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I'm working as a part of a team, however my actual work is related to tasks focusing around 3 or more separate teams, such as a solution architect in an IT environment.

Since there is a lot of work to be done and just one me, I was thinking of a reasonable way of asking my manager for permission to build a team. The idea is that I would have someone to help me with the day to day tasks. Ideally, I would prefer to build up internally (3 people for now) and perhaps using people on share time basis i.e. I get people from other teams for 50% of their work time.

The aim here is not for monetary gratification (although it's always nice ;) ) but for pushing the project further and getting some skill as a team leader.

How would I start the conversation about it and who should I engage? (direct manager or the person above him ).

I would like the message to be clear that I would oversee the team i.e. maybe not from the hire/fire perspective but who do I choose and how do I manage the efforts of the team.

  • What functions will these people be performing? It sounds from your question that you want people to help you with your job. Is this a project you want to manage, or is it just day-to-day tasks? – Snow May 31 '18 at 9:07
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    I´d like to caution you against the 50% idea. This never works well. See Human Task Switches – Daniel May 31 '18 at 9:24
  • It's a little bit of both I would need to train people( the keen one), then they could handle some of the easy/intemediate tasks. I want to focus on the more difficult tasks. There is no realy day to day tasks as in tickets or something, it's more of small to big tasks creating the big picture project. – MMT May 31 '18 at 9:26
  • Don't skip your manager in the discussions. – Mister Positive May 31 '18 at 12:34
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Essentially your first step has to be putting together a business case for why the team is needed and how the benefits having such a team would bring outweigh the costs to the business in doing so.

Some useful questions to ask yourself when doing this:

  • Are deadlines being missed or additional work being turned down because of lack of capacity in my function?

  • If you were to use part of other people's work time for this how would their existing workload be handled?

  • Is there any requirement for training the new team members? If so is this external training or could it be provided in house and what would be the costs (direct or indirect) of this?

  • If the people you want to recruit internally are currently your peers how do you think they would handle reporting to you?

  • How would this interact with their existing reporting lines in the event of the "part time" idea? Who would have "final say" over their management?

  • Related to the one above - how would any conflicts in demand for a shared person's time be handled?

There's more than that obviously but those should get you thinking along the right lines.

who should I engage? (direct manager or the person above him ).

First point of engagement should be your direct manager, they may well not have the authority to actually implement your proposal but going around them is not a good idea from a political or courtesy point of view.

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    @Snow good point - I've added some bits to the answer around this and other hierarchy concerns. – motosubatsu May 31 '18 at 10:25
  • First point of engagement should be your direct manager -- Yep, do not skip this person.... – Mister Positive May 31 '18 at 16:23

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