Ask DN: How to unify a new design team and encourage collaboration?

7 years ago from , Full-stack designer

My workplace decided to spin off it's marketing department into it's own independent creative agency. With the transition to an agency setup, some members of the team are having track time, create estimates, and perform other business tasks on a regular basis for the first time in their career. Many of us were either from freelance or corporate backgrounds, but nobody on the team aside from the director has substantial experience in an agency setting or working collaboratively with a design team on projects.

While the new agency is exciting, we have a few inter-team problems to solve to get off the ground. There's a mix of seniority, age, skill, and backgrounds within the team and hierarchically speaking we're all expected to operate on the same "level". Because of this, there's a lot of ego getting in the way at times and causing conflict and/or misunderstandings. It's created some tension between some team members, and we're looking for ways to dissolve that and encourage collaboration.

We're pretty curious what morning rituals and other team-building exercises other teams do regularly. Any ideas?