30 Aug · 4 min read
Putting together a group of individuals with various functional specialties so they can use their knowledge to accomplish a shared goal is the simplest description of creating an Agile cross-functional team.
Have you ever thought about why the majority of businesses operate in silos? What's the point when the sales team only wants to increase sales, the accounting team is keeping the books in order, and the customer success department is concentrating on a different industry? The marketing team is solely focused on advertising the company. Each team is performing its duties effectively. However, your company is veering in too many ways simultaneously. Which is undesirable.
Now, if you could dismantle the organizational silos and show everyone the "big picture," or the organizational aim, that would be much better. In other words, combine the teams together to more effectively pursue a goal rather than having each team work alone and put forth moderate efforts. Cross-functional teams are focused on achieving this.
You can experience what it's like for an organization to operate in silos if you've ever called a company with a straightforward question, like an airline or a healthcare facility, and found yourself getting transferred from department to department, feeling no closer to your answer after twenty minutes than you did when you first made the call.
The consumer will find this to be a frustrating experience, and your business will have missed an opportunity to forge a long-lasting bond with them. Even though an organization performs a wide range of tasks, all of these tasks are intended to serve the needs of the client, thus they should cooperate to offer a thorough, satisfying customer experience.
Bringing individuals with various perspectives together can enhance problem-solving and result in wiser, more sustainable decisions. Cross-functional teams work together to maximize the use of time, money, and effort rather than vying for resources in order to increase customer satisfaction and advance organizational objectives.
1. Determine the abilities and skills required
The first step in creating a cross-functional team is figuring out what the group's goals are. Determine if the team should concentrate on a single project or a number of initiatives for your company. You can determine the skill sets that are required inside the team, such as sales, finance, development, and IT, once the team's purpose and frequency have been made clear.
2. Define the desired roles
Teamwork plays a key role in the unique dynamic of a cross-functional team. Finding people who will perform effectively in a cross-functional context is your job as a manager. Consider hiring applicants who have a variety of skills, can work well with others and are excellent communicators.
3. Decide on solid leadership
Every cross-functional team requires a capable leader who is aware of the contributions made by each professional specialty to the project's completion and success. The team's daily organizational requirements will be handled by this leader, who will also provide management with reports as needed. Select a person who is equipped to handle specific difficulties encountered by cross-functional teams, such as overcoming potential communication obstacles and upholding orderly workflow. These leaders must also be extremely organized because they are responsible for determining the strategy for each project and making sure that each team member completes their allocated tasks.
6. Create a precise budget
A cross-functional team's overall budget must be allocated among several crucial areas. The team needs to be aware of the type of budget it has and how it is distributed among its members. Consider scheduling a meeting with the team early on to go over budget distribution. You may also discuss budget modifications with the team to keep everyone updated if they occur during the project. Team members can produce greater results with reduced costs when they work closely using an open budgeting system.
7. Establish project timetables
Project schedules set deadlines for tasks to be completed and guarantee that each stage of the project moves forward. They also aid the team in improving efficiency and reducing the time between steps in the cycle. As the manager, you can collaborate with the team leader to set reasonable goals and benchmarks for progress at the start of the team's formation and to adjust timetables as necessary as the project progresses.
8. Create channels for communication
The team must have established channels of communication from the start that spell out how the team members will cooperate and work together. Depending on the nature of your team, your team's communication plan may include creating shared online documents, assigning a preferred method of contact, such as email or instant messaging, and setting up regular meetings, either in person or remotely.
Cross-functional teams make good commercial sense. They can facilitate quicker and more effective business operations and even serve as a "trial run" for new projects before bringing on a new full-time workforce to work on them. I hope this post has given you a fresh sense of direction and clarity as you work to create a new cross-functional team or improve an existing one. Want to build your dream team, head to the Amplifyre OpenBench. In case of any queries- do reach out to us.