Kotter - NYU
Played by Jane
2. Organizing and staffing versus aligning people
Issue: At NYU, we merged three major IT groups, Academic Computing, Administrative Computing and Telecom, which had previously had separate leadership and had worked as separate silos.
[managerial response] We've created new departments, and reassigned staff to functional groups. Although there hasn't been a lot of moving around, the organization and staffing should be responsive and able to complete projects well, but we feel that hasn't happened as well as it could. And, a recent employee survey showed that the biggest staff complaint is lack of communication. How do we fix this?
[Kotter] What you need is to align the groups, to show that there are common goals for all three, and that there is a new vision for the future of the organization. To do this requires a great deal of communication, not just from the top down but between all the levels of the organization. Have you considered having meetings by topic, rather than within existing groups? In those meetings leaders can set the tone and share what their vision is for the group, without hitting people over the head. Alignment also leads to empowerment -- when people know what the organization is about, they feel like they can contribute as well.