The action of working with someone to produce or create something. To work with another person or group in order to achieve or do something.
Collaboration is a worthy goal, but just getting everyone in the same room won’t make it happen. The company culture has to reinforce and reward team collaboration.
Here are 5 guidelines for effective collaboration:
Accountability is critical to a collaborative workplace. Although no one wants to feel like they’re doing all the work alone (remember group projects in school?), people also don’t want to feel like their good work has gone unnoticed. Accountability helps provide clarity and sets the stage for recognition.
The biggest upsides of collaboration are creativity and innovation — but those don’t come without trust. Creating an environment where people feel psychologically safe is a prerequisite for successful collaboration. Without trust, people won’t share their ideas or feel comfortable taking risks.
There are two approaches to problem-solving. Some people treat it as an inconvenience and work as if their backs are against the wall. Some teams, however, treat problems as opportunities for growth.
Going into any project with a positive, optimistic outlook will make a huge difference in the types of ideas you brainstorm and the experience of getting there.
Collaboration thrives in a fast-paced environment. People rapidly lose enthusiasm for projects that stretch on and on without any end date in sight. Completing projects quickly pushes people to come up with new ideas and better ways of executing them by immersing them in the work at hand.
Finally (or maybe firstly?), make sure the problem is significant or complex enough to benefit from collaboration. Designing a product launch campaign? Collaboration-worthy. Writing an email? Probably not. Nothing kills the passion for working together faster than making every task a group task. If there are side reasons — such as onboarding a new team member or freshening up the approach on a big account — make those goals clear to everyone involved.