Maintaining Team Processes After Restructuring

Michel Domenjoud

Senior Engineering Manager at Doctolib



Whenever a company needs to restructure its teams, it can be a challenging moment for the organization. I currently work as an engineering manager at Doctolib. A while ago, we had a mixed team of 13 people, with both developers and people working in product. In addition, we had 7 people who were exclusively product-focused. The teams had common objectives but were growing quite quickly, so we needed to split them into two so each of the teams could focus on one of our two main objectives, independently of the other team.

Actions taken

The first thing we had to do was figure out how to split the team and who would go where. However, this wasn't too difficult. We identified who would like to go where, and then the product manager and I evaluated each person to determine who would be the best fit for each team.

"We wanted to split the team in a progressive way, so we took three months to make the changes."

Step-by-step, we began to do some of our daily work in separate groups. The more difficult issue we faced was keeping our culture and practices once we had split the team. It's not entirely necessary to keep your processes exactly the same, but we needed to quickly find a way to remain as productive as we had been before.

"We already were running a continuous improvement process, with team retrospectives, and short feedback loops."

However, the product manager and I had to be very vigilant about retaining our processes in the two new teams. To do this, we used retrospectives to ask specific questions of the teams to collect feedback about how the teams were running. We also started to use more precise indicators about how many features we were delivering. We already had used these indicators but decided to do it in an even more precise way.

Lessons learned

"Our teams were happy with the way in which we made changes to the team."

While we did face some issues while transitioning, because we made changes transparently and in a collective way, we were able to quickly identify how to solve any issues. Using a slow, methodical approach to splitting up the teams was also really useful, as it allowed people to get used to the changes, rather than having imposing changes upon them suddenly.

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Michel Domenjoud

Senior Engineering Manager at Doctolib

Leadership DevelopmentCommunicationOrganizational StrategyCulture DevelopmentEngineering ManagementPerformance MetricsFeedback TechniquesAgile, Scrum & KanbanTeam & Project ManagementDiversity & Inclusion

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