411 Locals, as an international company, would like to advise you, that a project usually requires commitment from employees or professionals from different functions or department that are already existing in the organization. Such a team is called cross-functional team.

This type of team can be in great help for any company and they are very useful when you need to fix an existing problem or to find a new solution. They are just assigned to a specific assignment. Just for example, a company might set up a cross-functional team from software specialist, hardware specialist, people from customer service department, procurement. All of them will be “loaned” full or part time from their existing team temporarily, till the job is done. After finishing the project the cross-functional team will be dismissed.

However, to finish the project on time and to reach all goals, the cross-functional team first have to be set up properly. 411 Locals would like to introduce 6 steps that might help any company to configure a cost-effective cross-functional team with great productivity

1. Clear objectives. You need to set a clear objective or objectives

Layout a clear objective or target. Make sure you clarify what kind of outcomes are expected from the team. Make sure those objective are purified, identify the resources that the team can rely on and create a team charter.

2. Determine the employee roles review them and select the virtuous team members.

After you already have the idea what is expected, you have to define the roles and then to attract the proper team members. First, you need to think about the technical competences and skills each different cross team member have to have. Consider that putting together people from different and eventually opposing departments might lead to communication issues between the members. To cope with that assign at least some people with great communication and decision-making skills.

3. Set a budget and resources

No matter the newly formed cross-functional team is from employees, it will need resources to function and to work on the task. For example, it could be free office space, access to a conference room. Furthermore, the cross-functional team might need new software and / or hardware to finish the task.

4. Initiate and Institute the ways of team functioning

Establish the way the newly developed cross function team will operate. 411 Locals practice advice you to start a project with clear and understandable rules. Before the real work is starting organize a meeting with the team and check for any questions and possible improvements. The main issues with any new team is that you cannot make upfront any precise presumptions how it will work together. However, you can ensure rules, communication channels, decision-making process, resources, time for feedback and training.

5. Appoint the right for the team leadership style

A manager can use in his daily routine one main leadership style. Within a cross-function teams, things are different.Usually, the members are equal so the Autocratic style might not me the proper choice. The Democratic style might lead to team spoiling and delay. For sure the balance between equals has to be kept, no matter that the team will quickly appoint a nonformal leader. Several group coaching sessions conducted in the beginning of the project might help the team to clarify the roles and appoint the most suitable nonformal leader

6. Communicate with the team

During the work process, conflicts between the different cross function team members will arise naturally. To reduce the negative effect or even to avoid it, you have to communicate regularly with the team. Showing a weekly interest on the progress and meeting with the team could be a good idea. Use simple words and a lot of visuals. 411 Locals practice shows that you just need to just make the thing smooth and easier for the team. Pay attention to the team members and listen what they have to say or state. It could take you some time but when created, a receptive atmosphere will boost the productivity of your cross-functional team.

Once you are ready with your team, you just will have wait about 1 - 2 weeks for the first results. The practice shows that this is a crucial period for the cross-functional team . The things might not start smooth between the team participants - do not forget they have different education, background, specialization. To glue them, use friendly jokes, avoid any kind of mumbling or blaming. Cross-functional teams are known also as a cross-department team. Regardless of the name and your internal company structure, those team could be a great asset for your company.

Author's Bio: 

Nikolay Peshev is working as an Online Reputation Manager for an Internet advertising agency 411 Locals, based in Las Vegas, NV. The company is an official Google partner and holds A+ rating from BBB.