The New Team Structures of the Digital Age: Implementing Successful Teams to Improve Business Performance

Today’s businesses are constantly striving to adapt to the ever-changing digital world, which means the structure and dynamics of work teams are changing also. We’ve become virtual teams that require new skills and ways of interacting with each other.  The struggles in keeping up with evolving technology and seamlessly blending it into our workforce bring about new challenges on top of issues that companies are already facing, such as employee engagement, culture change, and process improvement. In a recent Deloitte study of more than 7,000 companies, 92% cited organizational restructuring as one of their key challenges, making it the #1 trend of the year, according to Josh Bersin.

These new team structures, or “network of teams” as Deloitte labels them, are creating strategic challenges among leaders as to how to coordinate efforts to share information and align team members, especially as they move away from the more traditional structure of hierarchies. Four keys to overcoming these challenges and improving business performance were identified by the research:

  1. Provide team members with guidelines and value systems to help them decide what to do, how to make decisions, and what is acceptable behavior. To do so, companies first need to determine or assess their mission, culture, and values.

  2. Promote transparency of goals and group projects. Ensure that teams have clear goals, understand the financial objectives, and can easily communicate with other team members about the project’s progress.

  3. Create an environment that promotes feedback and free flow of information so that employees can share information about what’s working or not. This allows leaders to respond and work with the team to strategize solutions.  

  4. Reward people for skills and contribution, not “position.” Positional leadership is being replaced by growth and career progression based on employees’ skills, alignment with values, followership, and contribution to the company as a whole.

These types of changes within organizations and their HR departments have been slowly occurring over the years but now we are seeing accelerated change with the reinvention of performance appraisals, company hierarchies, and career paths, as rapidly evolving digital technology is becoming the primary force for determining the shape of our teams and ultimately the structure of organizations.

What types of organizational learning support the four keys to developing better functioning teams and improving business performance? Zoe Training offers the following programs to help organizations and their teams understand and integrate best business practices:  

Strategic Visioning

In this program for leaders, the elements of successful mission/vision statements/charters are explored, including the “what” – defining the needs of the organization is attempting to fulfill; the “who”–  which part of the market the organization is attempting to service; and the “how” – how the organization will attempt to achieve its goals.

Understanding Group Culture & Improving Team Effectiveness

This program answers the question: What is the culture we want to have within our organization and what do we need to do to get there individually and as a team? During this interactive, facilitated working session, participants practice interpersonal communication skills such as active listening, explore ways to work more effectively on teams, and develop personal action plans.

Creating a Peak Performance Team

This program trains all levels of employees to maximize teamwork within their departments, whether they be managers/supervisors or individual contributors.  Discussion focuses on the "circle of influence" that employees have, regardless if they have the power and authority to act. This interactive, practical format helps improve work flow and communication among team members, assess problem situations, determine a course of action and ultimately increase productivity at the bottom line.

How to Accelerate Team Success & Keep It There: 7 Key Strategies for Team Effectiveness

In this hands-on, facilitated half-day workshop, team members are introduced to these 7 key strategies for team effectiveness: 1) clarity of purpose, values and goals; 2) team agreement on how all members support team success; 3) knowledge of team member strengths and how to leverage; 4) defined roles and responsibilities of all team members; 5) processes and procedures for getting work done (i.e., meeting management, decision making, problem solving, feedback, evaluation, performance measures); 6) trusting and open team relationships; and 7) recognition and reward systems for producing results.

Marathon Leadership

This highly interactive and entertaining session helps participants overcome the leadership challenges they face – including leading a changing workforce and applying best practices for leading virtual teams – by introducing them to “The 26.2 Lessons for Modern Leaders” (one for each mile of a full marathon).

Purple Grass™: Innovation, Creative Thinking & Problem Solving

The various filters through which we see the world can affect teamwork, communication, productivity, and motivation to name just a few, and these different filters are often the reason behind clashes in the workforce and an inability to look at situations and processes in a new light. This humorous, practical workshop will cover common sources of misunderstanding and a framework for putting everyone’s filters to work in a beneficial manner – no matter what color the grass may be.