Building a high performing team using the Team EI Survey

Kurt Lewin, known as one of the modern pioneers of social psychology, theorized that once a group is established, it can produce a product or service that is superior to what the members could have produced individually. 


Research conducted by Vanessa Druskat and Steven B. Wolff shows that one of the factors contributing to this outcome is team emotional intelligence. An emotionally intelligent team is defined as having a team culture that builds a productive social and emotional environment that leads to constructive interactions, collaborative work and team effectiveness. Such teams maintain a healthy balance of task and relational processes.


The Team EI Surveydeveloped by Druskat and Wolff is designed to foster Team EI. It covers three areas:

  • Team Fundamentals, which serve as the foundation for a team to be well organized and clearly structured
  • Team EI Norms, which foster the emotional and social competencies of the team members
  • Team Social Capital, which emerges as a result of the successful implementation of the first two areas. It includes psychological safety, team identity, and constructive dialogue.

Approach to developing a high-performing team

  • First, the Team EI Survey is conducted to capture the current level of the team in three areas: Team Fundamentals, Team EI Norms, and Team Social Capital.
  • Once the Team EI Survey is completed, the results are analyzed and action steps are developed to foster the Team Fundamentals and EI Norms.
  • Successful implementation of the defined steps will strengthen the Team Social Capital. This will bring the team to the state in which it performs at its best.