An international humanitarian organisation involved in post Tsunami rehabilitation was running numerous multi cultural teams in a variety of functions; health, water sanitation, reconstruction, organisational development. Communications…
Teams were composed of local staff and international staff and worked closely with o number of other agency and commercial partners and stakeholders.


Many team leaders had little if any formal training in managing a team, teams had no formal training in how to work effectively in teams. Work standards differed among different team members and there were issues with cross functional collaboration.


Improve and standardize team performance and management. Enhance cross team collaboration through improving the quality of meeting management and the Facilitation of multi stakeholder decision making.


PLB Consulting Ltd worked with the Operations manager and head of HR to design a series of workshops to address the key needs. The workshops were delivered over several weeks to more than 60 staff involved in the rehabilitation teams. All team leaders first took part in a two day leadership workshop and within the following two weeks attended a second workshop with their own teams. Teams were trained together to improve general interpersonal relations and encourage cross team collaboration. The suite of workshops included

  1. Leading High Performing Teams; The Team Management System approach was used to help managers identify their leadership and communication styles.
  2. Working In High Performance Teams. The TMS Profiles were used to help team members to better understand their team role and contribution to the team. Teams agreed ‘Team Charters’ and care non negotiable behaviours that would guide future collaboration.
  3. Facilitating Group Decision Making: Selected individuals were then trained in both facilitation skills and in managing meetings to further embed the collaborative approaches introduced in the other workshops. Diversity and crass cultural issues were dealt with as pragmatic questions in all of the workshops.


Team managers had a better understanding of their roles and responsibilities; they learned new skills to enable them to align individual team objectives with broader programme goals. Staff better understood their roles in the teams and the TMS profile provided illumination on personal work-style differences and gave people strategies of handling many of these. Behaviour that was creating dysfunction in teams was discussed in an open and transparent manner and allowed festering misunderstandings to be addressed. Spin off benefits were the open discussions and exploration of cross cultural issues, Managers report greater confidence in dealing with team and individual performance issues.