3 min read ⌚
New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World
If you want to survive in today’s complex environment, your company has to become a “Team of Teams”.
About General Stanley McChrystal, Tantum Collins, David Silverman and Chris Fussell
General Stanley McChrystal is a retired four-star general, that served in the US Army for 34 years.
Tantum Collins studies international relations at Cambridge University.
“Team of Teams Summary”
No one of us knows what will happen tomorrow.
A risk is a companion of every business venture.
So, how do you cope with situations where nothing is certain? How do you make sure that you will be able to handle stressful, unexpected situations?
The first step toward becoming agile and able to change as situations change is knowing that you have the right teams in place.
You need to create an organisation that functions as a team of teams.
This will enable you to be flexible and cope with changes and to achieve success.
Today’s notion of success is usually mixed up with efficiency.
Everyone seems to be obsessed with efficiency: people, organisations, societies.
It seems that achieving the best results with the lest possible effort is the ultimate goal everyone sets for themselves.
However, efficiency is not a synonym for success.
The world we live in is always changing, especially since information technology have been introduced.
What advancements in information technology did was make the world a rapidly changing, interdependent place, in which a number of factors clash and produce unpredictable results.
Today, companies face various threats that literally come from nowhere.
In the traditional business context, people were thought to protect themselves from issues by preparing for every possible scenario.
However, in the contemporary context, preparing for your setbacks is virtually impossible, because of the already mentioned unpredictability of your threats.
So, how can you fight something without knowing what you will possibly be struggling with?
The answer lies in becoming more flexible and adaptable.
You need to be able to respond to threats immediately, without much previous preparation.
And to do that, you need well functioning teams.
Teams consist of different people with different knowledge and skills, which ensure that if a company is a team of teams, it can adapt to different types of threats and face various challenges.
Key Lessons from “Team of Teams”
1. Grasp the Unpredictability of Modern Times
2. How Teams Function
3. A Team of Teams
Grasp the Unpredictability of Modern Times
Stop trying to come up with all the possible scenarios that can happen, since today’s world is highly unpredictable.
To make sense of this complexity, you need to rely on the teamwork of your employees, who need to work together toward achieving a single vision.
How Teams Function
Teams are different from command structures since they share a common purpose, and trust each other to do a set of actions that enable them to achieve their goals.
They have a shared understanding of the desirable outcomes, as well as the steps that each member needs to make to achieve that outcome. As a result, teams can respond rapidly in critical situations.
A Team of Teams
A company has to become a team of teams.
What this means is that an organisation needs to create multiple teams that communicate with each other, to be effective.
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