Every manager knows that collaboration is the key to improving productivity in their team. The data shows that collaboration increases innovation as well as productivity. But the idea of getting everyone in your boat to row in the same direction is easier than actually implementing it in practice. This blog will help you understand the key factors necessary to build a collaborative work environment.
What Makes a Collaborative Team?
A collaborative team rallies around the idea of a shared purpose. So, organizations must start first with a clear goal that a team can work toward. Then the team must decide the series of steps necessary to achieve these goals. Finally, is achieving the goal enough for the employee or should there be other rewards associated with reaching that bar?
Along the way toward your goal, your team must be transparent about their efforts to reach that milestone. This can help build trust between members of the team as they work together. We’ve found that it’s easy to work independently, but building this level of trust in your coworkers takes time and is harder to do. To get there, you must:
- Make sure everyone is on the same page about tasks, challenges, and processes. Laying out the responsibilities necessary to reach the goal is step one. Step two is to hold the team accountable for the tasks. This is necessary because if one cog in the wheel doesn’t do its part, the entire wheel will fail.
- Use collaboration tools, particularly if you have remote employees, to keep everyone in the loop. Communication is a huge part of the collaboration effort. You can use video conferencing, instant messaging, and daily standups to communicate more effectively. Having all the pieces of your work in a centralized hub online is also a good way to foster better collaboration between your team members.
- Set some ground rules about what’s appropriate to communicate, what your expectations are, communicate the deadlines, and reward your team. Engage the team by setting goals and milestones together instead of from the top down. Then normalize a system of rewards to give small and big shout outs to individuals and the team itself.
- Don’t micromanage, but allow the team to interact autonomously together to work out the best ways of collaborating. This will strengthen the bonds of the team. Once the team gets on the same page about their goals and processes, your job is to step back and just provide support. Provide them with a good support structure that allows for questions, training, or even offers a sounding board for ideas. Step in if you see dysfunction or some kind of problem. Otherwise, trust that you’ve hired the right people with the right skills to do the job.
Stellar Staffing works hard to ensure that you find the right people with the right collaboration skills to make things happen at your business. We’re standing by to provide you with a hiring resource with the skills and network to fill important seats on your bus. Call on us to find out how we can help you meet your hiring goals.