Teamwork plays a vital role in the success of any organization. Specifically, being able to work as a team contributes to the success of Lean Six Sigma projects and continuous improvement efforts. Team performance is about reaching the potential of each individual as well as the team as a whole.
Keys to Operating a Successful Lean Six Sigma Project Team
When creating the team for your next project, it is important to provide the team as much clarity as possible about both the project they will be working on and the roles that everyone on the team will be playing. This is especially important in today’s environment where many project teams are operating virtually.
Things to Consider When Defining the Project
The project charter is a great tool for introducing the project to the team. Work with them to clarify any uncertainties about the project and make updates to the charter as needed. Be sure to review the goals and objectives as a team and apply the SMART criteria – making them Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timebound so that everyone knows the target and how you will measure the success of the project.
Things to Consider When Defining the Team
Team members work more effectively when they know what is expected of them and they understand the strengths of their fellow team members. Once this is established, the team can avoid the “too many chiefs” syndrome and institute a culture of accountability.
Roles and responsibilities should be well-defined and shared with the entire team so that everyone knows who does what. In addition to defining the roles and responsibilities with your team members, it is helpful to establish ground rules about how the team will function:
- Agree on how to work together and make decisions
- Agree to leverage the team’s differences and interpersonal styles
- Agree that communication will be clear and honest among the team
- Commit to a conflict resolution process
Defining Your Team’s Profile
Many factors influence team dynamics, such as the skill sets, personalities and the behaviors of team members. It is beneficial to assess challenges, strengths, and opportunities for improvement among the members as well as the team as a whole. The ultimate goal of team building is to enable the members to utilize their different cognitive and behavioral tendencies and strengths.
There are several things to consider when developing your team’s profile:
- How individuals translate information
- How individuals accomplish key tasks
- How individuals interact with others
- How individuals influence others
- How individuals react to change
Eight Common Individual Behaviors to Consider When Assessing Your Team:
This work in assessing the members may feel like an extra step in the team building process, but in actuality, it is a critical part of establishing a solid foundation for your project. It can help the team to avoid overlaps and gaps, resulting in unintentional work duplication or catchup efforts, which in turn can cause decreased moral and increased conflict amongst the team. Acuity Institute is happy to provide you with a template for creating a profile for your Lean Six Sigma project team.
Download your template today to see how this process can help your business meet your goals. If you have any questions about the template, the team building process or Lean Six Sigma training, please contact us to set up a call.