Prof. Randall Peterson - London Business School - SPARK 2019 by Sideways 6

SPARK 2019 | High-performance teams in 2019

Prof. Randall Peterson, London Business School, reveals what it takes to create a high-performing team.


What does it take to create a high-performing team? Teamwork is becoming increasingly complex and demanding – how are teams evolving within this environment?

In this fascinating talk from Sideways 6's SPARK 2019 event, Randall Peterson, Professor of Organizational Behavior and Academic Director of the Leadership Institute at London Business School, reveals all.

Q & A with Randall Peterson

Sideways 6's Chris Sheen caught up with Randall post-SPARK to ask some more burning questions – we've transcribed their conversation for you here (we're nice like that!).

Hey Randall, thanks again for your engaging presentation at SPARK 2019! We have a few more questions we'd love to ask, and we'll start with a super easy one – what’s been your favorite team to be a part of?

America’s Youth in Concert, back when I was young. We were an orchestra from around the USA that toured Europe. Or a close second is the start-up team at TalentSage. It’s intense, but also intensely fun! 

They sound like exciting teams to be in! Leading on nicely, how would you define 'collaboration' in one sentence?

Working with others to achieve something that none of us could do on our own. 

And, therefore, how important are shared values and culture within every team?

Very important. Most people know it, although we don’t always do something about it. But a great leader will ensure we all understand the priorities.  

Something that particularly interested us in your talk at SPARK was the idea of psychological safety within teams – why is this becoming increasingly important?

Psychological safety has always been important, but we are now realizing that too many great/novel/crazy ideas are never shared because people are worried what others will think of them. 

We found something similar in our own research, too! Which book would you recommend for anyone looking to improve collaboration within their team/organization?

‘Smart Collaboration’ by Heidi K. Gardner. And when the book I am writing now comes out, that one too! 

They both sound like excellent reads! And, finally, who would you love to see talk at SPARK 2020? 

Red Godfrey-Sagoo. She has spent her whole life getting volunteers to collaborate effectively while doing crisis management work. She will have some great advice on how to get people working effectively together. Or if not Red, could you ask Emma Watson to talk about her causes? 

We'll try our best! Thanks, Randall. 

To find out more about Randall and his research, check out his official website at

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