The Ideal Team Player: How to Recognize & Cultivate the Three Essential Virtues by Patrick M. Lencioni

Recommended by MMM Podcast Host, Kyle Knowles. In The Ideal Team Player, Patrick Lencioni argues that there are three essential virtues that all great team players share: hunger, humility, and smarts. Hunger refers to a person’s drive and ambition, humility to their willingness to put the team first, and smarts to their ability to think critically and solve problems. Lencioni argues that these three virtues are essential for creating high-performing teams because they help ensure team members are motivated, collaborative, and capable.


The book is divided into three parts. The first part introduces the three virtues and explains their importance. The second part provides a framework for assessing whether or not someone possesses these virtues. The third part offers advice on how to create a culture of team players in your organization.

The Ideal Team Player is a helpful book for anyone who wants to improve their teamwork skills. It provides a clear and concise framework for understanding what makes a great team player and offers practical advice on developing these qualities.

Here are some of the key takeaways from the book:

  • Hunger: Great team players are driven and ambitious. They always look for ways to improve their performance and help the team succeed.
  • Humility: Great team players are selfless and put the team first. They are not afraid to admit they are wrong and always willing to help others.
  • Smarts: Great team players are intelligent and capable. They can think critically and solve problems.

To be a great team player, you should strive to develop these three virtues. You can do this by setting ambitious goals, being willing to help others, and learning new things.