invest real time to understand employees at a fundamental level, they create a climate for greater morale, loyalty, and, yes, growth.

At its core, all authentic growth depends on more customers wanting more of what your company offers. Any other drivers - pricing gimmicks, heroic marketing efforts, forced acquisitions - are ultimately destructive.