Organisational Change Management Volume 2

Teams from Outside

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Introduction

. Bringing together a team, ie a high functioning group of people, from outside an organisation is different from forming a new team from within the organisation. Using a team from outside allows for a quick ramp-up of talent as against the time it would take to develop a team from scratch internally.

. On the other hand, the way it is managed can "make or break"the situation. There are 4 independent stages that need to be handled correctly for a lift-out team to work effectively.

Stages

1. Courtship (prior to lift-out)

. Team leader and organisation's senior management discuss how to achieve clarity on opportunities, organisational goals, strategy, relationships with external stakeholders, etc.

. The hiring organisation needs to understand the assumptions about the team relationships.

. Team leader holds discussions with potential team members to determine their interests in joining the new organisation. Initial discussions are not about employment packages

2. Leadership integration (post lift-out)

. Need to understand organisational/team requirements and culture. Need to answer questions, such as how the team is to be structured in the new organisation?

. A hiring organisation should be wary of using lift-out teams to re-invigorate the existing culture or to facilitate change

. Adequate resources must be provided by hiring organisation

. Continual support of top management is vital

3. Operational integration (making sure that the team functions and performs as required)

. Team leader provides clear direction and secures vital operation resources so that team members can do their daily work and succeed in a new environment

. The team needs a degree of autonomy, ie a clear objective but latitude on how to achieve the objective

4. Full cultural integration

. Having established credibility through operational success, the new team can achieve full cultural integration with the hiring organisation; its members now work seamlessly with colleagues in a co-operative and complementary single unit. Need to carefully manage expectations of all staff, especially existing staff (including possible feelings of alienation and demoralisation).

. Team members need to build relationships with other groups and culturally socialize in the new organisation. There will be some fears in the hiring organisation about newcomers "defecting"from another organisation, newcomers do not bring new accounts as expected and so on.

(source: Boris Groysberg et al, 2006)


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