Leaders include variety. Why? Because new management research shows that it makes for better results and helps guard against false confidence.
Kate Sweetman at Fast Company: Researchers
invited a couple hundred members of fraternities and sororities to participate in a problem-solving experiment. The students were given 20 minutes to read a murder mystery and deduce the most likely perpetrator out of three suspects. Individually, only 44 percent of the students got it right, which is slightly better than chance. The students were then sorted into groups of three, all from the same fraternity or sorority, and were given 20 minutes to come to agreement on the most likely suspect. After a few minutes, a fourth member was added to the group - sometimes from the same fraternity or sorority, sometimes from a different one. If the new member came from a different fraternity or sorority, the group performed objectively better then the totally homogeneous groups (75 percent vs. 54 percent correct), and members with incorrect guesses were much more likely to change their minds. Nevertheless, the homogeneous groups perceived themselves as having more confidence, consensus, and effective interaction.
She links to a Boston Globe article that reports on some other interesting results from social science. Check it out.