Tiger Team: The Benefits of Using One

Understanding Tiger Teams: their role, benefits, and impact in project management. Learn how Tiger Teams can drive success in complex projects.



A Tiger Team is a specialized set of people from diverse departments inside a company whose purpose is to investigate or solve a particular issue (or set of issues). StratusGrid recently utilized a Tiger Team to address a learning need within our organization. We learned a lot about building/implementing a Tiger Team during this process and wanted to share a few things we learned for anyone else who is considering this approach.

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In this article, we will explore:

  1. How to successfully build and implement a Tiger Team
  2. Laying the foundation and StratusGrid’s success story


Successfully Building a Tiger Team

Choosing the right people for your team is an important step in the process. Here are three things to consider when choosing your team:

  1. Diversity and Varying Levels of Experience

    Ensure that you are recruiting Subject-Matter Experts (SMEs) with a wide range of skills (both technical and soft) who accurately represent your organization’s capabilities. It is also important to recruit members with varying levels of experience. By selecting senior members, they can share valuable information from a unique point of view. Your team members should be familiar with the company and generally how each department operates.

  2. The Size of Your Team
    When deciding the size of your team, it’s better to keep it small – around 5 to 7 people. Keeping your team small will help with moving efficiently through the problem-solving process.

  3. Adaptable and Committed Team Members

    Selecting proactive people who adapt easily is important for building a Tiger Team. Because these teams are typically on a volunteer basis, members need to be self-starters who are passionate about solving the problem and are willing to be open-minded to different approaches or perspectives.

Laying the Foundation for StratusGrid’s Tiger Team

Strategically laying the foundation is a key component of any successful team. In this section, we will discuss ways to help your Tiger Team run efficiently and share StratusGrid’s experience with using a Tiger Team.

Identifying the problem

In 2021, StratusGrid started focusing on building an internal learning environment that helped support teammates both personally and professionally. We realized that in order to build this out, there was a need to develop a structured learning environment where the process and the end goal were clear.

The two main issues were:

  1. How can we motivate our team to learn new things?
  2. How do we go about structuring this learning environment?

Decide meeting times to brainstorm ideas

It is important to establish a regular meeting time. Our team decided that meeting once a week would be sufficient.

During the brainstorming phase, we discussed how to meet our goal of developing a structured learning environment. We eventually decided that it was important to create a place where teammates could learn while also being challenged to work towards specific certifications or badges. Essentially, the idea was to build learning objectives centered around a gamification type of approach to make our teammates excited to earn badges.

Company feedback and development

When we developed our prototype, we sent our team an RFC and asked for feedback on anything they thought could be improved. After we reviewed the feedback, we used it to refine our original idea, and then we selected employees to test it in Google classroom – where the badges and assignments were hosted.

Success or failure?

After many months of feedback and prototypes, we were able to implement the badge program. Our two original issues were resolved by focusing on the root problem and solving it from the ground up. The learning environment was received with a lot of enthusiasm from the rest of our organization, and it is something that has already added value to our learning program.

The Bottom Line

Forming a Tiger Team can be a great approach to solving complex issues. It provides an organized space wherein a range of opinions and perspectives can be shared. This turned out to not only be the right technical approach for StratusGrid, but it was a great cultural fit as well. Our culture places an emphasis on building spaces where people can be consistently supported and respectfully challenged.

If you are interested in learning more about our experience building a Tiger Team, or if you have questions about how to implement this process in your organization, reach out to us at growth@stratusgrid.com .

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