Usually the first we try to do when we're brought in to discuss building a culture around self directed work teams is to convince the organization not to do teaming. We know, it sounds counter intuitive for a teaming firm like ours to convince the potential client not to do teams. However, we take that approach for two reasons:
1. Does the client know of the long-term, hard work and dedication that is needed in order to implement teams as a culture shift and are his/her senior leadership team on board? Are they okay with giving more authority and autonomy to their workers? Are they in it for the long haul (usually about 3-5 years for full transformation)?
2. We are passionate about teams and we fully believe in their ability to transform an organization and the people of that organization. With that in mind, we see ourselves as guardians of teaming. We hold the concept and the idea of teams very close to our heart. We're not about to let it become the flavor of the month for an organization, something to quickly dismiss when the organization has hit the muck in the middle with teaming.
Once we've established an understanding through multiple meetings, examples and trainings with an organization, we begin to peel back the layers of the onion that is teaming. In that peeling of the teaming onion we introduce the organization to a rigorous series of team boot camps, a customized launch sequence of teams or mini business units, the star point concept, establishment of high performance meeting structure, team protocols and charters, as well as other teaming cornerstones.