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In baseball, every team player has a specialty by position in the field. First base, pitcher, short stop, etc.; each one has mastered a role and its related skillset to help their team win. Sometimes, there is a player who can successfully play multiple positions and can fill in gaps when necessary. While we’re talking sports, the same can be applied to the IT world.
When building your IT “Dream Team,” who wouldn’t want a team of specialists, all masters in a specific area from unified communications to wireless presentation. However, our resource availability may dictate whom we can bring on board. Your team may be a team of 1 or 100. Having a team of generalists versus core specialists may prove to be better depending on your business needs.
How can you ensure you have the right balance of skillsets to serve your colleagues while maintaining a secure work environment? Having “jacks of all trades” can be great, but there’s always the ending to that saying…”master of none.” On the other hand, having just a team of specialists can be an obstacle. For example, if your security specialist is unavailable, a project or call for support could be delayed.
Whether you’re building your IT team from scratch or reorganizing the structure, what are some things you can do as an IT leader?

  • Create Your Ideal Team. You have a vision on how you see your IT team structured and working in your organization. Put that vision to paper (or whiteboard) with roles and responsibilities mapped. It’s the framework for how you want your team to operate. This is where you can start to work towards filling gaps, assigning roles, seeking new talent, etc.
  • Manage Your Resources. Now it’s time to be realistic. As leaders, we have to understand that our dream may not come to fruition right now. It becomes a matter of what resources we have available to us: time, people and budget.
  • Time: Where are you on your IT roadmap? The projects that have concrete deadlines may require you to shift your team’s responsibilities. You may need to have more specialists on certain projects with generalists covering other team responsibilities
  • People: The number of employees you have now may increase or decrease depending on business needs and budgets. A small team may require more generalists than specialists to support the organization. Outsourcing your IT may be an option to keep specialists in-house or vice versa
  • Budget: Your working budget may include what you can afford to spend on projects, technology and people. The amount of money available to support your vision is critical. If the funds are available, then you will need to find ways to scale
  • Look at IT & Business Trends. New technology for your business may require a specialist versus a generalist to develop and implement. Examine whom your peers are hiring. Industry publications can give you some insights on how teams are structured to meet the changes in business styles and communication.
  • Promote Professional Development. New technology is also an opportunity for learning. Your generalists can become specialists with your support. You can grow your team from within the organization. Connect with your employees to ee how they want to grow with you. If resources allow, you can guide them on a learning track that can benefit you both 
  • Be Aligned. Your organization’s goals and objectives will give you direction on how your IT team will function. Hiring the right people is a part of that. Will your current team meet the challenges ahead? Do you need to bring on or develop specialties? Discuss with other leaders in your organization on how they see IT working for them. That way, you and your team can work with together towards the same goals

We want to be the champions of technology at work. IT generalists can cover the gamut of new technology, maintenance and support calls. IT specialists can set our organization apart with the tools to differentiate our business world. Nevertheless, having the right people has to fit in with our current structure, resources and goals.

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Enterprise software is usually created for a big company with several different employees. Some might be able to operate it without any issues, others might struggle. Unfortunately, a big user pool also leads to a large number of complaints and disgruntled users. These complaints are inevitably directed towards the technical support department that has to deal with the issue.
Unfortunately, it’s never easy dealing with angry enterprise users. Sometimes, there’s simply no way to placate them. So how do you handle an angry client who simply refuses to be satisfied with your answers? Here are a few points.
Let them Speak
In most cases, such people only want to vent their anger and frustration. It’s best to just let them. Whether you’re directly responsible for their problem or not, you’re the face of the company to them. Until their anger has passed, they’re going to hate you and everything associated with you. One of the best ways to deal with the problem is to just be quiet and listen.
This can sometimes be very difficult, especially if you’re not at fault and there’s nothing wrong with the product. Trying to point out that it was their mistake in the first place won’t help. In fact, that might only compound the issue. Understandably, it takes a lot of patience and fortitude to bear someone’s anger without retaliating, but that’s your only recourse if you want to retain the user.
Don’t get Offended
One of the worst things you can do when an enterprise user is angry is to take the issue personally. While they might be angry and venting their anger on you, taking it personally will only hamper your ability to look at the situation objectively. When you face a disgruntled user, objectivity is a must. The user is taking the situation personally enough for both of you.
Instead, try to mitigate the anger by using statements that cushion the user. For example, if the user has found a technical glitch in the software that delayed their work and led to loss, they’re rightfully angry. Simply state, “I’m sorry you had to face so much trouble, we’re looking into it…
This shows the user that you’re being accountable. Of course, these statements would seem hollow if you don’t follow up and actually do something about it. To maintain a positive relationship with the user, make sure that you address the problem immediately.
Ask Questions
While it’s necessary to listen when the client is at the peak of his anger, you need to start figuring out the problem as soon as possible. Ask him valid questions and engage him in a conversation. Eventually, he’ll start to calm down. One of the best ways to deal with angry people is to engage them in a rational conversation where they need to think and focus.
Bring the conversation down to level ground and try to figure out what the problem is. The closer you are to the root of the issue, the calmer the user will be. This way, you can turn the conversation towards a more pleasant end. Turning an angry tirade towards a reasonable conversation can create a positive relationship between your firm and the user.
Give a Solid Time Frame
It’s best to give the users a solid time-frame. Vague open-ended timelines like “as soon as possible” will only irritate the user. Instead, give them a date and time and if the situation isn’t handled by then, call and explain about your progress.
This again showcases accountability and will go a long way to build a good relationship with the customer. By keeping these things in mind, you can deal with different users to the best of your ability.

