Bryan’s Blog: Your team needs another team

In my last blog I spoke of your organisation as a market place where you and your team compete for resources. Those resources include money, people and the most valuable resource, people’s time. What you need is another team competing on your behalf. A team of advocates located in the key business units you want to engage with to ensure the valuable resources you need, you get.

In Seth Godin’s book Tribe he describes how he did just that in 1984 at the age of 24 after he joined software company Spinnaker. He was charged with acquiring science fiction stories, turning them into adventure games and getting them out by Christmas. He had no staff and only three programmers from the pool of 40 working hard on key projects. He needed many, many more to meet Christmas deadlines.

He started a twice-weekly newsletter about his team’s quest. He printed it and dropped it into staff mailboxes and within a month six more programmers were working on his project in their spare time. Then it was 20 and soon all were either assigned to his project or moonlighting on his project.

They shipped five products before Christmas, all were highly successful and saved the company.

While this is an extreme version it is a fantastic example of what can be achieved.

So ask yourself, are the staff in business units your team needs to engage with avoiding you, agnostic or are they advocates, even activists on you and your team’s behalf? If they are not activists, you need to design how you wish to work with them to drive the right behaviour, provide them with a fantastic first experience and then engage, engage and engage with them to turn them into advocates, even activists for you and your team.