Why We Work in Elite Teams

You may have heard about San-iT’s Elite Teams model. It has transformed the way we work, enabling our staff to offer better customer service and learn new skills without barriers.

But how do Elite Teams differ from the traditional Managed Service Provider (MSP) model? And why is it so effective at boosting performance?

Learn the answers to these questions as we explore the key benefits of an Elite Team structure.

What is an Elite Team structure?

Elite Team was developed by Martin Murphy and is detailed in his book, “From Mercenaries to Missionaries”.

Martin is a former Special Forces soldier, international adviser and coach to leaders and high-performance teams. He uses his unique experiences to help growing businesses expand sustainably.

His elite team concept is designed for high growth businesses that want to maximise the output of their people in a way that benefits everyone.

It works like this: each team has around six people and is entirely self-managed. Only one person in the team is responsible for communicating with a member of the supporting team or director, although it’s not a rigid structure as whoever leads the team on a particular day depends on the context and is decided by the team.

If you have six elite teams, this means that thirty-six people can be supported by one person “because autonomous teams can manage themselves,” explains Martin.

How does this differ from an MSP model?

A lot of IT support businesses operate on an MSP model, where they remotely manage a client’s IT infrastructure on a proactive basis. We still do this on an Elite Teams model.  The difference lies in how we communicate and work together.

Traditionally, when an MSP grows it’s team, the lines of communication increase substantially. Inter-team collaboration becomes more difficult, resulting in performance issues. Martin explains this further:

High-quality communication suffers when there are too many people on a team. That’s when hierarchies are formed, leading to consolidated organisations where everybody is widgetised and accountable for something, but nobody feels responsible for the success of the whole organisation.”

The other pitfall of large, hierarchical teams is the bystander effect. This occurs when people in a large group assume others will take responsibility for tasks nobody is specifically accountable for.

As you can imagine, poor communication and a lack of accountability means employees aren’t working as effectively as they should. Collaborating on projects becomes difficult as does providing customers with quality support. Elite Teams effectively solves these issues.

What Elite Teams does for our people

If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.”

– Henry Ford

E-teams break down hierarchical communication barriers, allowing for multi-generational peer-to-peer learning and the cross-fertilisation of ideas at all levels.

Our employees can get involved in projects that they haven’t worked on before. As our 1st/2nd Line Support Engineer, Mat K-M explains: “If you overhear one team talking about a project you’ve never tackled before, you can join in on the discussion and learn new skills.”

They can also easily gain exposure to new technologies. Both perks ensure our employees can:

  • Expand their skills and knowledge
  • Embrace new ways of thinking
  • Feel more engaged and fulfilled
  • Advance in their careers
  • Have a bigger impact on clients and the business

E-teams also ignite a stronger community with an emphasis on employee wellbeing. Being intra-dependent, team members can rely on each other for emotional support, coaching and feedback. “We have this really supportive environment where everyone is looking out for each other,” says Mat.

What Elite Teams does for our clients

Since collaboration is easier within e-teams, our clients benefit from streamlined and rapid communication.

Everybody within the team is always on the same page. So, if a client calls for support, they can speak with any member and get the right answers without being passed from pillar to post.

Our clients also gain better results from projects. Martin highlights why:

As e-team members are engaged, possess clarity of direction and have autonomy to solve challenges quickly, the results that follow tend to be exponential as opposed to linear.”

Plus, since our staff have access to immediate feedback from all levels, they are continuously learning and improving. As our apprentice, Terry Smith, puts it: “I love coming to work because it allows me to challenge myself and learn new things in the ever-evolving world of IT.”

This naturally results in teams that are driven by excellence, who strive to be better every day. Therefore, our clients always get the best possible service.

Moreover, e-teams encourage our staff to be more innovative and creative. This is essential for progression – it helps us develop better solutions to new problems.

Google advocates this tactic and encourages their staff to spend some of their work time on creative projects. “Many of our significant advances have happened in this manner,”

Embracing the power of technology to make the world a better place!

It has always been our focus: to ensure our people and our clients can improve their lives because of San-iT.

Elite Teams makes this achievable. Our employees have the freedom and motivation to consistently deliver their best work. This makes our client’s lives significantly better when it comes to IT – they gain a faster, supportive and more reliable service that puts them ahead of the game.

What do you think of Elite Teams? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Share them on Twitter.