What is Teamwork Intelligence?

Teamwork Intelligence is the purposeful and intentional relational process of team members together raising one another to higher levels of motivation, collaboration, compassion, and performance.  It’s deceptively simple: in order to build a high-performing team you have to create the conditions for team members to commit and unify—to coalesce into a single organism.  Such oneness is not inevitable; it is forged methodically and deliberately.

The Teamwork Intelligence approach is a disciplined way of thinking about and building a high-performing team; it involves discussing teamwork as both a system and a set of processes.  This allows us to explore the context in which teamwork occurs, the characteristics of the coaches and players, individual and team values, experience, the timing of events, the history in which teamwork is embedded, and how teamwork intelligence plays a role in individual and collective successes and failures.   Teamwork intelligence delves into team work as a process and as a way to understand the person (both players and coaches) embedded within a process.

To think about teamwork as a system, we need to consider the inputs, such as training for teamwork intelligence, the process, which we can describe as the system and the context in which the players and coaches interact, and the outcomes, which are the levels of motivation, performance, and well-being of the players and coaches.   To leverage the process of teamwork intelligence I have designed five basic considerations that must be operationalized:  (1) the four dimensions of team building, and the associated eight roles of teamwork; (2) the three mindsets of a team player; (3) the three layers of a team player; (4) the five core concerns of every team member, and (5) the five forces of performance-enhancing relationships.  By optimizing these five considerations—the teamwork intelligence system—we are able to enhance each individual’s vital force and, in turn, the collective force of the team.



The Teamwork Intelligence workshop is based on a decade of research performed by The Academy for Sport Leadership.  The evidence strongly suggests that teams that organize and embed 20 principles and concepts are highly likely to build high-performing teams.  By drawing on evidence from our research and social science we know we can help you release the potential of every student-athlete to be an intelligent part of the team building process.

Teamwork Intelligence Workshop (Click Here)

“Dr. Cory Dobbs’ materials have played an integral part in opening my eyes to proper leadership and team building, for me, my coaches, and our players.”  -Mike Gottsch, Head Football Coach and Asst. Athletic Director, Sapulpa HS (OK)

“In working with The Academy for Sport Leadership, I have continued to learn more and more about leadership and team building and how to foster and grow student-athletes.”  -Keri Sanchez, Head Women’s Soccer Coach, Claremont McKenna College (CA)

“Cory Dobbs truly ‘gets’ leadership and team building for today’s young people.”  -Jane Albright, Women’s Basketball Coach, University of Nevada

Please feel free to download, distribute, and discuss the Scrimmage articles below with your coaching staff and team.  Some of the articles are tailored to the coach, others to the student-athlete.  Please let us know if you need something on a particular topic.

Choosing Success Every Day (Student-Athlete edition)
Developing Leadership Capacity
Do Your Players Trust You
Everybody Wants to Be Somebody (Student-Athlete edition)
Getting Beyond the Obvious
Case 1 Bravely Leading in a New World
Seven Simple Truths to Becoming a Better Leader(Student-Athlete edition)
Shaping the Leadership Learning Environment
Generating the Right Mindset
Prepare to Win
(Student-Athlete Edition)