BLOG


01/10/2017
 
Posted By: Admin DreamingCode

Workstream Team Size

Congratulations on being selected as a Transformation Workstream Leader.There are a lot of things you'll need to start working on as you prepare.Your Transformation Leader has briefed you on the workstream you will be leading, and now you have to prepare for your team meeting.So how do you decide who to invite and what to do on that first team meeting? It is helpful to go over this and many other details with an experienced Workstream or Initiative Leader.Their experience will help you succeed.Here are some additional thoughts on team composition and size.

Team size – Team members are expected to attend every team meeting and be actively engaged throughout the transformation initiative.Read that last sentence again and consider the implications.If you only need to have a colleague support the project for a specific need within a short time frame, do not make them a team member.They should be used as a subject matter expert (SME) and brought in only as needed.Be respectful of people's time and only request what the effort needs to succeed.That said, if the "team" consists of you and the person who has a cubicle next to you that is forced to listen to you grouse about the workstream transformation, you will fail.As great as you are, and as much as you are willing to "do whatever it takes", one person working alone cannot move an effort this large forward at the pace necessary to reach successful completion.So how many people should there be?That will vary based on the size and needs of the workstream in scope, but I suggest the Two Pizza Rule.If your team is so small that one pizza is more than you need to feed the entire team lunch, it is probably too small.If two large pizzas are not enough, it is probably too large. (Do provide a salad as well; keep that team healthy!)That works out to be about 4-10 people including yourself (you were planning to have some lunch too I hope).This range allows for enough representation across the workstream to have the process knowledge needed, but keeps the size manageable as you try to align calendars for meetings and other team needs.Of course there are some workstream transformation efforts that had teams that were larger and succeeded, but this is a good guideline for the majority of cases.

Team Composition – Who should those team members be?Think about the workstream your project is focused on.You need to have representation from people across each of the key areas in the process. Supervisors can be very helpful in bringing history and context to why things are the way they are in a process – having them on the team is important – but they often don't know about all of the work-arounds people have had to create to make the process run.We also need information from the "work-around experts" because those work-arounds are major clues to the process' problems. We want to deliberately design those problems out in the transformed workstream.If we aren't aware of them, we are likely to carry the underlying causes that created them forward. As an added bonus, buy-in and successful implementation of the changes your team will identify is improved by having not just supervisors but also the people who do the day to day processing directly involved.


© Rath & Strong Management Consultants LLC, Rath & Strong, Ltd. All rights reserved.