Collaboration Round-up: Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
The era of cog-in-the-wheel ways of work have quickly disappeared, as teams work cross-functionally to move projects and operational tasks forward. In corporate, there’s seldom an individual contributor whose role is to complete one step in a task on one widget before he or she passes it along. For this reason, the ability to collaborate and communicate effectively is essential.
In case you’ve missed it, we’ve rounded up our favorites in collaboration-advice from the likes of Harvard Business Review and Forbes to help you play (and work) nicely with your team.
A study evaluated in Forbes, suggests that when rewards or an abundance mindset exists, teams are more likely to collaborate. Why does teamwork matter you wonder? This same study indicates that people are more likely to stick to a task longer, and are more productive when they work together. Participants who were primed to work together with their peers were 64-percent more likely to stay with the work, rather than get distracted or derailed. Companies that promote teamwork are also five times more likely to be classified as high performing.
If you want your employees to play nice, and to enjoy the productivity benefit, put some money where your mouth is. Give bonuses to teams who push work forward together. Kumbaya!
Just as with small, on-site teams, people are equally more productive when they leverage each other’s strengths to complete tasks across time zones. While global and distributed teams make the task of collaboration more difficult, it’s not impossible. Harvard Business Review shares how individuals can work together to create sharing, communicative relationships. The key theme is to be intentional.
Schedule meetings to check in with peers and collaborators even when you think you don’t need to. Take the time to build relationships and engage in small talk across global teams, even if it’s simply to share about the distractions in your workplace, like a dog for example, or to talk about the weather. While you can’t exactly lament together about the shared commute, enjoy the humanness of each other’s experience to make them (off-site team members) feel less like them and more like your team.
Productivity and camaraderie are often touted as the greatest benefits of team collaboration. This Small Biz Trends article indicates that there are other business results that come from teamwork. Duplication of work across teams can make teams feel frustrated, and like they’ve wasted time and effort, which breeds apathy.
Teams that work closely together are less likely to step out of their lane, and also communicate more effectively because they’re a part of the process at every step of the way. Streamlined process and outcomes also result when people work side-by-side. When the right hand knows what the left is doing, the hand off becomes simplified and quicker. Collaboration also encourages people to use their strengths and utilize subject-matter-experts that are on a different team, rather than settle on the teammate who sits closest, but may be comparatively sub-par. If your company struggles to break from the segregated, cube-like work style, help them understand the ROI on employee output and engagement to persuade them to foster a collaborative culture.