While it may take a village to raise a child, it takes collaboration to build a successful business. Whether you build strategic alliances, use portfolio management, build innovation networks or create ecosystems, the collaborative process brings people and ideas together for mutual benefit.
Collaboration in business brings people together to work towards a common goal. This builds valuable connections that aid learning and problem-solving, making the company more efficient and profitable. Using strategies to improve collaboration in your workplace can help you discover how your workforce becomes more connected and dedicated to their job.
Are you looking for ways to improve collaboration at your business? Use the best strategies to improve team performance and communication. Here is a guide on how to improve collaboration in business:
1. Consistent Communication
Teamwork makes the dream work but only when there is open dialogue. You must build an open space where everyone can contribute, share ideas with the group, and have their voice heard. People will speak up more when they feel safe and without judgment, which fuels company growth.
Be consistent in updating information so no one is left behind, and encourage team members to share that information to interact, review and comment on projects together.
2. Team Building Activities
You need to build a company culture that brings people together in a shared experience because everyone wants to belong. Having every member of staff involved and engaged while at work brings more innovation and growth. You can develop this camaraderie by engaging in team-building activities like:
- Virtual coffee breaks
- Compliment circle
- Work show and tell
- Lunch and learn
- Community service
- Office trivia
These are fun to participate in and create deeper connections with employees, making them more open to collaborating on projects and tasks.
3. Team Collaboration Software
Some companies operate under a hybrid model where part of their workforce is remote, working from home or in another part of the world. This makes it hard to communicate and work together on projects effectively. Fortunately, there is team collaboration software.
These are tools designed to create an intelligent workplace where employees can meet in one virtual place to create and engage, regardless of location. These community platforms allow staff to collaborate by sharing information across the organization with search and discovery applications to be more connected.
The best software integrates newsfeeds and liking and commenting, which resembles social media platforms, making it familiar and user-friendly. They can connect with other employees on this intranet, making it easier to work together as a team. Your workforce will be connected and harmonized with automated tools and integrated apps.
4. Lead by Example
If you want to foster an ethos of collaboration, it starts from the top down. A manager or CEO can’t hide in their office all day, conducting business in a bubble. They should start an open-door policy, get out among the workforce, and communicate with them to connect to what’s happening and spearhead collaboration.
Every employee should also be part of what’s happening, and different departments must work together, regardless of role or job level. When staff sees that managers get their hands dirty and dig in on projects, it inspires them to imitate that behaviour and ramp up productivity in the entire company.
There is nothing wrong with asking advice from a co-worker, especially if they have a skill set you don’t have. You may be well-versed in different processes and can share that knowledge with others to benefit the team. This is what being a mentor is all about.
Your company should have a mentorship program to help guide staff in their work projects. You could seek out a mentor or be one yourself. A mentor:
- Provides encouragement
- Give honest feedback
- Connects you with new contacts
- Holds you accountable
- Shows you how to work in a team
- Is a role model
This is the ultimate collaboration and a way to develop personal and get the best out of all employees.
6. Put People Outside Their Comfort Zone
When starting new projects, bring in fresh blood from within the company, especially those not specialized in the type of work. While this may seem counterintuitive, it is a great way to advance employees’ skill sets and provide a need for collaboration.
These team members are already great at what they do, that’s why they work for the company, and by putting them in a new role, they must learn from another person’s expertise. They bring a fresh perspective and can offer suggestions while sharing their ideas with the team. Your employees will connect more as they work together and gain experience while supporting each other.