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The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  8,847 ratings  ·  580 reviews
There is a competitive advantage out there, arguably more powerful than any other. Is it superior strategy? Faster innovation? Smarter employees? No, New York Times best-selling author, Patrick Lencioni, argues that the seminal difference between successful companies and mediocre ones has little to do with what they know and how smart they are and more to do with how healt ...more
Hardcover, 216 pages
Published March 13th 2012 by Jossey-Bass
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4.16  · 
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 ·  8,847 ratings  ·  580 reviews

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Jan 18, 2016 rated it liked it
3 stars because I'm rating it as it is: a detailed checklist on how to build a cohesive team, set goals, communicate within the organization, have effective meetings, and so on (otherwise, I'd give it a 2 for an awful writing style, rushed last part and general consultant patronizing feel). It is like listening to a person you don't like at all, and yet knowing that there's some sense and truth in what he says. I'm focusing on the latter.
Nov 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013-book-list
Great book. Some takeaways:

"The seminal difference between successful companies and mediocre or unsuccessful ones has little, if anything, to do with what they know or how smart they are; it has everything to do with how healthy they are. An organization that is healthy will inevitably get smarter over time. That's because people in a healthy organization, beginning with the leaders, learn from one another, identify critical issues, and recover quickly from mistakes."

There are six critical ques
Ray Bliss
Feb 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed-general
The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni

The Advantage is about organizational health improvement. The four disciplines are building a cohesive leadership team, create clarity, over communicate clarity and reinforce clarity. That might not sound like much to you, but it’s everything. Having read almost all of Patrick Lencioni’s books, this is the first one I read that was not a parable. That made it a little difficult to start really getting into but once I reached page 20 I was hooked. What he presents
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
Disclaimer: I absolutely detest business books. For me, they are self-help books (which I also detest) for monolithic organizations. I don’t care about the habits of leaders; I don’t care about the dysfunctions of teams; I don’t care about strategy or process improvements. I read for good prose (which all business books lack), and I read for good stories (also, which business books lack). Every business book I’ve ever read I read because I was forced to read them; reading this book was for the s ...more
Joya Cousin
Jul 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction, business
This easy-to-read leadership handbook is Patrick Lencioni's follow up effort to his earlier and very effectively presented business fables. The subtitle - why organizational health trumps everything else in business - is a theme that resonates with me, and would with any manager who knows what attempting to lead in a dysfunctional organizational feels like. Nothing gets done until you fix the core issues.

Lencioni presents the deceptively simple 4 disciplines model, which is centered on building
Dec 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Lencioni is one of my favorite business leaders to learn from. "The Advantage" might pack the most punch in terms of the advice Lencioni offers, but being a personal fan of his fable style, it was my least favorite book of his to read. That isn't because it is poorly written, it is just written in a typical business style.

In "The Advantage," Lencioni asks the question: what is the most important thing a business can do? The answer to that isn't found in an organization's strategy, intelligence,
Jul 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leadership, business
My pastor had all the team leaders at our church read this book. Leadership organization and business books are not usually my cup of tea, though they can be quite helpful. This one was great! I see lots of lessons and principles in here to use in my full-time ministry as well as my volunteer work at my church. It is great for ministry leaders, but is not faith based. Actually, it barely mentions churches at all. So if you're a business leader, this book would be great for you too. Basically, an ...more
Bonnie Irwin
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Like most of Lencioni's books, this one was written primarily for business, but I find it helpful when looking at universities as well. If the organization is not healthy, it will fail, and there are some basic things that leaders can do to ensure that health. Lencioni argues that there are six fundamental questions to ask to determine how the organization sees itself, the first of which is "Why do we exist?" A simple question that I imagine will have many answers.

This one is going to stick with
Szymon Kulec
Nov 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
The book starts in an unfortunate "I'm the expert, let me share my stories supporting my theories" way. Recently, whenever I read a book like this, I get a rash. Fortunately, beside patting on his own back, author delivers value.

