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Helping team members navigate a restructuring

I recently worked with a team that went through a restructuring of one of their departments. Two teams that had been separate entities were now combined as part of the same team. That meant they needed to consolidate their processes, team meetings, and get comfortable working with new managers. I'd love to hear advice on things that companies can do to help improve the employee experience during a restructuring.

Comments

  • edited May 2019

    Restructuring is never comfortable. It creates uncertainty for everyone involved. In addition, you're now mixing personalities and team cultures. I've experienced it first hand and work closely with a client that went through an entire company reorg. In the very beginning, it will be so important to set the stage for open and candid feedback. Give the employees opportunities to raise their concerns during 1:1's and team meetings. Organizing an event early after the restructure can accelerate collaboration and communication among the group. For example, I recently participated in a team bike building event. The bikes were donated to a local youth organization for kids that do not have the means. The event had purpose and was a ton of fun. it helped foster communication and collaboration with new members of the team and provided perspective that there are bigger issues in the world.

  • I recently discussed this with a former client of mine who's bank went through SIX re-orgs.. He learned a lot from the first few and got to practice in the last few. A few of his top pieces of advice:

    1. Be as transparent as possible about what is coming... people want to know what they're getting into and a lot of grief can be saved by providing clarity on the changes ahead.
    2. Connect a few of your most talented and enthusiastic people "across the aisle" right away and work with them to disseminate information and keep a finger on the pulse of their teams.
    3. Set your managers up for success by sharing as much information as possible about new direct reports and get them connected QUICKLY! The more "people data" they can get their hands on, the faster the teams begin "rowing in the same direction"

    These may seem obvious, but in the scramble of a business re-org, it's easy to lose track of the human side of business restructuring!

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