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"Conducted India's Largest Team Building event with 750 participants for KPMG!"

All growth emerges from change. As technology progresses in quantum leaps, change is accelerating. Giant companies are waking up to start-ups which threaten their market dominance overnight, just by innovating and reaching out to the market place with great speed. It is no longer the big beating the small, but it is the fast beating the slow. Organisations are today scouting the globe to identify talented individuals and putting them together in a team to fuel innovation and growth. Promising small companies are valued at astronomical sums to be acquired and integrated into the bigger company. While in the last decade, organisations focussed on recruiting and retaining the best talent, the coming decade is going to see companies struggling to make these talented individuals work together as a great team. These trends are throwing up exciting possibilities, as well as challenges for the future teams. We need to anticipate and prepare for these changes, to be able to leverage on them and ensure they work for us, and not against us. So what are the challenges to prepare for? One of the biggest issues organisations are going to face is diversity. As companies spread and globalise, their workforce is also getting internationalised. Infact, even in a country like India, where we are used to exporting talent, leading multi-nationals are internationalising the teams by bringing in expatriates from their different global offices to work here together. Diversity is also not only cultural, but also functional. For instance, research teams in some organisations are from mixed professions and varied disciplines. This diversity, brings with it creativity and energy, but if not handled well, can also lead to chaos and conflict. Thus, the leaders of tomorrow will need to demonstrate emotional and cultural sensitivity to lead people from different cultural mindsets, and integrate them into working harmoniously together towards a common goal. Teams will have to rise above the superficial cultural differences and bond through common universal human values like trust, passion and respect. Another interesting issue organisations will need to deal with is autonomy and control. As teams are geographically dispersed, and given more autonomy to move fast to respond to changes in market dynamics, the senior management will also feel the need for greater control to prevent misuse of the autonomy and powers that are delegated. Just as fantastic teams can boost the bottom line of their company by being creative in the marketplace, rogue teams are equally capable of tarnishing a company’s image and create for it huge financial liabilities. Members in a team, are the same people who are consumers in the market place. If we look around today, the most successful products and services are those which create an emotional connect with its audience and satisfy the social needs of individuals. Similarly, the most effective teams in the future will be those which are well bonded with each other, and find their social needs met through the team members to a great extent. Organisations will have to create interventions which encourage employees to express their emotions and connect with each other. Leaders will need to possess a high EQ to hold the trust of the team and facilitate it in resolving conflicts and creating genuine norms. Such teams will be able to synergise its resources and function as one unit with a pooling together of its energies. It is said that the more things change, the more they remain the same. As we move towards a global marketplace, and deal with diversity and uncertainty, organisations will have to go back to common human values to integrate people with different upbringings and mindsets. Such a move cannot happen overnight, but will have to be executed through a series of interventions and cultural changes. It is time to sharpen the axe…

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