I recently read a theory about teams in the workplace from a variety of sources including General Stanley McChrystal’s book, “Team of Teams,” which entails a process of employing many small specialized teams to tackle large complicated issues. Hiring teams of individuals in unison to accomplish a goal is not new to many businesses. When college football teams change head coaches, for example, an entire staff of ancillary/associate coaches may accompany the new coach. Thus, a new team is hired.
In other cases, a team of individuals is assembled one at a time. For example, I have a friend in the advertising business who has worked as part of a team which was assembled over the years and hired by different agencies to provide writing and graphic design services. The individuals that make up this advertising team were hired one at a time as the agency grew. In music, there are many famous teams of song writers. In the corporate world, companies purchase other businesses and acquire teams to add a service or function they do not currently possess or offer. Think of Google’s acquisition of Android, Nest, Waze, and YouTube
Hiring teams can also occur via outsourcing. Or as I prefer to call it, by securing a “team partner.” Groups seek out organizations to partner with that specialize in ready-built teams in their respective industry, rather than build a team from scratch.
Outsourcing has at times received a negative reputation. Many business leaders question outsourcing anything. However, health care is morphing and changing daily. If a leader does not take the time to assess opportunities or approaches outside their organization’s usual way of thinking, maintaining the status quo could become detrimental and costly. It is perfectly normal, and oftentimes most beneficial, to ask for help in finding and hiring teams from an industry expert.
Why should an ASC consider hiring a team partner?
- Locate and tap into existing expertise. Hiring an industry team partner allows an ASC to quickly access qualified candidates with a history of success. While past success is not a sure sign of future success, it is a much better indicator than no past experience or a history of no success. While there are no guarantees a new internal team will succeed, the proven track record of a team partner is generally worth the price – both in dollars and time.
- Time is of the essence. You will rarely hear an organization say, “There are no time constraints to launch this project or fix this issue.” While building expertise from within, or tapping into internal resources may seem safe, it typically isn’t expeditious in our fast-paced health care environment. Learning takes time. Becoming an expert takes even more time. Often, learning on the job is not a luxury we possess. A team partner allows for immediate impact.
- No team bonding needed. High performing teams have a proven track record of working extremely well together. New teams, on the other hand, need time to create chemistry and build trust. Selecting experienced individuals with the proper skill-set and culture, then creating a team to elicit results and meet expectations is time consuming. Consider hiring an ASC team partner to access established teams. Bringing on an established team provides more timely dividends.
- Internal change is difficult. If change was easy, there would not be a multi-billion dollar industry built around helping individuals or organizations with their change management efforts. Many organizations will hire a single individual or even multiple individuals to create a new service offering. Within a few months or a year, those individuals may begin to think and act like everyone else leaving their original goals unaccomplished. Team partnering allows an organization to tap into an alternative corporate culture to advance a new initiative or gain buy-in to a critical mindset change.
- Acquire the crossover effect. Organizations experience a period of plasticity in their identity when there is a large influx of new employees. This period of change is known as the crossover effect. The crossover effect can be viewed as positive disruption. The spread of new ideas and new ways of working bring new life to the host organization. Often a newly hired team can affect other, more established teams within the organization via positive disruption.
Business owners and leaders are all striving for gains and improvement in the performance of their people and organizations. In many cases, changing our perceptions, practices, and personnel will be required to achieve those gains. Thoughtfully consider if hiring team partners might help your ASC acquire the individuals needed to facilitate some of those changes in the most expeditious, beneficial manner possible.
Robert Carrera, President/CEO