The Phantom Org Chart: 4 Positions You Need on Your Team

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One of the most frequently asked questions I’m getting these days is “How has a team of 13 managed to help turnaround an organization that recently numbered over 25?”

Part of the answer to this question is found in key roles that are being played out in a manner that simply doesn’t show up on any organization chart. Here’s a few of the “phantom” roles that have proven vital in our turnaround, and which I believe every high performance team needs:

1. Vice President of Keepin’ it Fun
­ When the hours are long, when the stakes are high, and when the pressure is mounting, it’s important that someone leads the way in injecting pure fun. Our VP of KIF has a PHD in silliness.

2. National Director of Don’t Give Up
­ We’ve seen this role distributed among two or three team members. They’ve been deputized to watch for sagging shoulders and are authorized to find ways to provide encouragement and motivation.

3. Chief Maybe There’s A Better Way to Do This Officer
­ On a lean team someone needs to be skilled in looking for solutions to challenges in creative, unconventional ways. The person on our team who does this could run a clinic on the subject.

4. General Manager of How Are You REALLY Doing?
­ One of the quietest people on our team has an off-the-charts emotional intelligence, and leverages this gift to help ensure the sustainability of the team. Absolutely vital.

Are the “formal” org chart positions important? Of course. But if you want a high-performance team, pay attention to the “phantom roles” you need. (Next time I’ll blog about the phantom roles you must avoid!)

What phantom roles have been most important on your team?

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