The value delivered in this book, would create a perfect mix with "E-Myth Revisited". This one is all about creating a clear mission statement for the company, dividing between strategy and tactics, making the company better. One could argue that some arguments and appro
David Wreesman
Oct 02, 2018 rated it liked it
I had read one of Lencioni’s other works—5 Disfunctions of a Team—and thoroughly enjoyed it. This one was pretty dry and underwhelming. I actually really resonate with his thesis regarding the importance of organizational health. I just found myself wanting more—more anecdotes, more insights, more something.
Romans Karpelcevs
Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: leadership
Great book, short and very useful. Rhymes a lot with The Five Dysfunctions of a Team (and probably with other books of his), but isn't too repetitive to be boring.
Will definitely re-read and will start by implementing some of the things in the small(-er) team, not execs.
Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
A great outline of how to structure a healthy organization. Though there are many great examples and tips, it is not an instruction manual... just an excellent first step toward creating a strong healthy organization.
Sep 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Simple ideas organised and communicated in an easy to read. Could have been a bit more concise.
Omid Milanifard
Nov 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Excellent book. Simple but not easy. If you are an organizational leader or manager, I strongly suggest this book.
Paul Giertz
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This should be a must read for all executives and senior managers.
Mike Arvela
3,5 stars or so. Easy to agree with, yet to a large degree so general that it’s a bit easy to dismiss as ”just another business book that contains some really good advice nobody takes.” So, I guess the question would be, how to make the stuff happen in practice. Nice and compact enough.
Max Lapin
Jul 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
A serious book. Kind of unusual for Lencioni to switch from fables to academic style. Nevertheless, I liked it though somewhat less than others. Feels a bit synthetic as if Patrick aimed for a more mature readers in a more crowded genre.
Eddy Espinosa
Feb 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Great book on helping create strong organizational health, communication and teamwork!
Martin Chalupa
Mar 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: soft-skills
I would say this book falls into the category of books which are good to introduce you into the topic. However, if you are already exploring psychology, how motivation works, learnings and how other soft skills work I don't think there will be too much new information you can get out of this book. It can help you refresh your memory but I haven't expanded my knowledge. If you want to start learning those things I think this would be a solid start. There is a couple of recommended sources in this ...more
It is a good and handy book, could be an actual handbook in a lot of cases. It still leaves me wanting something, just not sure what. Maybe that's inherent in topics when the ball is now in the reader's court, but maybe something more than that. I'm glad I read it, while not sure how much practical use this advice will see.
Nithin Thompson
Oct 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Check out my review here:
Rusty Fulling
June 2012 - Was a little disappointing after reading his other books that were fable style. This was definitely a more "how to" traditional approach of many business writers. While it is a good stand alone business management book - don't compare it to his previous writings.
There is a competitive advantage out there, arguably more powerful than any other. Is it superior strategy? Faster innovation? Smarter employees? No, New York Times best-selling author, Patrick Lencioni, argues that
Jan 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: leadership
Very easy reading, very easy concepts. But then love is an easy concept, but hard to get right. Creating a healthy workplace is hard work with simple, even common sense steps to take to get there. I'm sure many readers will react with a "duh" followed by "oh wait, I don't really do that. I totally neglected that."

While this is a book about leadership I couldn't help but read it as someone who left a job because of a lack of leadership. It helped me shape a new story for my experience at the U.
David Shelton
Aug 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
The Advantage
The Advantage is a concise, helpful book which focuses on helping organizations to function effectively. The thesis of the book is that the single greatest advantage that any company can achieve is organizational health (Pg 1). For this reason it is the greatest opportunity for improvement and competitive advantage that currently exists in the market place, even above technical knowledge and innovation (Pg 3). The book is made up 4 disciplines of a healthy organization as well as a
Nicholas Owen
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoy Patrick's insight and this book is packed. My only problem with this book is that I have listen to him speak so many times so a lot of the information has been repeated. This was my first time reading one of his non fables and I would have to recommend them over the advantage. He really drive home how important it is to have clearly defined objectives.
Summer Miller
Jun 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: leadership
First off, I'm a huge Patrick Lencioni fan. I recently read The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else In Business, and this book reads differently than his typical writing, in that it's not written in fable format. Being a fan of his typical style, I still found this book very engaging, and extremely thought provoking. It actually builds upon concepts and principles in his other books, and includes so many great approaches for leaders.

When I read any of Lencioni's books, I
Andrew Murch
Oct 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'm a big fan of Lencioni. The Advantage was the only one of his books I had yet to read. After remedying that, I'm reminded why I read his other 7 books in a 4 week period 5 years ago. In terms of management and organizational health, this guy knows his field.

This book is a summation of his entire organization health model. It is basically all his other books in one volume. Unlike his others, there is no fable here. He jumps straight into the model from page 1. He argues from the outset that o
Aug 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
AWESOME read. One of the best books I've read on leadership, management, and just generally how to MANAGE PEOPLE & ORGANIZATIONS. Very simple, yet profound ideas and practices that are not that hard to immediately put into practice. Reading this convicted me even more how important leadership and organizational behavior/culture issues are - but more importantly helped put some "meat on the bones" for me, so to say. Helped me to realize, by putting context to many real-life organizational beh ...more
Jonathan McIntosh
Aug 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: leadership
More pastors and church planters should read this book. Simple and helpful. Form a healthy team. Know why your organization (or church) exists. Let those reasons for existence inform every decision you make. Over communicate those reasons and values to every one in your org.

Boom. Simple... but why do we often ignore doing the tasks to build organizational health?

I think most pastors will be surprised that there are gospel answers at the bottom of organizational disease. Fear of man and lack of
Erin Weigel
Oct 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you're interested in organizational health, psychology, and leadership, this is a nice, quick primer. I enjoy that it's a *very* fast read, with clear action points you can immediately put into place at your organization.

The thing I find less useful is that it's very geared toward C-suite executives. I have little chance of influencing how they organize and relate with one another. So, even if you do the "right and healthy things" at your spot in the org, I'm not convinced it will be useful u
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Patrick Lencioni is a New York Times best-selling author, speaker, consultant and founder and president of The Table Group, a firm dedicated to helping organizations become healthy. Lencioni’s ideas around leadership, teamwork and employee engagement have impacted organizations around the globe. His books have sold nearly three million copies worldwide.

When Lencioni is not writing, he consults to
“The only way for the leader of a team to create a safe environment for his team members to be vulnerable is by stepping up and doing something that feels unsafe and uncomfortable first. By getting naked before anyone else, by taking the risk of making himself vulnerable with no guarantee that other members of the team will respond in kind, a leader demonstrates an extraordinary level of selflessness and dedication to the team. And that gives him the right, and the confidence, to ask others to do the same.” 6 likes
“If people don’t weigh in, they can’t buy in.” 6 likes
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