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Issue #29 - Fantasy Football* = Best Business Model?

Fantasy football* is a game in which the participants serve as the general managers of virtual profes

Transforming Talent Insights

January 31 · Issue #29 · View online
Feeding the Passion for Transformation: Be it Talent, Culture, Work or HR

Fantasy football* is a game in which the participants serve as the general managers of virtual professional gridiron football teams. The competitors choose their team rosters by participating in a draft in which all players of a real football league are available. Points are based on the actual performances of the players in the real-world competition. (Wikipedia)
Ok, so what does fantasy football (EEOA for ROW: premier league) have to do with the new world of work, successful innovation and our role as people leaders?
Quite a lot actually. In the new world of work, the way we work and understand team is also changing.
The speed, rate of urgency and ability to create new “boxes” based on combining knowledge in unique and effective ways is the new competitive advantage. This means, in turn, that the who and what is considered to be a team is also changing.
Long gone are the days when team only meant the people who shared an office with you, had the same manager, and were part of the same functional department (and the team you were supposed to be most beholden to). There have been team organizational structures to secure/foster/force collaboration e.g. project management ca. 1915 when Henry Gantt created his (in)famous chart for cross-functional teaming, in the 70’s with partially autonomous work teams or Quality Circles (both preferred only for production, please) ca. 2001, Agile changed the face of software development and since crossed-over into organizational design…So what is the next iteration of teaming that changes up the game?
Cross-boundary teaming - people from different disciplines and schools of thought actively choosing to contribute their expertise in order to tackle challenging problems or innovate new solutions. In essence, Fantasy Football teams are called up to the field/pitch in the hope that the players will find that synergetic flow to win the game.
Cross-boundary teaming (aka extreme teaming) is the new game in town. Organizations, communities of practice - and individuals who are hungry for growth and learning - are asking, “who can I collaborate with that will bring a unique and different perspective to this question?” The unfamiliar is embraced, thought-paradigms are questioned and one’s expertise is being used in new ways. In a recent global study by Mercer, they state that distributed and flexible team is crucial in the Human Age of Growth. “It is critical for them (organizations) to establish an architecture that allows for seamless communication and builds trust, confidence, and camaraderie among widely dispersed team members.” As we look to how people leverage technology (including machine learning), add capabilities to tackle new situations, we are stepping up to the Innovation Bowl league to discover the real breakout players. 

When the whistle blows, will you step up to the pitch?
When the whistle blows, will you step up to the pitch?
All things Amy Edmondson - Teaming Coach at Large
Audacious Innovation: Coaching Leaders to Change the World with Professor Amy Edmondson
Amy Edmondson: How to turn a group of strangers into a team | TED Talk Subtitles and Transcript | TED
The Unique Challenges of Cross-Boundary Collaboration MIT Sloan Frieda Klotz
Starting Line-Up
Extreme Teams: Why Pixar, Netflix, AirBnB, and Other Cutting-Edge Companies Succeed Where Most Fail Robert Bruce Shaw
Creating Teams of the Future Randall Peterson London Business School
League Management
Business - Work Life - Adam Grant- EP.#5: How to Trust People You Don’t Like
Linda Hill: How to manage for collective creativity | TED Talk
A Large Scale Study on Global Talent | Mercer
Question: What do you look for when you draft your league?
The power of collaboration, thinking beyond boundaries and being empowered to do so is a particular passion of mine. It is something I was proud to facilitate in my former role as Talent Director be it from changing over the supply chain organization to helping create the biggest leap in employee engagement ever measured by a vendor. The power of co-creation is fuels innovation, a sense of contribution and ownership: if done on a good basis of trust, brave space and sense of accountability.
Along those lines, I am proud to announce that, I am teaming with Anne-Cècile Graber on a co-creation culture process guide for start-ups, established organizations, the people role (aka HR) and network communities of expertise (watch this space: expected launch 2019).
If this is a topic that you are jazzed about or if the topic of cross-boundary teaming is something that you would like to dive deeper into for your organization or team, please let me know. Would love to help support you!
So with that Allstars - get your game on and go play,
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Elizabeth Lembke, Transforming Talent Consulting: and