A New Lens For Viewing Team Adaptation
Source: University of Michigan (Ross)
Companies have come to rely heavily on downsizing through layoffs, early retirement and buyouts as a quick and relatively easy way to trim costs. But such initiatives often fail to realize their intended benefits because of the way these work-force reductions impact teamwork in organizations. In a new study of team downsizing, the University of Michigan's D. Scott DeRue and colleagues argue that the approach used to implement reductions significantly influences how well teams adapt and affects their performance afterward. They suggest that managers can use two key levers - recomposition and structural alterations - to signal a need for behavioral change and adaptation in teams. When team functioning is sufficiently disrupted, the remaining members make the necessary behavioral changes that enable them to adapt and perform better after the downsizing.