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According to the Global Policy Forum, as of 2014, there are over 40,000 multinational corporations working through 250,000 affiliated firms. That’s a lot of data being shared across borders. That’s also a lot of IT employees working to keep information flowing and secured.
Do you work for a multinational company? If so, then you know that IT plays a critical role in connecting everyone. Your infrastructure has to support multiple offices, devices, and tools, whether your IT is on-site or in a central location.
How does one determine how the IT department will be structured? The size of your global company and its offices can help you make the right call in designing your IT organizational structure. Let’s explore the benefits of managing IT locally or at your corporate headquarters.
Managing IT Locally:

  • Team on-site to address to critical/high priority issues
  • Help desk support more readily accessible
  • Hardware installations/integration may be performed more timely
  • Hands-on training of technology
  • Localized projects and tasks can be handled and managed
  • Communication and language barriers may be limited 


  • Global deployment has to be time to reduce disruption
  • Limited resources, if outside of corporate office

Managing IT Centrally:

  • Global support can be provided to address common/shared issues
  • Global resolution of critical/high priority issues and updates
  • Limited travel required
  • Can monitor activities from one location
  • 24/7 support, if resources permit


  • If 24/7 support is not provided, time zones and locations can become barriers
  • Cannot be on-site to support local projects and hardware installations
  • Communication and language barriers may be significant and could hiring multilingual employees
  • Limited resources, if centralized team structure is not balanced

What will work for you?
Your company’s goals and strategies can help you determine how to design the ideal IT team across its many locations. What will work for one business may not work for another. Look at how your company is organized and what business needs are being served in each location. This could indicate how you and your employees can provide the best level of support possible.
A local structure may work if your overseas operations are significant and require full-team support. By having local employees, the IT infrastructure in a specific location can ensure matters are handled efficiently. By having centralized employees, global matters can be addressed singularly, rather than by office.
As business and technology become more global, companies will need to find ways to manage work activities, data exchange and security. In addition, companies are hiring more remote employees, the location of IT will only matter based on reporting structure.
At some point, will IT become more centralized? Possibly. In the meantime, IT needs to be structured around employees and partners where they are and how they work for you.

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Collaboration tools have made working in teams easier and more effective than ever. However, finding the right members to create your own IT “dream team” is one obstacle all organizations must overcome. In the tech sector, it can be even more difficult. Several studies report that there is a shortage of skilled workers in IT. Secondly, even with highly talented members, a team can fail when not assembled strategically. Below are some essential tips for assembling your IT dream team.
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Recruit by talent and culture

Building a dream team is similar to building a dream house. If you don’t have all the right materials, then it is most likely not going to turn out the way you want. Configuring a strong group dynamic is essential to making it work. The key to attracting talent is discovering what motivates the types of people you want, but also, whether or not those individuals will thrive in your company culture. For instance, many organizations have looked towards building a fun company culture in order to attract fresh talent.
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Know your players

The most successful groups consist of members that complement each other’s skills and working style. How can organizations find out individual’s skills and working style? One way is simply from observation and previous work experience. But, there are other ways to learn more about your employees. Some companies ask job candidates or new employees to take a behavior and skills assessment at the start of a business relationship.
For more seasoned workers, organizations can track individual performance. Instead of conducting the outdated, once-a-year performance review, leaders meet with employees for feedback sessions four or more times a year. During these, they can learn more about individual motivations, gauge experience levels, and identify strengths and areas of improvement. The more that an organization knows about how its employees work, the better. This insight will be key in forming groups whose members have skills and attitudes that complement each other.

Define goals and roles

For any project or business, a clear, well-defined goal should be established at the start. It can be easy to fall into the day-to-day execution frame of mind, which can give way to micro-management. Reminding teams of the “big picture” helps prevent them from getting off track or missing deadlines.
Furthermore, defining roles can be essential to teamwork. When each individual understands his or her purpose–and how it fits into the bigger picture–they are more likely to achieve goals. Establishing roles is another way to assure that the workload is evenly distributed and that each member contributes. For instance, leaders are crucial for setting the example and uniting the rest of the team.

Use data to improve

There are dozens of factors that can affect whether or not a company or a project is a success. However, when businesses track the progress of a goal from idea to execution, they can make adjustments in real-time. At the end of a project, reflect on group performance data, use wireless presentation software to visualize the top takeaways, and improve future teamwork.
Building an IT dream team that continuously tackles projects and champions their industry space won’t happen overnight. However, organizations that devote the time and resources into strategically recruiting and fostering productive team dynamics will rise above their competition.