The biggest challenge I’ve had with building alignment as a team leader was the “silo megaphone effect”. In the past, I’ve attended a number of surreal stakeholder meetings attended by:
- head of product
- head of delivery
- a technical person
- a head of QA
- or possibly other managers.
Each participant makes statements that–on their own–made absolute sense. For example, the QA person argued for keeping a certain standard in terms of quality. The delivery person wanted to bring in the date as much as possible. The product person wanted to throw in as much scope as possible to make it easier to sell the product. I understood what they were saying. I could fully understand why they were saying what they were. They genuinely believed they were arguing for the overall benefit of the company, as a whole.
Nevertheless, if you juxtaposed what one manager was saying against the other, it was less than clear what the overall priority was. And this is exactly what I call the silo megaphone effect.