Scaling teams: The Shop Window

For more on scaling teams see here.

When setting up and scaling analytics teams I have viewed teams I’ve led as in-house consultancy functions. Some of the work might look more like operational support tickets, but presenting as a value-adding function rather than a ‘fixing issues’ function is better for growth. This is because there are many ways a consultancy can broaden what it does to create value in different ways. There is only ever so much technical fixing work to be done. Being a value-adding function, or even just aspiring in that direction sets the intention to want to work proactively to make the organisation better – to come up with ideas, to test new things, to always be tackling new problems and opportunities. When you think of yourself as a service provision team it is easy to get stuck in reactive work.

And you may need to fake it till you make it! I’ve been in teams doing largely reactive work but with a strong desire to work more proactively and do more impactful, interesting and self-directed work. The way to do it is to talk about yourself as that team you want to be!

Make sure you have a presence on whatever your internal communications set up is. External website, Intranet, Slack, Google, Teams; whatever it is, have a presence wherever other teams, functions and departments are visible.

Who are you? Not just the team, but the people in the team with names and faces and personalities.

Talk about the vision and purpose of your team. How does what your team provides fit in with the bigger picture strategy, purpose and values of your department, and of the organisation? Stating this shows how relevant you are.

Talk about what you do and perhaps even be clear about what you don’t do. If people are better off talking to you about one thing and another team about another thing, sometimes making that clear provides a useful service to someone trying to find the right person.

Show examples of what you have done for other teams. What pains did you solve for people? What impact did that have? Celebrate your successes with pride.

How can people get what you provide? Link to any direct access services like dashboards. Be clear how to get in touch with the team.

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