Peer Pressure

Published: April 3, 2014

It took nearly three years for the Team Clock Institute to publish the soon-to-be-released interpersonal suite of products. The assessment sort cards and action workbook unfolded quickly since they are both anchored in the trademarked principles and methodology of the Team Clock. The book, Useful Pain: Why Your Relationships Need Struggle, took over two years to complete. While the author had his own obstacles, the primary source of delay was the decision to invite critique.

The decision to request feedback only from a pool of notoriously critical beta readers was deliberate. Every ounce of input prompted a rewrite. Nowhere in the exchange was the reinforcing praise designed to make an author bask in the glow of artistic creation. Instead, pre-publication readers seized the opportunity to improve the tool and make it accessible to an audience of peers. It is impossible to accomplish this solely within the confines of an author’s brain.

Writing begins as a hobby and the book becomes a friend. Just about the time the author establishes an exclusive relationship with his or her creation, a valuable team of partners swoops in and transforms the book into a monster that tries to destroy its creator. Now the author has a choice: fend off the peer pressure or buckle to contrary opinion. It’s simple – live happily in isolation or painfully as a member of a team.

Choose the pain. It’s useful.

Photo of Steve Ritter, the co-founder of The Center for Team Excellence

Steve Ritter

Steve Ritter is an internationally recognized expert on team dynamics whose clients include Fortune 500 companies, professional sports teams, and many educational organizations. He is on the faculty of the Center for Professional Excellence at Elmhurst University where he earned the President's Award for Excellence in Teaching. Steve is the former Senior Vice President, Director of Human Resources at Leaders Bank, named the #1 Best Place to Work in Illinois in 2006 and winner of the American Psychological Association's Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award in 2010. Steve provides ongoing workplace culture consultation to many thriving companies including Kraft Foods, Advocate Health Care, Kellogg's, the Chicago White Sox, AthletiCo, and Northwestern Mutual Financial Network.