Mosaic Team, Part 4: “So Who’s on First?”

“ ‘Who’s’ on first, ‘What’s’ on second, ‘I Don’t Know’ is on third. ” – Bud Abbott

One of the funniest baseball comedy skits in modern history was first performed by Bud Abbott and Lou Costello on “The Kate Smith Hour” live radio show in February of 1938.  Since then, it has become legendary, repeated dozens of times by them (and others).  The skit was based on the lineup of the mythical “St. Louis Wolves.”

For baseball teams then and now, the lineup is a critical component of the game.

If the coach puts the right people on the field in the right positions at the start of the game, the chances of victory have traditionally been higher. "Who's On First?" - A Mosaic Team is a carefully assembled group of individuals tasked with solving complex problems. Getting the "team lineup" correct is vital.

For the “Mosaic Team” (MT), making the best possible lineup is more important than ever.  The MT must be a carefully assembled group of individuals tasked with solving complex problems in record time.  And rather than all being on the same baseball field, the MT may be scattered all over the world.

Regardless of their physical location, each team member must know their specific responsibilities and be held accountable.  As I mentioned in earlier blogs, the team charter and covenant describe these commitments.

Additionally, there must be a high level of discipline in how the MT operates.  Meeting agendas should be published and followed purposefully.  When timelines are set, it is ensured they are met.

How do you build Mosaic Teams?  By carefully assigning members and choosing the leaders.  Senior leaders must assume responsibility for the team lineups.  The more careful the selection process is, the higher the probability of successful performance.

I also like the idea of asking your top performers and high potentials for their preferences.  What MT would they like to be on?  Why?  If feasible, I’d discourage being on 2 or 3 teams.  Multiple responsibilities can sometimes dilute the level of effort, and everyone suffers as a result.

So, make team selection a priority.  Give each MT a clear mandate and measurable expectations.  Team leaders should be recognized and rewarded for success.  If you make it a big deal, your workforce will want to participate.  They’ll want to be in the lineup, take the field, compete — and win.  The Mosaic Team is the relevant framework for profitability and a healthy culture.

Now you’ll know “Who’s on First?”

Enjoy the journey!

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