Imagine that you are the head of research at a detergent company and are tasked with finding a formula that will remove the toughest red wine stain from clothing.how would you go about solving this challenge?
Chances are that you might you might give the problem statement to a select group of scintists in your organization and give them a budget and a time line to come up with a solution.In the digital age,however,problem solving is everyone’s job and the approach is to collaborate with anyone who has the answer,through a process called “TEAMING”.
Traditionally, corporate teams,sports team music bands,etc.,have all operated as a static collection of individuals inside stable boundaries. These individuals develop trust over time,collaborate well-designed tasks and understand each other’s role well. But today ,teams are becoming increasingly boundary-less and dyanamic. The new reality in the digital age is the businesses operate in an environment where the probelems are new,big,urgent or unprecedented. Unilever CEO paul polman says: the issues we face areso big and the targets are so challenging that we cannot do it alone so there is a certain humility and a recognition that we need to invte other people in.” this calls for people,from inside and out side the organization,to come together quickly without any formal supporting structures, coordinate across boundaries such as expertise, timezones and languages, ake dicisions and achieve results .
The extraordinary rescue of the 12 thai football players and their coaches who were trapped inside the thame luang cave for 17 days in June and july is a casein point. The rescue team had thai navy SEALs, Australian and British divers, and doctors from various countries. They teamed up on the fly,learned to collaborate seamlessly without any formal structures,found innovation solutions, and ultimately emerged victorious in their mission. Teaming can also happen internally in an organization. Publicis,the French multinational advertising an public relations company, recentaly unveiled marcel,an artificial tntelligence-driven platform that promises to bring all its 80,000 employees on a common platform to break all silos. On marcel,emloyees can did it take part in cilient projects,team up get work done and disband themselves. This enables the organization to tap into their wide network of talent that exist across boundaries and serve the unique of its customers in innovative ways. When A.G lafley first became theCEOof proctor & gamble in 2000,he quickly understood that the “DO IT YOURSELF”model of innovation had run its course.to turbocharge the innovation model. He renamed the R&Dfunction as connect and develop(C&D). the idea was to connect with any one outside the organization who had answers to the tough problems that the company was trying to solve. Toay the company leverges 7,500of its internal researchers and 1.5 million people outside to create innovative products. Thus,leaders must enable their teams to focus on openness,sharing and collaborating beyond boundaries.