The Role of the Team Leader

Since team members come together to share their expertise and knowledge of the process under consideration, the team leader's role is to function primarily as a coordinator, not a decision maker.

However, the team leader should be familiar with the process, and its stakeholders. He or she should be able to draw information from all team members throughout the improvement process, manage scheduling and record keeping within the team, and maintain communications and a working relationship with the sponsor(s). The team leader may also play a key role in selecting the other members of the team.

The team leader's role includes:

  • Serving as the primary communication link between the sponsor and the team

  • Coordinating team logistics

  • Planning and evaluating team meetings with the team facilitator

  • Keeping official records of team activities

  • Providing access to any information the team needs regarding process improvement

  • Bridging to each next step in the structured problem solving process

If the team leader supervises team members in their normal work activities, he or she needs to put that role aside during the team activities to allow for open communications without fear of reprisal.

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