Steps to Building Collaboration within the Organization

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20 April 2013 - 11:24am -- gisella

CollaborationCollaboration within any company is of crucial importance, as it means everyone is working in the same direction and has a shared understanding of the aims and targets. With everyone working together and not tugging in different directions, the speed and quality of work will increase, as will team morale.

  1. Build a Shared Vision - Develop a common vision and goals for your team. In order to have complete buy-in and commitment it’s important to involve different stakeholders in the process. Give everyone a chance to contribute their ideas and thoughts. Involve team members in determining goals and objectives.

  2. Develop Shared Values - Establish the norms and standards as guidelines for how people make decisions and interact with one another. Hold people accountable for deviating from the agreed norms and acknowledge and appreciate those who honour the group values.

  3. Communicate Openly and Regularly - Keep the team informed of progress on various team initiatives. Allow communication to be two-way and get feedback from team members. Reports should cover what went well, what didn’t go well, and what was learned. Do not limit communication to formal communication; instead informal communications must also be encouraged. Take full advantage of technology to get your team and organization talking.

  4. Introduce Team Appraisals - In addition to individual appraisals, team performance reviews should be introduced. A number of organizational outcomes depend on the interdependence of different activities being carried out by people in different positions within the team and across the organization. As a result it is important to measure the collective outcome. Organizations also face the challenge that people may not be concerned about team outcomes as long as they meet their specific individual job responsibilities. Sadly some people even feel good about themselves if they succeed while the team fails. This adds further credence for the need to promote and motivate the need for working and succeeding together. The team appraisal system is effective in making people accountable and working for the collective outcome.

  5. Value Diversity - People often make the mistake of viewing diversity in terms of the challenges presented by the differences between the cultures within and between different groups; however, this dynamic does present significant opportunities as well. Diversity is presented in many ways including race, faith and beliefs, gender, economic background and so forth. People of different backgrounds, skills, attitudes, and experience bring new, alternate, and fresh ideas to the table challenging our long standing perceptions and offering a new and possibly better way to view and to get things done. Appreciation and respect for diversity can be promoted through staff training and implementation of clear company policies.

  6. Celebrate Successes - Each time you celebrate your victories you acknowledge the efforts and successes of the team and people are inspired to continue their winning ways. Conversely, failing to celebrate victories and reward the team can cause a lack of morale or despondency.

It is not particularly difficult to create collaboration within an organization, but it is important to ensure that all team members are happy to go in the required direction, and so it is important to have clear communication and rewards.