Master of Science in Organizational Dynamics Theses

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Submitted to the Program of Organizational Dynamics in the Graduate Division of the School of Arts and Sciences in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Organizational Dynamics at the University of Pennsylvania

Advisor: Charline S. Russo


This capstone examines the adaptation of an existing team building model proposed by Patrick Lencioni (2002) in The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable. I present a case study of the adaptation of that team building model within the context of a United States Public Health Service (PHS) disaster medical response team, the PHS-2 Rapid Deployment Force (PHS-2 RDF). It provides background on the history of PHS and origins of the part-time, volunteer, disaster medical response teams used by the Department of Health and Human Services. I demonstrate how the lack of a formalized officer and team training program provided the impetus and opportunity for a team to adapt a team building model in real time. The study examines the challenges faced by the team in the model adaptation process. The adaptation process resulted in a customized version of the team building model for ongoing use by the executive staff in carrying out their leadership responsibilities within the team. The team did this as a means to aid in the growth of a team culture. I show how the model can be used in the future.



Date Posted: 30 May 2012