One of the biggest reasons I’ve been a successful manager is because I have successfully marketed my team to the rest of the organization as a helpful team full of professionals who excel at what they do. As a manager, I take my responsibility of marketing my team VERY seriously, and do it every chance I get. If folks don’t know what your team does, you stand a chance of getting your staffing levels cut, of folks not respecting what your team does, or worst of all, of getting outsourced because folks think you offer a commodity service instead of an invaluable service.
One of the trends in the late 90s and early 00s was outsourced Help Desks. Now, many other jobs are getting outsourced because of cost conscious folks who only look at the hard costs of staffing instead of the total cost of service. Sure, anyone can answer the other end of the Help Desk phone, but if someone doesn’t know your business, will they make the best decisions for your organization about importance, priority, and impact to the business? I doubt it, but this article is not meant to bash outsourcing. Instead, it’s meant to empower YOU the manager with the tools you need to market your team, and move from helpLESS to helpFUL!
If you’re not physically close to your peers, then pick up the phone and call folks to ask them how your team is doing. I leave it very open ended. When I call branch managers, I ask if we (IT) can do anything to make their lives more productive, or to help them become more profitable. I do this instead of surveys because it’s less formal than a survey and gives me an opportunity to tune into the other manager’s moods, needs, and ways we can improve to provide them even better service in the future.
Now it’s your turn:
What are some better ways you market your team?
Do you have any stories to share about great marketing, or marketing gone wrong, of your team?