Throughout the life of the Enterprise Product Leadership podcast, I’ve had critical conversations on many product leadership topics such as driving a data strategy with Bill Schmarzo, how to test business ideas with David Bland, how to drive innovation with Geoffrey Moore, and much more. All of these topics are very important for product leaders but there’s one key ingredient that’s missing: the human element of alignment and collaboration.
The role of a leader is to ensure everybody is aligned and can contribute to the vision of the product and the company. Without that alignment, there’s no technology, business model, or data strategy that matters.
That is why I’m so excited to be joined by Stefano Mastrogiacomo on the show today. Stefano is a management consultant, professor, and author. His book, High-Impact Tools for Teams: 5 Tools to Align Team Members, Build Trust, and Get Results Fast, is the missing manual to achieve and maintain alignment throughout the life of your product.
From a leadership perspective, this is probably one of the most important episodes I’ll ever publish. I hope you enjoy the conversation as much as I did!
Episode Details: How to Create Clarity and Alignment across your Organization with Stefano Mastrogiacomo:
“Alignment is not easy. It’s not an easy process. Especially when we have different backgrounds, different priorities, etc. So there has to be some initial starting point on which we all converge, regardless of where we come from.” — Stefano Mastrogiacomo
About Stefano Mastrogiacomo:
Stefano Mastrogiacomo a management consultant, professor, and author. He is passionate about human coordination and he is the designer of the Team Alignment Map, the Team Contract, the Fact Finder, and the other tools presented in this book. He has been leading digital projects and advising project teams in international organizations for more than 20 years while teaching and doing research at the Universities of Lausanne, Switzerland. His interdisciplinary work is anchored in project management, change management, psycholinguistics, evolutionary anthropology, and design thinking.
Topics We Discuss in this Episode:
Stefano Mastrogiacomo’s career background and journey
How and why Stefano originally discovered the importance of alignment
Why you need to focus on alignment and coordination in order to get anything done as a leader
The key message of Stefano’s book, High-Impact Tools for Teams: 5 Tools to Align Team Members, Build Trust, and Get Results Fast
The creative journey of writing his book
Why alignment is crucial to driving innovation
Key principles in coordination and alignment
How Stefano recommends approaching the task of alignment between multiple departments as a product leader
About the Team Alignment Tool how it helps structure an alignment conversation that creates mutual clarity
Why understanding the mission is the first step to achieving alignment (and how to effectively create a mission with clarity)
The human side of the innovation journey
The four key requirements for human coordination
What co-planning is and how it enables coordination in your organization
How to address resistance towards change
What you need to address to achieve alignment and coordination in order to have a successful innovation journey
Key components that make the execution journey more smooth
The challenges of coordination and how to address them
How to foster a more collaborative and communicative team
How to address common challenges around human coordination
The similarities and differences between achieving alignment in small vs. large organizations
Common challenges that leaders will face in implementing collaboration tools in their organizations (and how to overcome them)