At this point, team leaders and supervisors alike have probably heard the word ‘collaboration’ so many times that it’s understandable if you’re feeling a little sick of it. With countless seminars, conferences, and conventions highlighting its importance, it’s rare to find a manager who’s never encountered the dreaded word.
While it’s great that managers are aware of the concept of collaboration, not everyone fully understands and knows how to properly implement collaborative initiatives. In fact, Yahoo reports that at least 86% of America’s workforce cite a lack of collaboration and poor communication as the main reasons why projects don’t fully succeed.
Here, we’re going to discuss what exactly team collaboration is, and how business leaders can use it to its full potential.
Team collaboration defined
Collaboration in the workplace simply means being able to freely work with your colleagues and higher-ups to achieve a common goal. Usually, this workplace approach puts the importance of teamwork, equal division of tasks, and efficient thinking in order to solve a workplace problem as one unit. Other than that, team collaboration also calls attention to efficiently using a company’s resources and innovating when needed. This way, all the team members are able to do their part equally, as they collectively attain personal and team goals.
This is what you can achieve with team collaboration
On an individual level, team collaboration allows your employees to receive feedback straight from the higher-ups. This happens because you open the lines of communication between every tier of the company hierarchy through different synergizing activities. Other than that, collaboration opportunities flesh out each team member’s strengths and weaknesses — providing you with a full view of what you can applaud and give constructive criticism to.
Furthermore, pooling your team’s skills and talents offers you a chance to solve a problem in a more efficient manner. A Stanford University study shows that simply feeling that you are part of a collaborative effort boosts productivity, even if employees are not exactly working in the same room or on the same project.
With activities that promote collaboration, you’re given a chance to see your company from a higher vantage point. You can assess if there’s something lacking — whether it’s in diversity, training, or internal interaction. Moreover, team collaboration also gives you enough information to see if you need to re-evaluate and streamline your company’s visions and goals. Author Martin Medeiros points out that being strategic and asking a lot of questions can also help you make an informed decision on how to go about the problems that this point of view reveals to you. This way, you safeguard both your company’s and employees’ principles or values.
Make team collaboration work for you
In a time when most of the world is working remotely, how can you be sure that your team will be just as collaborative now as they are in an office setting?
For starters, it could be very beneficial to adopt an organizational leadership style. This approach permits you to make the most impact on your company while you strategize company goals and inspire your employees to strive for success. With an organizational leadership style, Maryville University underscores the importance of adopting a collaborative mindset, as it directly influences a company’s behavior. This means that organizational leaders should incorporate activities and challenges that stimulate collaboration between their teams.
As a leader, one way you could do this is by introducing fun team building activities that allow your company to interact with each other. Even in a virtual workplace, you can inspire collaboration through interactive online team games or by starting a weekly group town hall where people can share and express how they’re adapting to the current work landscape.
Without a doubt, collaboration is the backbone of a successful business. Thankfully, no matter where your team is, you can always promote a healthy and collaborative working environment.
Written exclusively for RedDirection.com by Monica Hammond
For more tips on growth, leadership, and business strategy check out our previous articles.
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