Description: The team no longer feels challenged, or misses the excitement of new teams and projects.
Have the team hold a workshop with the manager present to do the following:
- Review team accomplishments to date.
- Review the mission and goals to find more challenging ones:
- For each, ask:
- “Is this interesting?”
- “Is this challenging enough that we could fail?”
- If either answer is “no,” revise the mission or goal. Consider these questions:
- “Can we raise the stakes—increase the performance standards we are shooting for?”
- “Are there company wide needs no one else is addressing that the team can take on, even if only vaguely related to current team duties?”
- For each, ask:
- Review responsibilities: Are there administrative tasks the team can take over from the team leader or manager?
- Consider a campaign to spread teaming throughout the organization.
Consider having team members or the team as a whole “cross-train”—learn other roles while teaching their own roles to the “teachers.” Besides improving morale, this practice provides greater flexibility for responding to absences, emergencies, and changing workloads:
- Roles—If the team has not been rotating team roles (facilitator, scribe, etc.), propose that it create a plan for those who have been in those roles to provide training and to begin rotation.
- Jobs—Many teams have improved performance by training members to do other members’ jobs. Work with the team to determine:
- Which jobs are cross-trainable.
- What training resources would be required, if any: books, videos, classroom or online training, etc.
- A schedule for on-the-job training by team members after the initial training is completed.
- Functions—Is there another function in the company related to the team’s whose responsible team could use help? If so, arrange a joint meeting with the other team to explore the possibility of your team cross-training with it and providing backup.
Learn more benefits and another technique under “Cross-Training” on the Full Scale agile™ site.
- In a meeting, ask the team: “What should being on a team do for the team members themselves? Notice the word ‘should’—do not limit yourself to the advantages you’ve noticed already, though we want to include them, too.”
- List them on the board as people talk, and then combine items.
- Ask: “Now, within the team, which of these advantages are:
- “In place already?
- “Coming along?
- “Not in sight?”
- Label each item according to their answers.
- Say: “Let’s take each of the ones that are not in place yet, one at a time. What can we do to get those in place?”
- Establish objectives and action items to do so.
If the team has been relying on the same solution creativity and decision-making techniques, review those topics and introduce new techniques to change things up.