Archive for the 'business spin' Category

When in Trouble There’s Nothing Like a Team

Wednesday, September 29th, 2004

Clintonista Spindoc James Carville says Senator Kerry is going to be OK: He now has a team “of really good people” working on his campaign and prepping him for presidential debates.

“Team,” of course, is corporatespeak for everything will be okey dokey from now on because we have turned over the problem (disaster, opportunity, no-win challenge) to a gaggle of diverse minds who then practice group think. “Team” became popular spin after “task force” caused too many subversive smiles.

In a timely article, Jared Sandberg reports in the Wall Street Journal Online on the value of teams (“Some Ideas Are So Bad That Only Team Efforts Can Account for Them”). He tells the hortatory story of the Air Force “process improvement team” (PTT) that spent a month devising a better way to handle incoming mail. When the PTT finished its work, one of the Air Force’s largest bases had increased from eight to 19 the steps needed to deliver a letter to its proper recipient after it arrived on the base.

Obviously, appointing a PTT is superior to a simple team.