1/MAKE EVERYONE’S WORK MEANINGFUL
Your workers cannot possibly open up to the rest of the company if the firm’s overall purpose is not clear or appears to run counter to the team’s own objectives. Reframe your team’s goals, aligning them with the corporate strategy: how do your employees fit into the global value chain? Each worker should have a well-defined vision of his or her role in the business. Volvo, for instance, motivates its support services by telling them in detail how they help make a diff erence to customer satisfaction. Unite employees around a common goal: Generate a feeling of belonging and ownership based on strong feelings that go beyond the team itself (pride in being part of the company, a sense of duty, etc.). Show your employees that they are working on something that is bigger than they are. Empower your teams: once the targets have been set, ask your employees to describe their tasks in relation to the corporate strategy. If they all understand where they are going and why, it will be easier for them to seek out useful resources themselves outside the team (ideas, knowledge, know-how, and so on).
2/DEVELOP A CULTURE OF OPENNESS
How can you make your team more open and accessible to the rest of the company? Set an example: make it clear in your role as a manager that you are not in competition with other teams in the company. Suggest to other managers that you organize joint events where you can introduce your respective teams and projects so that everyone is aware of the types of expertise that are available beyond their immediate circles. Support mobility and give employees the opportunity to mix and share ideas freely. Do not hold your best people back in your team: offer them the chance to acquire new skills in other departments, and turn them into ambassadors for your team in the rest of the company. Put someone in charge of external relations: appoint an employee who will be responsible for representing your team to everyone else working in the organization. His or her mission will be to promote your projects externally (on an internal blog, social network, etc.) and to convey information internally.
To read the article in full :
Based on The Silo Effect, The Peril of Expertise and The Promise of Breaking Down Barriers, de Gillian Tett (Simon & Schuster, September 2015) and The Cleveland Clinic Way: Lessons in Excellence from One of the World’s Leading Health Care Organizations by Toby Cosgrove (McGraw-Hill, January 2014).