It’s not likely that a business can function at peak performance without some type of collaboration. Whether it’s between management teams and their direct reports or within each individual department, your company won’t be at its best with only one person making all the decisions and giving all the ideas. For this reason, collaboration is vital. However, many businesses struggle with getting everyone within the organization to embrace a culture of collaboration. So to help your business overcome this hurdle, here are three ways you can encourage collaboration within your company.
Model Collaboration From The Top Down
Managers can best lead those below them by showcasing a good example. This is especially true with collaboration. You can’t simply tell your team that they need to collaborate when you don’t take the time to do it yourself. And even if the upper levels of your company do often collaborate and collaborate well, it can be hard for people on the ground floor to see that. To help with this, Lynda Gratton and Tamara J. Erickson, contributors to Harvard Business Review, recommend having upper management collaborate face-to-face with their employees as often as possible. You can also use internal marketing to show images of each team within your organization meeting together under a feeling of collaboration.
Have A Strategy When Introducing Collaborative Technology
Advances in technology have made it easier than even to collaborate within an organization. However, Jacob Morgan, a contributor to Forbes.com, advises that companies always have a strategy in place before they introduce a new collaborative technology to their business. Without knowing why you need this technology to improve collaboration or how collaboration will hopefully be streamlined using this technology, you could end up making it harder to collaborate. So before you start addressing proposed problems in collaboration, take the time to strategize the why and how for your solution.
Allow Everyone A Voice
True collaboration can’t happen unless everyone involved has a voice and is given the chance to be heard. Sadly, this can often be difficult in a large organization when actions must be taken quickly. But to truly take advantage of all being collaborative has to offer, Joanne Graf, a contributor to BizJournals.com, suggests not rushing into action until adequate dialogue has taken place in a collaborative setting. The last thing you want to do is move too swiftly and not hear all ideas for how to improve your business, especially if the best one is left sitting in the mind of someone who never got the chance to share.
If your company is struggling with implementing ideas for company-wide collaboration, use the tips mentioned above to help you overcome this challenge.